Although international travel is no longer illegal, current advice is not to travel to amber or red list countries so options for anything other than essential travel are limited. There’s also a whole host of hoops to jump through if you’re planning a post pandemic trip. Luckily here are 10 top travel tips which might just help!
Refer to the latest FCDO travel advice and updates on the official gov.uk website not just for UK guidance but also for your destination. It’s easy to do a search just by typing in the name of the country in question and then checking the entry requirements for that country.
Check the Terms and Conditions of your booking carefully so that you are fully aware of your tour operator’s procedures in the event of cancellations. Many tour operators are offering flexible bookings, which allow for Covid related eventualities but you need to check the small print, as some aren’t worth the paper they are written on.
Research thoroughly what country specific paperwork you need to fill in before travel and ensure you compile all necessary information timely and accurately. Up to date information can be located easily on the official gov.uk website if you are booking your holiday direct. Alternatively in the case of package holidays, your provider or travel agent will be able to advise.
Avoid any DIY holidays. If you book a package holiday, you are covered under the Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements 2018 and entitled to a refund within 14 days accordingly if your holiday is cancelled. DIY holidays with separate components are not covered in the same way.
Book using a reputable travel agent; The pandemic has demonstrated that navigating the ever-changing travel advice is tricky and confusing. Regardless of your destination, travel agents are able to take care of every single aspect of your trip and deal with problems if changes need to be made. In a nutshell, they do all the work so you don’t have to.
Avoid any payments by bank transfer particularly if the recipient is a new contact. For maximum protection, pay by credit card so that you are covered by Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act should the provider go out of business or if the product or service is not delivered or is not as described.
Make sure you take out travel insurance. Although no insurers offer full protection from coronavirus related incidents, most now offer some kind of Covid 19 cover. Some cover is more comprehensive than others so is well worth the investment.
Keep up to date with country specific data to inform your travel decisions. This is readily available from The PC Agency’s website and the Twitter feed of Travel Expert and CEO of The PC Agency Paul Charles.
Know your consumer rights as to what you can and can’t claim for travelwise. The best websites for information in this respect are Which?Travel and Resolver. Plus of course you can always check my own blog posts for simple, essential reference guides.
Be prepared for the unexpected. Nothing is written in stone when it comes to post pandemic travel in 2021 so changes to the status quo are inevitable. Despite assurances to the contrary, list changes are likely to be rapid so being prepared for the unexpected is crucial. If you can’t take the current hits, then please consider a foreign holiday at a later date instead to support a beleaguered industry where every single booking counts now more than ever.
I hope that the above tips are useful. Do you have any to add? Please let me know in the comments below.