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2020 has been, for the majority of us, the first time we have ever lived through a pandemic of any kind, let alone a global one.
Although the concept of social distancing and isolation isn’t new for those of us who have been through a cancer diagnosis or have an autoimmune condition, as everything starts to reopen, our minds understandably turn to holidays.
We know that this can be daunting and scary step to take, especially if you are a higher risk than others.
As travel insurance experts, we wanted to give you some idea of some things you can expect to come across if you choose to travel this year, as well as some advice of how to book your trip.
We know there are a lot of words being thrown around in the media regarding travel that some may not quite understand:
Travel Corridors – Also known as ‘air bridges’, thesetravel corridors will allow us to travel to and from international destinations,providing they have a low infection rate. It also means you do not need toquarantine when you return to the UK (good news for those who don’t have muchannual leave to take, or who want to show off their new tan to friends andfamily).
Pandemic – An epidemic, just on a global scale, withinfections happening across the world at roughly the same time. As peopletravel between countries, they bring the virus or bacteria with them and itspreads throughout the population.
Quarantine – A historical concept that used to applyto ships coming into ports laden with disease. Quarantine is used to keep youseparate from other people and is used by local authorities to restrict thespread of disease through contact.
Air Quality – This is something that airlines will beadvertising and some have already started. This is in relation to theirfiltration systems and how this could prevent the spread of the virus. Somepeople will be looking into this before booking their flights, as a safetymeasure.
Use the governments website to confirm the countries you are able to travel to (if you are wanting to leave the UK) as well as the travel corridors currently open here.
Check the destination or resort itself, as some of them haveextra rulings specific to them. For example, if you are looking to travel to Dubai,any incoming tourists are required to provide a negative test result takenwithin 4 days of the flight. If you haven’t had one upon arrival then you canget one there, but you will need to self-isolate until you have received yourresults confirming you are clear.
Ensurebefore booking that the hotel or apartment has re-opened following lockdown asthere have already been cases of people arriving at their hotels to find thatthey are still closed, or have closed again since they booked.
On thewhole, the majority of companies have been transparent with their customers butthere will always be a couple that fall through the cracks, so make sure to doyour research.
On the whole,hotels and formal B&Bs are more likely to be cleaner than AirBnB’s as theyare regulated. That said, they’re busier and more people use things likestairways or hallways. To give yourself total peace of mind, you might want tobook independent accommodation that you can clean as soon as you arrive (whowould have thought you’d be packing the Marigolds to go on holiday this timelast year?)
If you’regoing on holiday with another household, make sure you abide by the guidelinesput in place by the Government. If social distancing is required, be mindful ofthis when booking accommodation. These guidelines are subject to change soworth keeping an eye on before you’re due to travel.
We always advise customers to purchase their travel insurance once they have paid any sort of deposit towards their trip, to ensure they are fully covered for anything that could lead them to cancel, such as a new diagnoses of Coronavirus that means you have to self-isolate for 14 days. Please visit our COVID-19 page for more details on the cover we can provide.
You have booked your holiday and have got your insurance – what next?
Although most people will be continuing to use contactless payments, we appreciate that some still prefer to use cash, especially when it comes to holidays.
However, money is already one of thedirtiest things in the world, even before coronavirus started to spread. Luckily,we have found a company that will provide you with sterile banknotes.
It is currently only available inEuros and US Dollars, but at least you know it will be clean!
The currency is available from Travel Money Club which is being supplied by Spendology and can give you that peace of mind that you want in this climate.
If you want to visit any tourist attractions whilst away, we recommend that you find them online, or give them a call before turning up. Most places are now open now, but some could potentially be closed or are more likely to close if your destination sees a spike in infection rate. They also may have reduced opening hours, as well as the need to book in advance.
The travelling itself will look very different to what weare used to.
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