"Let's getaway" Are you hearing that little voice in your head?? It sure was for me the last few months. While I try to stay FOCUSED FORWARD and not dwell on my trip dates that passed with me staring at my computer screen or sitting hours on hold...IT WAS TIME for me (maybe you've seen the meme of the girl putting her luggage on the nordic track-yep, that's me about now- how about you??)
Getting creative, my amazing husband and MY travel advisor, John Murphy, designed the perfect weekend getaway a few weeks ago complete with my favorite private driver of all time. We took several day trips in a convertible with cool lunch stops in Bay St. Louis, Ocean Springs and Madisonville. Not quite the Italy or Greece trips I had planned, but it was WONDERFUL for where we are right now.
I bet you can do the same wherever you are located, take a road trip within a couple hours of your home until you are ready to venture to the skies.
I am so very happy to share about some clients that were REALLY ABLE TO GO...OFF TO PARADISE ... a precious honeymoon couple kept their travel plans to ANTIGUA (correction-when their original honeymoon to Jamaica was cancelled 2 weeks before travel, they were heartbroken and still wanted to get away, so we were able to revise their honeymoon destination to Antigua since its borders were open. After receiving all of their texts and facebook posts, we can't really imagine the honeymoon in Jamaica because Antigua turned out to be just PERFECT. I was in contact with from the moment they left home until arriving back home. They had nothing but wonderful, positive, thankful texts (including the travel days). I was so very happy for them!!
Can you EVEN IMAGINE how wonderful your first getaway will be? It will be completely incredible BUT please read my article below about some travelers we read about and how to help make sure this doesn't happen to you.
WHY USING A TRAVEL ADVISOR IS EVEN MORE IMPORTANT POST COVID . . .
Everyone is asking....Do I stay or do I go? Some countries are opening (the Caribbean) some flights are flying, yet other countries are not lifting the travel ban on the US. There are conflicting headlines, news stories, articles and sources. The short answer is it purely a personal decision that only you can make.
IF YOU DO decide the time is right for you, let's be sure you have all the facts (as we know them today). Please hire a travel advisor. We are getting updates and following it minute by minute from trusted sources.
An example, the headline may read "Caribbean borders are open", before you pick up the mouse, please consult your travel advisor ...there are different opening dates, many different restrictions and some hoops that must be jumped through prior. One example below:
Antigua, Mexico and Jamaica just opened its borders to international travelers. So WHY were there 30 people stranded at the Miami airport, denied boarding onto their ticketed flight to Montego Bay on June 16? Because they did not know that there is a new Travel Authorization Form, a medical clearance that must be applied for online prior to travel, that is collected by the airport staff BEFORE you can get on any plane bound for Jamaica.
Why did I include that depressing story? Because I care about you and your travel dollars and that of your friends as well. I would say that it is MORE IMPORTANT THAN EVER as travel begins to reopen around the world in our post-COVID world. In today's times, it's just too risky to DIY your travel. A travel advisor would have informed those travelers of the new restrictions and given the link to apply for and print the new Authorization form well before departure.
It's simply what we do!
As we all start to navigate the new travel climate:
1. Just because you CAN doesn't mean that you SHOULD. We have the resources to stay up to date on ever-changing entry and quarantine requirements from every destination. Policies are literally changing moment-by-moment and it is important to know the risks of finding yourself in an unexpected quarantine situation. Also, just because a resort or island is "open", what is the actual experience going to be like? Are masks required? Are all the facilities and amenities open? Will the kid's club and waterparks be operational? Without buffets, what are the food and beverage options? We can get that info for you to avoid expensive disappointments!
2. We have intel to stay current on which travel partners are trustworthy and fiscally sound. We certainly can't guarantee there won't be any surprises, but we have connections that keep us informed and are there for us when needed. Most importantly, you won't face it alone.
3. We are part of a MUCH larger network of advisors, so we hear about which resorts, airlines and destinations are going above and beyond to adapt post-COVID wellness policies to protect your health and well-being. And which ones are NOT. We want you to feel safe and secure wherever you may travel.
4. We do have some ultra luxe LUXURY connections and private drivers scattered across the USA until the borders are open to us to fly across the pond! There are some totally mind-blowingly beautiful destinations and resorts right here in our own country.
I'm definitely not saying don't fly to wherever you want and feel ready to go. I'm simply saying, let's make sure you have all the facts so that it is the travel experience you've been dreaming of. We would LOVE to help you get out of your house and live again - safely and when you are ready, we will be here.
5. As you've come to count on us in the past, we are available to you before, during and after your travels...kind of like a personal backup system! If you run into any hiccups or need reassurance while away from home, we are your first call!! Delayed/Cancelled flights? Text us while you wait in line with the airline and we can try to get you rebooked before you even reach the desk. Is your "ocean view" suite actually overlooking some construction? Let us work out a relocation with the front desk if they don't respond to your request. Don't risk your hard earned travel dollars and PTO to a mouse and computer screen. A travel advisor is always your best advocate because they truly CARE!!
When you are ready to take your dreams to reality, we are here for you!