Following the government announcement last week that double vaccinated travellers returning from amber list countries will no longer need to quarantine, things are looking more positive for the travel industry over the summer with travel companies reporting a surge in bookings and enquiries.
The global travel industry has however changed dramatically from 16 months ago and rules and regulations are now in place to ensure travellers looking to visit destinations outside of the UK, do so safely and comfortably.
Sarah Salord, Company Director at GEC PR, has put together seven tips to help holidaymakers plan ahead and make the journey as easy and smooth as possible.
Sarah’s top tips include:
- Many of the countries included on the UK’s Green and Amber Lists require negative PCR tests to enter the country, so check the entry requirements for your chosen holiday destination by visiting the FCO Website. Make sure your PCR test is also booked within the required timeframe to allow entry.
- The FCO Website also offers travel advice email alerts on holiday destinations and is a handy way to keep updated with any changes to important information or FCO guidance – you can subscribe at gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.
- Checking the validity on my passport is always at the bottom of my holiday check list so make sure your passport is valid for long enough to allow entry into the country you’re visiting, as this can vary depending on the destination.
- All travellers currently returning to the UK from green or amber list countries must have a negative pre-departure Covid test taken three days before returning to the UK so plan ahead and find out the easiest place to have this done on holiday.
- Where possible, check-in online prior to arriving at the airport to reduce face-to-face contact and make the journey through the airport as easy as possible. Print off your boarding pass and/or download the airline’s app to have all your travel documents saved on your phone. Having everything digitally available in one place has certainly helped me in the past – especially when juggling paperwork for a family of four.
- Allow more time at the airport – with travel restrictions now lifted, the airports will be busier and with the added checks for PCR tests and vaccination paperwork it’s likely to take longer to check luggage in and get through security. So, plan for a bit of queuing and if you’re travelling with children, bring some distractions (such as snacks!).
- Pack enough hand sanitiser and face masks to ensure you and your travelling group have enough for the journey – especially for children as they do like to put their hands on everything.
International travel continues to be affected by Covid-19, however changes during the last year have made us all appreciate the importance of travel and the benefits of exploring new places. Fingers crossed we’ll all be packing those suitcases again soon!