Travelling over the past year has been easier said than done. With fluctuating restrictions across the world and an ever-changing checklist of flight corridors to and from the UK, it’s been very difficult to take a holiday or travel for work. Even if you have managed to escape lockdown, more often than not, the quarantine periods either side of the journey have left a bitter aftertaste for any enjoyment. This is why many of us have opted for business meetings via conference calls and video chats, whilst holidays have had to be focused on the local rather than the international, taking into account a rapidly changing tier system and three separate national lockdowns.
Whilst Londoners and key workers in the UK capital might have been able to enjoy the luxury of the Chilworth Hotel Paddington London, those living outside the city have had a more difficult time finding an escape from lockdown and remote working life. In contrast, it’s certainly the case that many Londoners stuck in the city might have yearned for an escape to the countryside. Hopefully, come the summer of 2021, we’ll be able to travel further afield again, and there’s no reason why you shouldn’t start planning ahead. After all, many of us have the time on our hands!
Planning A Post COVID Holiday
From package holidays abroad to getaways in London, if you’re itching for a trip there’s no time like the locked-down present to get planning for when travel restrictions are lifted. Whilst concrete dates may not yet be possible, you can ensure that you have all the other elements of your holiday nailed down.
Where To Go
First off and most crucially, your destination should be well researched. A couple’s 2 night London hotel deal is one thing, but finding a suitable destination for a larger group or longer stay is quite another. Depending on how COVID infection rates are looking, it might be the case that you can only travel abroad with your core bubble, meaning that you may have to appease different ages, genders and tastes during your stay. In the cases where your travelling with a larger and eclectic group of people, variety is key to a successful trip. Try looking at city breaks or resorts where there’s a lot of choice in available activities and attractions.
Research Destinations And Their Infection Rates
The infection rates vary dramatically across the world, and once the infection rates of the UK are low enough to allow us to go on holiday, the same might not go for the country or area we’re planning on visiting. When it comes to around two weeks before your date of travel, take a look at the infection rates in the area you’re visiting. Whether they’re rising or falling, this will help you decide if there’s a need a back-up plan, just in case your destination goes into lockdown or heightened restrictions.
Is Your Passport Out Of Date?
Most of us haven’t needed one for almost a year now so this is less silly a double-check than you’d think. If your passport is soon to expire or already has, make sure you have obtained a new one before travel. Receiving a new passport can take a few weeks, so plan this in advance.
Are There VISA Requirements?
Does the country your visiting require additional security checks or paperwork? Like a new passport, this can take a few weeks to organise, so if you’re travelling for a longer period of time and need additional paperwork, make sure to plan this one a few weeks, even months in advance.
More important now than ever before, some countries require you to receive booster shots or vaccinations before visiting. Soon enough, this might also be the case for coronavirus vaccines, so make sure you know what you need to prepare.
Closer To The Date Of Travel
The preparations listed below are less long term considerations and more about the essentials you’ll need for a post-COVID overseas trip.
Double Check Accommodation Availability
Make sure that you double-check the availability of your accommodation before embarking on your journey. Infection rates, positive results on COVID tests and even just second-hand exposure can send a business spiralling into self-isolation and quarantine protocols. More broadly, this is also the case for flights, which could be cancelled or postponed if the destination tightens restrictions or decides to prohibit travel from your country of origin.
Make Sure You Don’t Have COVID
This should be a given. If you’re worried about potential future or past exposure COVID or have had a positive test result, then you should postpone your trip. If you’re travelling with vulnerable people or are one yourself, then you should weigh up the risk of travel abroad against the rewards for it.
What To Pack
Remember packing? We haven’t had to think about this for almost a year now, but that mad cramming three hours before your flight will one day be a common occurrence again.
This is a given – toothbrush, appropriate clothing and medicine. Make sure that you have the correct amounts and any paperwork printed to prove your need for the latter.
Travel insurance might be something that you organise a week or so before your trip, but it is equally important that you have the documents on hand during your holiday. This might be to prove your purchase of access to healthcare if you fall ill on your trip or so that you can receive compensation if you’re burgled or robbed during the holiday.
Always Pack PPE
One day, we won’t have to worry about COVID-19 anymore. The fact remains that for the foreseeable we will, meaning that PPE is essential for travel hand luggage. Your PPE should include a facemask and personal antibacterial gel, ensuring that you apply it regularly when in busy public spaces. Many airports and travel terminals will have installed their own PPE protection, but this shouldn’t dissuade you from packing your own.