Are you looking for some tips before booking your first holiday in 2021 .., if so then read on.
After the chaos of last year with flights cancelled, refunds refused and people getting stranded, you could be forgiven for thinking that overseas travel this year would be a minefield.
But fear not, because booking a holiday to the Med, or somewhere else equally as sunny, needn’t be risky if you’re careful with how you do it, and follow official advice closely.
What will happen with the UK?
Depending on which country you live in, it’ll vary as to when international travel will resume. It seems 21st June is a date the English government is aiming for, but with so much uncertainty, it makes far more sense to give yourself some leeway and book your trip later in the summer – say August or September.
Tips before booking your first holiday in 2021
What about refunds?
The most important thing is to ensure that everything you pay for – flights, accommodation, car hire – is refundable. This might mean paying, say, a hotel website a little bit more for its fully refundable option – better that than spending thousands on a holiday that doesn’t happen.
An airline doesn’t have to refund you unless it cancels the flight itself, so again, check its cancellation policy.
If you’re using train travel within the UK, it might pay to be flexible by getting an anytime train ticket that allows you to use it when you need it.
And the safest option for overseas travel is to go all-inclusive, as you’ll be entitled to a full refund because you’re protected by the ATOL scheme.
What countries can you go to?
This is likely to change regularly, so the best way to keep up-to-date is to visit the Government’s foreign travel advice web pages. This will tell you which countries are allowing tourists from the UK. Even after you’ve booked, keep going back to this site to make sure there aren’t any nasty surprises for you at the airport.
What are the restrictions there?
Again, this can change at the drop of a plane ticket, so keep checking online for the latest information about that particular country. You’ll want to know if pubs, shops, cafes or even beaches are closed, and whether you might need to wear a mask while you’re out there. You’ll also want to know if there’s another outbreak of you-know-what in the region, so you can prepare for things being cancelled at the last minute.
So long as you take precautions, and double, triple and quadruple check the cancellation policies, you won’t risk losing your money by booking an overseas trip this year. In all likelihood, the holiday will go ahead and you might find it’s far quieter than in a normal year, so get in while you can!
Tips before booking your first holiday in 2021 is a feature post