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Useful Information and Updated Terms & Conditions for International Travel with COVID-19
International Travel is likely to have restrictions and a variety of Covid-19 protocols and checks for many months to come. It is therefore important that you read and understand how this might affect you if you intend to travel in the months to come and confirm and accept the advice and terms contained herein.
This document contains information and advice on what to expect before, during and after your travel which we hope will be helpful. It also contains clarification of how some of our terms would apply to this specific situation of travelling in a Covid pandemic as well as updated terms specifically related to the guidance and legislation the Irish Government has introduced around travel and the adoptions of the EU COVID-19 Vaccine Passport.
Despite the advice we are giving you on restrictions and interruptions that may occur, we do hope that you will enjoy your holiday as we are likely to have to holiday this way for some while.
Before you Travel
It is possible that the destination you have chosen to travel to, may change its requirements for entry between booking and travelling.
It is also possible that the Irish Government assessment of travel risks to your chosen destination may change on multiple occasions between booking and travelling. This is explained further in this document under Travel Guidance.
It is your responsibility to make sure that you are compliant with any rules regarding leaving the country, entering your destination and arriving back into Ireland. This is, and will continue to be, a dynamically changing landscape as the worldwide vaccine programmes roll out, surges occur in certain countries and variants of concern are discovered or are categorised as non-concerning.
The best source of information on these requirements comes directly from the Irish Governments main travel advice site:
We will try to assist as much as we can, but it is ultimately your responsibility to make sure you are compliant with all travel requirements.
Whilst not an exclusive list, you should ensure you comply with any requirements for:
- Visa / declarations pre travel for your destination
- Covid test requirements – paying particular attention to timescales pre travel
- Airline declarations and information on travel
- Airline meal pre-ordering
- Vaccine proof if required
At the Airport
It is highly likely that your airport experience will differ from historical experiences. You should ensure you leave sufficient time for any airport additional checks. Your airline will publish ideal guides on how long to give yourself for check in as they will not want you to leave too little time nor arrive far too early.
Some changes may include, but will not be limited to:
- Social distancing measures
- Facemask wearing
- Longer queues
- Restricted facilities
- Restricted restaurant menus and goods for sale in some outlets
- Proof of documentation completion
- Proof of vaccines/Covid test results
Your airport experience on arrival at both your destination and re-entering Ireland may also see further disruptions with additional Covid protocols and checks which may cause delays.
On Board Your Aircraft
Your experience on board may differ to past experiences. Airlines are trying to keep the experience as good as usual, but there may well be restrictions that affect you such as:
- Cabin service restrictions due to social distancing
- Face mask wearing
- Restricted menus for food and beverages
In Your Hotel
Hotels may not be able to deliver their full experience as advertised due to Covid restrictions either directly or indirectly (e.g., caused by a decline in occupancy or social distancing measures):
Changes in your experience may include, but not restricted to:
- Non availability of some facilities
- Reduced availability of some facilities
- Reduced restaurant capacity
- Reduced choice of restaurants
- Reduced menu choices for food and beverage
- Face mask wearing
At Your Destination
It is possible that there will be Covid based restrictions at your destination with rules set locally by the relevant country or region. This may include:
- Restricting movement around the area
- Closure or restriction of some entertainment facilities
- Reduction in capacity of entertainment facilities
- Local Covid restrictions, protocols and testing
- Face mask wearing
Operation of Holidays
We are intending to operate all holidays as soon as legally permitted from Ireland.
Holidays will be subject to the Irish Government “Covid Travel Guidance” policies explained extensively below.
It is important that you note:
- We will plan to operate all holidays no matter what the current guidance status.
- We may have to cancel your holiday at any stage for any reason if we cannot deliver it as planned. If this occurs you will be entitled to a refund but not compensation for cancellation
- Cancellation decisions may occur at a very late stage pre departure as we are in a dynamically changing situation
You will need to pay in full for your holiday by the due date unless you defer your arrangements
before this date.
If you are disinclined to travel, you will need to let us know as soon as possible. We will then be able to look at alternative destinations or dates for you and re-price a replacement trip for you. The later you leave the decision, the more likely we will have to also comply with partners terms and not just our own which may restrict our flexibility.
Our promise is that we will be as flexible as possible over this recovery period. However, if you require changes very close to your planned departure, partners, in particular airlines may not be in the position to offer refunds or alterations to plans as we would wish. An example of this would be if an airline continues to operate their flights on dates you were originally booked for and the tickets were issued and fully paid for. You may not be entitled to a refund from the airline or at best only be given a credit against a future flight to be utilised in a specific time frame.
Therefore, our advice is be certain as far in advance as you can that you are happy to travel with some of these potential restrictions. If you are hesitant in any way, then you should discuss with us any deferral of travel plans or change in destination you wish. The sooner we do this the more flexible we can be. It is easier to change your plans and bring them forward if you change your mind again rather than to unpick a holiday at the last minute once all hotels and airlines are fully paid for.
