In today’s COVID-19 related world, there are various things you will need to consider before booking your next vacation.
As of now, masks are mandatory for all air travel, rail travel, and bus travel. They are also mandatory for most hotels, in public areas. Masks are also mandatory for Walt Disney World, Universal Studios, and many other venues. It appears masks will also be required in public areas on cruise ships. Physical distancing is also required.
Other things to consider are temperature checks several times a day on cruise ships, and COVID-19 testing before boarding a ship. Also, only vetted shore excursions will be allowed. Since physical distancing will be required, you will not be socializing with anyone other than your own party.
Some states have very stringent requirements for entry, and some even require 14 day quarantine. The same goes for some countries.
- Will you be able to put up with any protocols in place at the time of your vacation? Protocols can change at any time and could include having a COVID-19 test (or more than one); temperature checks; masks required (or not required); protocols for any state, country, or venue; states, countries, or venues not open to travel; a positive COVID-19 test; vaccine required; etc.
If you won’t go to somewhere masks aren’t required, know that while masks may be required now, they may not be required later. Same thing if you won’t go somewhere masks are required, this may or may not change, so even if you are planning travel late in 2021, masks may still be required.
- Will you be willing to let go of your deposit if rules change and you don’t like the changes?
You will want to look for refundable or low deposits, and a “final payment due” that is the fewest number of days from your trip. You may still lose if things change during the time your final payment is made and your actual trip.
- Travel Insurance isn’t covering COVID-19 issues. For example, if you are planning a cruise and you go to the terminal and end up testing positive, you AND your party will not be allowed to board the ship. Since COVID-19 is a known issue, typical travel insurance will NOT cover this loss. Some vendors are selling COVID-19 protection, so you may want to consider this option.
Know that there are some travel insurance policies that will cover COVID-19 issues, but not the standard policy. So, if you want medical coverage for COVID-19, and you will be outside the country, your Travel Advisor can help you find one suitable.
The big thing you must consider is if you are willing to live with any current rules OR any rule changes.
While some cruise lines have various special considerations in place, like cancelling up to 48 hours before departure, you will not get a refund, you will get a future credit. Also, you must have booked during a certain time period, and many of these time periods are expiring soon.
So, check with a Travel Advisor, like us, to be sure you know what could happen if things change. Travel Advisors are there to help you make the decision that is right for you and your circumstances.