Travel disruption is still rampant, there are plenty of travel restrictions which vary from state-to-state, region-to-region and country-to-country. Barriers put in place because of the pandemic.
Rules on conduct have also changed in many of the popular vacation spots. While some regions are still banning larger social gatherings. If these issues weren’t enough, you also have to contend with the epic number of people trying to get away on a vacation to make up for the fact they didn’t get one last year. There is a lot to deal with, so here are five tips to get you started.
1 – Shop Around for Cheap Deals
Vacation agents are desperate for customers, overseas hotels are going out of business, they are crying out for customers and they are prepared to offer low discount prices just to get you through the door. Now is the time to shop around for the best deals, which includes trying websites and companies that you wouldn’t otherwise think of trying. By all means, try the major comparison websites, the travel review companies and the big travel agents, but also try the smaller websites, the classified adverts, and even social media.
Use Online VPN and try a few of the old VPN cheap deal tricks. If you are unfamiliar with such tricks, you simply sign into your VPN service, you pick a server in your own country, and try searching for vacation, hotel and airline prices again. Then, try another server in your country, and run another search. Then, try a server in a different country and run the same searches again. Be sure to clear your cookies and temp files before you try each search. This still works because airlines, hotels, and travel agents still offer different prices to people in different areas, states, and in different countries. It all has something to do with local taxes, local rules, currency differences, and good-old fashioned price favoritism.
Heavy competition is another reason why regional pricing is different. You may ask why you should try VPN servers in your own country, but the reason is due to heavy competition. One state may have very few travel agents offering trips to the Black Sea, and so has very high prices. Another state may have several competitors offering trips to the Black Sea, so their prices are far lower. In a post Covid world, shopping around is still king (at least for now until the travel industry has fully recovered).
2 – Take Disposable Items on Vacation With You
Forget the articles that claim you should take buckets of hand sanitizer, cases full of toilet roll, and how you should take wet wipes for chairs and surfaces. If you are healthy, you will be fine. What you need to do is keep things disposable. Here are a few disposable ideas.
- Disposable Masks
- Paper plates
- Drinks containers
- Overalls or coveralls
Do not take your cloth masks that you wear at home. Take disposable ones where you can throw it away after a day of use. People are taking their favorite custom-cloth masks, and they are forgetting that they will be covered in sea spray, in wildlife matter, splashes from food, and that they will be caked with sweat by the end of the day. You cannot launder your cloth masks, so you are stuck with a very dirty mask all your vacation–unless you take disposable masks.
Don’t take disposable cutlery, especially since you can buy it when you get there. Do consider buying paper plates when you get there, especially if you are self-catering and will be doing some of your eating in your hotel room, cabin, caravan, or tent.
3 – Have Backup Plans and Be Prepared to be Flexible
There is still a fair amount of disruption in the vacation world. As people flock to start enjoying themselves, some places are experiencing shortages. The weird thing is that it is very unexpected things that are short, such as cane sugar in some parts of America, salt in some parts of Europe, and butter in the Middle East. Slowdowns in production of Chlorine and Aluminum are having a knock-on effect that affects supply. In short, try to be flexible, especially if local merchants and vacation-based businesses cannot provide everything they would normally provide.
Backup plans are also required because there is still a lot of travel disruption. It is partially due to the reforming of transport and supply lines, but also because of the odd peak and trough travel numbers. Sudden rushes of travelers cannot be handled, whereas sudden lulls are causing further disruption. It is almost as if people are trying to rush out and have a vacation before the next splash of bad pandemic news hit. People are trying to rush out and take a vacation to make up for not having one last year, and it is putting a strain on travel companies as they try to re-normalize their process.
It is a good idea to have a backup plan, especially if your planned location has wishy-washy entrance barriers. Double check permissions and Covid travel barriers prior to going and keep up to date with the news in your planned location area. Don’t forget that it isn’t just your hotel and/or resort that matters, find out what the rules are in the local town and local area. You may discover things like how you cannot sit in the front of a taxi, which may sound fine, but what if there are four of you needing a lift? It pays to know these things in advance so that you can plan better.
Have backup plans set up at home too. Plan for extended stays, which may mean having people take care of your pets for longer, or having people check in on your house. Having somebody at home during a crisis is also good. They can help you be sending money, or by offering information that they pulled from national websites.
4 – Learn All the Contact Free Methods Available
In many cases, the contactless methods make life more convenient, but not if you are completely unaware of them. You may think you can buy your bottled water with cash, only to discover that the local stores only accept card payments with contactless features. You may want to buy the souvenir maps and digital content at the local gift shops, but they only accept payments through mobile apps.
Things become a little more tricky when certain stores and/or attractions have removed any sort of customer participation. Instead of picking what you want, you need to tell the person behind the desk. The trouble is that you do not know the language and there isn’t very much to point at. This is another situation where knowing the local contactless methods beforehand is a good idea.
What are the local and public rules. Does the vacation beach demand that you wear a mask? Are you allowed in the pools? Are sections of toilet stalls or toilet holes taped off? Does the attraction you plan to visit have a restriction on how many people may enter at once? Knowing how many people may enter an attraction at each time may not seem like a big deal, unless you have kids and your group cannot be safely separated while you experience the attraction.
5 – Get The Right Type of Insurance
You are looking for added travel insurance for two situations. The first is added insurance to help you get home if there is a travel disruption. For example, if the Indian version of the virus spreads around your vacation town, you need the sort of insurance that allows you to rent a car to get to the next airport and take a different flight.
The second type of insurance you need is added health and medical insurance. Covid is pretty weak sauce in terms of viruses and is far less deadly than regular flu. However, if you are in a weakened state or are already ill, then Covid can be deadly. You may not have the sort of health problems that puts you in the high-risk category, but what about when you get there? We have all had experiences with strange or poorly cooked food that leaves us ill for days. Imagine getting a dose of foreign-food poisoning, and then getting Covid while in Hospital. Surviving will cost you a fortune, and that is where added travel insurance helps.
What if you experience a strange type of tick bite parasite, or get Malaria, or you are bitten by a foreign snake. You are going to become ill, and this leaves you open to really suffering when you get Covid. Even though Covid and your new illness may not kill you, the fact you get Covid is going to extend your recovery time. You may miss your flights and spend added time in hospital. This is going to be costly, which is why you need added insurance.