Travel column with Katie Butler: Confidence in overseas travel returns after easing of restrictions

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We continue to see a steady stream of new bookings, as confidence in overseas travel seems to be returning, albeit at a steady pace.

Katie Butler writes: Last week we also started to see other countries relax requirements for entry, with France once again allowing vaccinated travellers from the UK to enter for non-essential reasons.

This of course is great news for those planning a trip to Disneyland Paris for the half-term holidays.

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There is also a lot of speculation that travel requirements to return back to England may be relaxed even further for those fully-vaccinated.

Tenerife: Great destination for some winter sunshine. Photo: Getty ImagesTenerife: Great destination for some winter sunshine. Photo: Getty Images
Tenerife: Great destination for some winter sunshine. Photo: Getty Images

In fact it is rumoured that all tests could be scrapped for vaccinated travellers arriving into England as soon as the end of this month, although we still expect passenger locater forms to remain in place… watch this space!

Where is the simplest place to travel to right now?

If you are fully-vaccinated and are wanting to catch some winter sunshine, then the obvious choice would be the Canaries. As it stands right now, you just need to prove your vaccine status to get in to the Canaries and complete a passenger locater form. To come home again a passenger locater form is required and a test on or before day two of arriving home - this could change at the next review.

What is booking right now?

As expected there are lots of enquiries coming through for last minute bookings or “late deals”, as many of you want to take in a holiday while restrictions have eased. Family getaways for the main summer holidays for both this year and 2023 are popular right now, along with cheap deals to New York and Lapland for both 2022 and 2023.

Will I need to test before I travel on a summer holiday?

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Each country has their own requirements for international arrivals, which may or may not include presenting a negative Covid-19 test for entry. You will find the latest information and entry requirements on the FCDO (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) website. Here you can also activate an alert for a particular destination to advise you if anything changes. If you do need to take a test, it is best to research the various providers and book your tests before you travel so you can get everything sorted in time for your trip. Alternatively, speak with your travel provider who may also be able to advise you on where you are able to source tests.

What if I book a holiday and restrictions change to enter a country?

If you book a holiday to a destination and that country changes to the need to have a test before travelling, but the flight is still going ahead, then you will be required to adhere to the rules of that destination. This has happened with a number of our customers’ holidays and we are always able to source tests in time for travel. If you do not want to travel, then you may be able to change your holiday, but as always seek advice from your travel advisor and find out if your holiday is changeable and if so what administration fees may be involved.

A better than expected start to the year for the whole of the travel industry, we are keeping everything crossed that we can get more of you away on your long awaited holidays in 2022.

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