Coronavirus: What to do about your travel plans?
With the Coronavirus outbreak affecting global travel, there are headlines, information and mis-information coming in from all directions causing panic and confusion. Combine that with Easter school holidays heading towards us, and one area (of many) that seems to be playing on people’s minds is what to do about planned or proposed trips.
In amongst individual opinions, news coverage and changing environmental situations, there is genuine concern for the welfare of each other and it’s hard to know what the right step to take is.
The reality of course, is that the advice and situation is changing daily, so we’ve compiled some sources of advice that we’ve found useful along with some helpful suggestions of how to prepare for changing travel plans that we thought would be worth sharing.
1: For the latest information and advice relating to both the travel itself and the situation at your destination, a good website to head to is: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/travel-advice-novel-coronavirus. You’ll find the latest recommendations on travel from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO), latest advice on coronavirus from the Department of Health & Social care and you’ll also be able to sign up to email alerts relating to each specific destination.
2: Before you travel, it’s worth finding out the nearest British embassy or consulate to your destination and storing their contact details and information in case you need them in an emergency. You’ll find their details here: https://www.gov.uk/world/embassies
3: If you haven’t already, get travel insurance that covers you for travel disruptions and medical expenses should the need arise and make sure you have checked with your own provider their provisions if your trip is impacted in any way by Coronavirus. It’s worth noting that your travel insurance is likely to become invalidated if you travel against advice issued by the FCO. The Association of British Insurers, have a Q&A and a members pledge on Coronavirus that is worth referring to: https://www.abi.org.uk/products-and-issues/topics-and-issues/coronavirus-qa/
4: If you are travelling, it’s worth ensuring that you have access to funds to cover emergencies if the situation arises. For example, it might be worth looking at increasing your overdraft limit or taking out a credit card to cover this eventuality.
5: Share your travel itinerary with friends and families, and make sure that you’ve stored your travel insurance policy documents and details securely online and give access to those details to someone at home in case they need to help (you can store all of this information securely online with Lifefyle for free, and if you want to give access to additional users you can do so with Lifefyle’s premium account, which costs £4.99 a month). Click here to download the app from the app store.
6. If you are booking a trip, it's advisable to try and book a flexible fare, which will allow you to make cancellations, changes or postponements if necessary. Check the conditions of sale before you purchase.
7. For other travel advice and to stay on top of the latest, keep an eye on: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice
Above all, just be confident in your own judgement about making the best decision for you and your family, which of course will vary according to your individual situation, health of travellers and how affected or not your destination is by Coronavirus.
Stay safe x