Staying Safe When Travelling Abroad: Common Questions Answered

Lockdown restrictions are being eased, and countries across the globe are beginning to reopen. So the question is: how are we all supposed to feel about planning travel again?

Firstly, it’s worth noting that if you don’t feel comfortable about the thought of heading to an airport, flying on a plain and jetting off to a warmer country, you shouldn’t have to. Many countries are still remaining closed for what they class as ‘nonessential travellers’ and non-residents. Although in general, most are starting to fully reopen.

If you are however, getting rather itchy feet and are keen to get some Summer sun and visit a country other than the UK (lets face it, a lot of us will be fed up of our surroundings), then here’s some answers to common questions around travelling that may help you make a safe decision.

Am I allowed to travel to Italy?

At the height of the pandemic, Italy shot up as one of the countries having the highest increases of Covid19. However, their numbers slowed down faster than that of the UK, and Italy is now reopen for travellers after a long time closed.

However, it’s understandable that many people may want to avoid for a little longer, which opens up opportunities for travel to surrounding beauty spots, like the Amalfi Coast and Sicily.

Sicily is a place that was always on my list even before the pandemic, but seems more appealing to me now that I probably won’t be quite ready to trip to Italy and indulge in all the pasta at Bologna. It’s known for it’s dreamy landscapes of rolling hills, stunning weather, shimmering seas, and beautiful sloping valleys. If you’re a fan of walking and mountain towns, you’re also said to be suited to Sicily.

If you do look into going, Sicily tours are a surefire way to explore the place without missing any beauty spots and treasured locations.

Can I rent cars and take road trips to other countries?

Many people are discussing the option of driving to European cities from the UK, instead of choosing to fly. This comes from the discussions that renting a car tends to offer much fewer risks of catching or spreading Covid-19 than you would when jumping on a flight. For one, you’re confided into a car with people you have been around before (ideally, like your partner or family), and you’re exposed to far fewer people.

Most car rental companies are open to renting cars out for road trips, all around Europe, as deep cleaning measurements are now set in place. It might be that there are less cars available due to many of them being left in deep cleaning for 72 hours after a rental car is returned, but overall, it shouldn’t cause a problem.

What about holiday rentals like Air BnB?

Yes, holiday rentals are now starting to re-open abroad, letting travellers book a cottage, apartment or holiday home for their stay. However, because these are usually ran by people who have second homes or live in the property themselves, you may find they are not as fully available as they used to be.

For example, in America, many states temporarily banned Airbnb and other short-term letting property options, for a long period of time. These bans are now starting to lift but it is up to the person who owns the property when they feel ready to open.

You may find when browsing sites like Air BnB, there are less options available to you. If you land lucky and find a lovely property you can rent out, do keep in mind that the short-term rental may still comes with restrictions, such as the number of people they are letting stay at one time.

Should I realistically avoid flying for a while?

Health authorities have continuously been saying that the risk of infection on airplanes is currently very low. There are often concerns about the cabin air being more risky, but it actually has very clever filters which are great at blocking out up to 99% of airborne microbes. The hygiene and cleaning rules on flights will be extremely strict and to the best standard, so you can expect a high level of cleanliness.

One thing you may find is that certain seats – like middle seats – or rows have been made unavailable, to encourage people to sit further apart. This means that flights will be taking less passengers, so you may find flight prices rising or having more of a struggle to book as many people on.

Remember that if you choose to fly, or travel by train or car, wearing a mask is really important to preventing the spread. If you adhere to the rules and stay vigilant, there shouldn’t be any reason why you should have to miss out on going abroad this year.

What are your thoughts? Do you feel ready to jet off abroad?

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