Travel is back in a big way, but we understand that you may have more questions than normal after the last few years. So, we hope the below answers help to put your mind at ease. However, as always, we’re at the end of the phone on 01242 253 073 if you’d like to talk to one of our specialists about your holidays (or anything really! We’re a friendly bunch).
The top line: Travel with peace of mind
Very broadly speaking, where your holiday is impacted or impossible due to government restrictions (eg FCDO advice or your destination not allowing UK visitors in), then it is our responsibility to either make alternative arrangements, or give you a refund. Where your holiday is impacted or impossible because one of your party tests positive for Covid-19, then any costs incurred are a matter for your travel insurance.
This means that now, more than ever, it is absolutely vital to understand the travel insurance policy you are buying, and to look for certain key inclusions.
A note on travel insurance
When to take it out:
We strongly recommend purchasing travel insurance as soon as you book your holiday. This means you are covered from then on (coverage is dependent on policy purchased) should anything unforeseen happen between then and your departure.
What to look for:
You need your travel insurance to do the following:
- ✔ To cover cancellation costs of your holiday if you are unable to travel because you test positive for Covid-19 or have to isolate because of Covid-19.
- ✔ To cover any medical, quarantine, and travel rearrangement costs you incur if you test positive for Covid-19 whilst on holiday.
- ✔ To cover you to travel to a country where the FCDO is advising against non-essential travel (should you wish to travel contrary to FCDO advice).
The good news is that with a quality travel insurance policy under your arm, and our help and support alongside you, travelling with confidence is most definitely possible!
We’re always at the end of the phone to answer any worries or questions you may have about your holidays. But, for a quick bit of quick reassurance here, below are our frequently asked questions:
How does the booking process work?
Once your specialist has worked with you to design your perfect holiday and you choose to go ahead with booking, the next steps are as follows.
- We require a minimum deposit of 25% of the total cost to secure your holiday.
- Payment of your final balance will be required 10 weeks prior to departure, we will be in touch to remind you of this when it is time to pay.
- You will receive your final travel documents between 2 and 4 weeks before you leave on your holiday.
Am I covered financially should anything go wrong with my holiday?
We understand how important it is for you to have peace of mind and know that the money you give us for your holidays is properly protected. The number one message we want to communicate to you is simple: however you pay us, whatever kind of holiday you’re taking with us, your money is 100% protected. By which we mean that, if we were to cease trading at any point after you paid us money, you would be 100% guaranteed to get that money back in the event that your holiday couldn’t go ahead.
Our holidays are all covered by one of two principal forms of financial protection, detailed in our policy here . If our arrangements for you include flights (international or domestic) and ground arrangements (hotels, transfers, excursions etc), and you are either a UK citizen (resident anywhere in the world) or a legal resident in the UK (of any nationality), then the money you pay us for those arrangements will be covered under the ATOL scheme. If our arrangements for your holiday fall outside that description, then the money you pay us for those arrangements will be covered by our membership of the TMTProtects.me scheme operated by Trust My Travel.
How do I pay?
Bank transfer is the best way to pay for your holiday as it reduces fees our end, but you can pay by credit card if you prefer. It’s worth noting here that you are still financially protected if you pay by bank transfer.
What vaccinations do I need?
We might be experts in travel, but we absolutely are not qualified to give out medical advice of any kind. If you have any questions regarding vaccinations or medical arrangements, you should contact your GP or health clinic. We also find this website very helpful: www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk
Can you book my seats for my flight?
Pre-booking flight seats is something you need to do directly with the airline. As it often requires a payment to the airline and certain seats (like extra leg room for example) require an extra declaration from you, we are unable to do this on your behalf. We also find it can become frustrating for our clients when we choose them seats they don’t like, so rather than cause upset we prefer to give them the choice to either pre-book and pre-pay, or wait until check in, to ensure they have full control in their seating arrangements!
What happens if I can’t travel to my holiday destination because a) the FCDO advise against non-essential travel to the country, or b) the country is not letting in tourists from the UK?
We make decisions on the operability of our holidays seven days prior to departure, and if any of the above conditions meant you could not travel to your holiday destination we would offer you the choice of postponing your trip, rebooking to an alternative destination, or having a full refund.
What happens if the FCDO changes its advice to advise against non-essential travel to the country whilst I am there?
If the FCDO change to advising against non-essential travel, we will work to get you back to the UK as quickly as possible – if that is what you want. However, if you wish to continue your holiday, it is possible to travel against FCDO advice (it is only advice, not a legal requirement). However, you would need to talk to your travel insurers to check they were happy for you to continue your holiday, and to top-up your premium if necessary.
What happens if I test positive for Covid-19 and as a result I am in isolation on my planned departure date?
The trip would unfortunately have to be cancelled, with cancellation charges as per our terms & conditions; you would then make a claim on your travel insurance for these charges, and we would assist you by providing all necessary documentation for your insurers as quickly as possible.
What happens if I test positive for Covid-19 whilst on my holiday?
We have experience of dealing with this, having had clients catch Covid-19 when it first swept the world in February / March 2020. Medical costs, any quarantine / isolation related costs, and costs of rearranged onward travel would be a matter for your travel insurers. We would work with our local partners to keep you updated on next steps, to liaise with your insurers where necessary, and to make arrangements for the remainder of your holiday / getting you home once you are free to travel around again.
What happens if my holiday includes visits to more than one country, and non-essential travel to one of those countries is against FCDO advice?
We would (in consultation with you) rearrange your trip to just include the countries that were not subject to the FDCO advisory, and refund you for the services in that country. FCDO advice is just that though – advice, so, you do have the choice of keeping the trip as it is, and making sure your travel insurance will cover you for travelling against FCDO advice.
What happens if members of my party cannot be vaccinated against Covid-19 (for medical reasons, or because they are too young to have been called forward for vaccination), but vaccination is a requirement for entry into my holiday destination?
We would advise you not to book your trip until either the requirement for vaccination has changed, or all party members have been able to have the vaccination. Vaccinations are the responsibility of the client and normal cancellation charges as per our terms & conditions would apply if you were denied entry into the country because you were not vaccinated.
What happens if a country is open for travel and the FCDO is not advising against non-essential travel there, but I feel uncomfortable travelling there for my holiday?
We would work with you to see if we can ease your concerns: we have a lot of experience of sending clients on holidays, and an excellent understanding of what the situation is like “on the ground” thanks to our fantastic local partners, our own travels, and the feedback we get from our clients. If you are still concerned and you choose to cancel your holiday, you will be charged our standard cancellation charges as per our terms & conditions.