Travel Aware

Travel Aware

When booking or preparing to travel, it is essential that you keep up-to-date with the latest advice from The Foreign & Commonwealth Office and National Travel Health Network and Centre by visiting the government’s Travel Aware page.

As the advice can change regularly, it is the customer’s responsibility to check the pages prior to booking, and to check regularly prior to travel.

You can also find out more information by following @FCOtravel and Facebook.com/FCOtravel, or visiting www.travelhealthpro.org.uk.

Advice from The Foreign & Commonwealth Office includes*:

  • Ensure you take out the appropriate travel insurance before travelling, and check that it covers for all your chosen activities.
  • Check your passport is valid, and also fill out the emergency details and keep it in a safe place while travelling.
  • Ensure you have all the necessary visas for the countries you’re visiting, either as your final destination or as any part of your journey. They will be linked to your passport so ensure your passport is valid for your travel dates prior to applying for your visas.   Even if on a connecting flight you may still require a visa or similar to board a flight landing in that country.
  • Ensure you complete the FCO return home form 24 hours before returning to the UK
  • You can learn about the laws, visas, customs and entry requirements for your chosen destination by checking the government’s foreign travel advice.
  • Make copies of your important travel documents and store them securely using a secure data storage site.
  • If you’re travelling within Europe, you’ll need to make sure you have a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) that hasn’t expired. Ensure you understand what it covers. You will still need full travel insurance. Get your EHIC card at www.nhs.uk/ehic.
  • Give emergency contact details to your family or friends and tell them about your travel plans.
  • Ensure you’ve received all the necessary vaccinations and medical requirements for the country you’re visiting. You can find medical advice here.
  • Act responsibly, and take contact details of the local British Consulate with you in case of emergencies.
  • Take enough money with you, including making sure you have access to emergency funds.
  • Educate yourself in what consular staff can and cannot do to help British nationals travelling overseas by checking here.
  • You must hold a return or onward ticket and be able to present proof of this at the immigration desk on arrival in each country you visit.
  • Unless transitting a destination you must provide details of the address for the first night of your stay and have your travel itinerary available on request

*Please remember that it is the customer’s responsibility to check the government’s travel advice regularly and thoroughly prior to travel.

Most British and Irish citizens are eligible for the Visa Waiver Programme and can apply for an Electronic Travel Authorisation (ESTA). For more information and the latest guidelines please see here.

If you're also visiting Canada by air you will must obtain a Canadian Electronic Travel Authorisation (eTA). Please see here for more information.

Government Advice and Travel
The biggest question we have been receiving lately from our customers is “can I travel even if the Government have a travel advisory in place?”
The simple answer is yes you can if the country you are travelling to is allowing access to your country of origin in an acceptable way to you so as to allow you to enjoy your holiday experience.
We have always and will continue to advise our customers of any Government Travel Advisories and offer an alternative solution rather than travel against that advice.  This historically has been for individual countries and circumstances rather than blanket bans that we are currently facing now.  This is forcing many of our customers to have to make a difficult and personal decision whether to travel or not as the advice is so generic rather than specific safety advice we are used to from our government. We cannot advise you on this in any way, it has to solely be your decision.
We have therefore taken the considered decision that if a customer wishes to travel against a general covid government advisory, then we will facilitate this for you.  We will require you to complete a waiver form that confirms that you have received this advice from us and it is your own decision to travel.  This may be discussed with any of our sales management team.


What needs to be in place for me to be able to take my holiday?
For you to be able to take your holiday, you will need to have all of the following in place:
•    Your destination is accepting your nationality on entry without significant restriction
•    Your originating country has approved a travel corridor to your destination and/or you are happy that you may have to comply with re-entry requirements
•    Your flight is operational (we will confirm this)
•    Your hotel(s) / tour is operational (we will confirm this)
•    You have the correct and valid travel insurance in place (some policies become invalid if there is a travel advisory in place but there are lots of new policies out there that cover this eventuality)
•    Your balance is fully paid
•    You are comfortable with the exit/entry requirements and risks of change in policy and you are happy with any restricted delivery of your holiday that may be caused directly or indirectly from the Covid situation.


New Customer Bookings
We are very much open for new bookings and have a team set up ready to assist you.

Our team are well briefed on the current travel advisories so will be in a position to let you know if your preferred travel dates for your chosen destination are on sale.
We do not have a specific Covid-19 policy in place for new bookings as our standard terms of travel allow for full flexibility and free changes to customers bookings at any stage (subject to partners terms if prepayments made which we would discuss with you on booking).
We have seen through this pandemic, certain airlines offering less flexibility to change existing bookings than others.  Due to this we are not recommending to any of our valued customers to book the cheapest fares available that require immediate ticketing and payment.  These tend to lock you into the airline’s terms immediately.  Should you have any reason for change in the future, no matter if Covid related or any other reason, you may find there is a lack of flexibility with these partners.  In addition to this, as many airlines are still uncertain on their final schedules and frequencies after they resume, we are not recommending any flights be provisionally booked ahead of the firm schedules that are currently in place – normally 11 months forward of today’s date.

Existing Customers Bookings
Many of our holidays are operating as planned.  Some may be subject to entry or return restrictions and in some cases some facilities may be restricted either directly or indirectly due to the Covid-19 situation.
As the situation is so dynamic in terms of travel advice here and entry requirements overseas, we are working on the assumption that the vast majority of our holidays will or may be able to go ahead.  We will inform you in advance if we are certain we will not be able to fulfil your holiday arrangements.  Unless we specifically do this, you may take it that it is our intention to try our very hardest to fulfil our obligations to deliver your holiday.
You will need to settle your balance when it falls due to allow us to complete the prepayment of all suppliers to facilitate your travel arrangements.  Normal booking conditions will apply.

In some cases, we may have to make some minor changes to your holiday to facilitate your travel, if for any reason we are unhappy with any element of your trip in the current climate, or there is a need to change to allow you to travel as planned, such as a change in airline if a schedule has changed from your originally planned dates.  We will of course discuss any of these with you in detail.
If for any reason your travel cannot go ahead as planned, we will contact you as soon as we know to let you know why and what alternatives we can offer.  As this is such a dynamic situation, this may be very close to your departure date.

If you are disinclined to travel, our normal terms and conditions already give incredible flexibility to allow you to change your arrangements to future dates or alternative destinations.  In the vast majority of cases this is a very simple exercise.  In a rare few cases where we have needed to prepay certain providers such as airlines, we will have to work to their restrictions around changing your travel arrangements.
If you know in advance of your balance due date that you would rather not travel on your planned dates, we would prefer you let us know as soon as possible so we can assist you in changing your arrangements, as closer to the time, things can become slightly more restrictive with the providers of the components of your trip.

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