A couple of months ago, I wrote a piece about what you needed to know about travel right at that moment. Well, it’s a new year, and things in the travel world are still evolving and changing. Vaccines are rolling out. There are new trends in travel and new regulations. It’s ok – it’s my job as your trusted travel advisor to keep up with all of this. But as you look towards planning your 2021 and 2022 vacations, there are some things you should know.

NEW REGULATIONS

There are over 50 countries that are open to the United States as of this writing. They all have their own rules and regulations for entry and exit. However, on January 12 an extra layer was added when the CDC signed an order requiring everyone entering the United States on an international flight, including U.S. residents and citizens, to present a negative Covid test taken within three days of departure before boarding their flights. Failure to present this test or proof of recovery from the virus will result in a denial of boarding.

Many resorts throughout the Caribbean are providing the tests on-property which will make it a lot easier for travelers.

You can read the CDC order HERE. There is also a good FAQ. As your travel advisor, I will help you maneuver through the process so that your vacation remains smooth and uninterrupted.

TIMING WHEN BOOKING YOUR TRIP IS EVERYTHING

Picking the right time to travel and when to book is important. Book too soon and you may have to contend with new and changing restrictions or closures. Wait too long and prices may rise as people get more travel desperate.

Your best bet? Book earlier rather than later – your travel advisor will help you if any changes need to be made. But booking early will help you lock in the better prices. And booking later in the year rather than sooner increases your chances of taking that great trip you so deserve.

BOOK CANCELLABLE/CHANGEABLE TRAVEL

While it’s tempting to book that cheaper, non-refundable hotel room or package, don’t. While hotels, resorts, and other suppliers are offering generous cancellation and refund policies, you need to read the fine print (and that’s what I am here for), because not all policies are created equal. Even as suppliers are introducing more flexibility in their terms and conditions, the non-refundable fares often are still more restrictive. By booking cancellable or changeable travel, you don’t have to stress as much about the timing of your trip. And airlines are making this so easy these days. Airlines such as Alaska, America, Delta, Hawaiian, and United have permanently eliminated change fees for standard economy and premium tickets.

BE FLEXIBLE

Trust me when I say destinations/countries/resorts do not want any of this either. They want travel open and back to normal. So to get to that point, you will see them changing their policies, working towards more traveler-friendly policies, i.e. test out policies rather than quarantines. These can change on a dime as we have seen with the new introduction of tests to fly into the United States. Be patient and flexible.

Horseshoe Bend, Colorado River, Arizona

Horseshoe Bend, Colorado River, Arizona

CONSIDER DOMESTIC TRAVEL

Amazing vacations can be found at home. Are you a resident of the United States? We are so full of history and beauty. Visit the national parks where you can spend time in the great outdoors and social distancing is most certainly not a problem. One of my favorite destinations that don’t involve a theme park is Sedona, AZ – an amazing natural playground for families of all ages. Are you a Canadian that can’t leave the country right now? How about a train trip through the Canadian Rockies on Rocky Mountaineer? The possibilities are endless. All you need to do is ask and I can make it all happen for you.

Seamless travel, especially internationally, will not return for some time. But that does not mean you need to stress or put off planning that amazing, dream vacation now. After all, the next best thing to taking a trip is planning a trip. Let’s have something to look forward to. Contact me and we can talk about how you can have a stress-free trip later this year or in 2022 because I can make that happen for you.