Summer holidays: what you need to know about going on a green light

The Government has announced its much anticipated ‘Green List’ of twelve countries you can travel to after May 17th, without having to quarantine when you get back to England. But you’ll still need to take a Covid test before and after your trip.

But before we all get too excited; worth remembering that some places on that green list, including Australia and New Zealand aren’t open to UK tourists right now.

However a tiny glimmer of sunshine is starting to break through the grey Covid clouds, so here’s what you need to think about before booking a trip to a ‘green’ list destination.

Green can turn amber or red

The Government plans to review the list every three weeks, so if you book now for a ‘green’ destination that later turns amber or red, you can be out of pocket if you want to cancel, or decide to go, but have to fork out for an expensive ten day quarantine in a hotel if you’re returning from a red list country.

Book a package

How you book your trip determines the protection you get.

Booking a ‘package’ holiday automatically boosts your protection under the Package Travel Regulations.

This means if your ‘green’ holiday destination goes amber or red, tour operators may cancel your trip or let you rearrange, fee free, for a later date. But do check, as not all of them will do this.

No need to book an ‘off the peg’ package with a rep in resort for this. ‘Package Protection’ kicks in when you book two parts of your trip, at the same time, in one single payment, with the same company. So could be a flight plus one night’s accommodation or a day’s car hire.

If the holiday company cancel your trip; you’re entitled to a full refund within fourteen days.

Flexible bookings

With flight only deals; you don’t have the same protection so check if the airline has a ‘flexible’ booking policy.

Lots of airlines now offer this which enables you to rearrange flights at short notice, and just pay the difference in the ticket price, rather than any previously hefty charges.

And with places to stay check for flexible deals.

Check travel insurance

It’s an absolute essential for any holiday, (even in the UK as most policies offer valuable cancellation cover as standard), but it’s not blanket cover for everything.

Most insurers have tightened small print, especially with Covid related claims so check what’s covered before you pay up.

Posted in