Holidays: Spring bookings ‘not as risky as you think’ – expert shares how to plan travel

Priti Patel reveals government’s new travel quarantine rules

Booking holidays is supposed to be an exciting business but international travel is currently more fraught than ever. Yesterday, Home Secretary Priti Patel and Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced authorities were clamping down on non-essential travel. What’s more, anyone returning from a list of 30 countries will have to quarantine for 10 days at their own expense.

Needless to say, it’s all a little bleak – will we ever be able to get away on holiday?

James Lynn, co-CEO and co-founder of travel debit card Currensea, told that the future isn’t as black as it might seem.

In fact, he said in his travel advice that booking a holiday is not as “risky” as the news might suggest.

What’s more, there are some excellent deals to snap up right now.

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“At the moment there is still a lot of uncertainty around when we will be able to begin travelling abroad again,” Lynn said.

“However, while reading the news might convince you otherwise, booking a holiday – even in these times – isn’t as risky as you might think.

“Flights and hotels are excellent value at the moment thanks to the numerous sales, driven by this uncertainty.

“Alongside the fact that airlines and hotels are becoming more and more flexible in order to encourage you to keep booking, you can save money on a trip by booking now and then moving it out if need be.”

Of course, holidaymakers still need to be careful with how they go about booking a getaway.

“There are a few important steps I would recommend in the case of holiday and flight cancellations,” Lynn warned.

“Before booking a holiday be sure to avoid paying a deposit and always check the refund policy on flights or accommodation before you book.

“In particular, avoid companies that offer vouchers instead of flex-bookings or cash refunds because it can be impossible to get your money back if the company is then to, unfortunately, go out of business, or if you decide you no longer want to go on the holiday at all.”

Unlike some other travel experts, Lynn does not advocate package holidays in the current climate.

“I would also caution people to stay away from package holidays at the moment as refunds and rebooking can prove tricky if dealing with a ‘middle man’ and not directly with the hotels and flight operators themselves,” he said.

Anyone with a trip in the diary for should hold onto the booking and see how the land lies at the time.

You may well end up making some good savings by doing this.

“If you already have a holiday booked for the Spring my advice would be not to cancel your trip but if the T&Cs allow it, hold out until closer to the time,” said Lynn.

“If a holiday isn’t then possible, move your flight to a later date when things will have hopefully settled.

“This could save you a lot of cash if you booked your original flights in the last few months when they were good value.

“Just think of how much travel costs will increase when it is announced that travel is safe again and everybody is making bookings at once!”

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