Important Note: Any Covid tests required by the Irish Government or your travel destination will be at your own expense as will any formal quarantine costs. It is also vital you ensure you have extensive valid travel insurance that covers you to travel to your chosen destination and includes cover for Covid related incidents.
“Covid Travel Guidance” Categories
From 19th July, new advice and rules for international travel came into effect in Ireland.
The “Covid Travel Guidance” category system is detailed below as well as our decision and terms of operation in these categories. It is very important you read and understand how we will operate in these categories and how that may affect you in terms of covid testing requirements and potential quarantine.
There are now three categories of destinations;
- Quarantine Free Destinations
- Self-Isolation Destinations
- ‘Designated States’ Destinations (www.gov.ie/en/publication/b4020-travelling-to-ireland-during-the-covid-19-pandemic/#designated-states-mandatory-hotel-quarantine)
Quarantine Free destinations
Travel is permitted with no quarantine requirements on return to Ireland subject to either presentation of a Digital Covid Certificate or Covid testing before you travel, before your return and after your return home. Individual countries will vary in their approach but will usually require either a test on arrival or proof of a test taken before departing Ireland.
We plan to operate all holidays in this category.
Travel is permitted with Covid testing before you travel, before your return and after your return home. Individual countries will vary in their approach but will usually require either a test on arrival or proof of a test taken before departing Ireland. Self-isolation will be required on your return to Ireland. This is currently 14 days, but there is the possibility of reducing to 5 days with an additional Covid test.
We plan to operate all holidays in this category.
‘Designated States’ Destinations
Conditions are again as per Self Isolation Destination, but significantly you will be required to quarantine on your return to Ireland for 14 days in a government specified hotel at an additional cost of €1,875 per person.
We will plan to operate all holidays in this category as over time it is highly likely that countries will continue to move towards the Quarantine free destinations.
However, if the destination remains in this category with no expectation of a change 14 days before your departure date, we will enforce a cancelation of your holiday as we would consider this a material change to delivering your holiday as planned. There may be other circumstances that cause us to make the decision earlier, and if so, we will explain that to you at the time.
If you specifically request in writing for us to continue with your holiday where your destination remains on the Designated States list, understanding the costs and implications of your quarantine on return to Ireland, we will operate your holiday for you if we are able to and if permitted by the Government.
Destinations Moving Between Categories
As this is such a dynamic situation, it is highly likely that some destinations will move between the categories between your booking and departing for your trip.
If this happens, we will still operate and plan to operate your holiday as explained in the “Covid Travel Guidance” Categories system notes, even if your destination slips into a Quarantine required status.
If of course at any stage you change your mind, we will of course be happy to look at modifying your travel plans for you.
‘Designated States’ & Other enforced Covid-19 Cancellations
Unfortunately, if we are forced to cancel your holiday due to your destination being on the ‘Designated States’ close to your departure date and you’re choosing not to travel under those circumstances, or if for other operational matters we feel we cannot fulfil your holiday, you will have the following choices:
Rebook an alternative date or destination. Your new requirements will be re-priced based on what you would like to do and when you would like to travel. Depending on your chosen date, we will re-calculate your deposit due and return your balance of funds to you.
Credit Notes are available if you would prefer us to simply hold your funds until you have time to consider what dates or destination you would like to rebook.
Refund in full or part will be available if you prefer. In the vast majority of circumstances, a full refund can be provided. In a few cases we may be only able to offer a partial refund and a credit with a partner. This is particularly the case if we have fully paid and ticketed your planned trip with the airline as they are being permitted in certain circumstances to only provide a credit rather than a refund.
Category Destination changes whist on Holiday
It is possible that your destination may move within the Category guidance whilst you are away.
This may have implications on re-entering Ireland as described in the “Covid Travel Guidance” Categories. It is your responsibility to comply with any changes and any implications including incremental costs of quarantine which will be at your own risk and expense. We strongly advise you check your travel insurance policy to ensure you have adequate cover for such circumstances.
It is highly likely that you will be able to complete your holiday as planned. We would contact you to
confirm or advise any change in arrangements needed such as an airline schedule change requiring a
change in your planned return date. Again, you should ensure you have adequate travel insurance
to cover this circumstance as any additional costs of an extended or curtailed stay would be at your
expense. Due to hotel terms, it is also unlikely any refund would be due for shortened stays.
We hope this additional information regarding travelling internationally during a Covid-19 affected world, along with interpretations of our terms and conditions relating to travel with Covid along with the guide to the Irish Government “Covid Travel Guidance” Categories has been helpful. If you have any questions, please contact your travel advisor.
Publication date: 21/07/2021