Saffer traveller in the time of Covid

Goatman

ADC
Book Reviewer

Overall, though, there was a sense of solidarity, as travellers invited each other to tag along as their plus ones to gain access to Doha’s business class lounge during the layover. If only. On arrival at Hamad International Airport, we were – without explanation – escorted off the plane, past the usual transfers route, to an empty area of the airport that I can only describe as a holding pen. Our temperatures were checked and those with immediate ongoing flights were escorted directly to their gates. The process was disorganised. Many of us were now on hour 15 of our journeys and the atmosphere was fraught. So much so, one man tried to jump the barriers and make a run for it. He didn’t get very far. Eventually, those with business class tickets or British Airways Gold Cards (like me) were released and escorted to the lounges – a move which one passenger noted to the officials, defeated the point. I kept silent, grateful to be able to have somewhere to shower, lie down and get at least a couple of hours’ sleep.

While scientists in South Africa were the first to discover the new variant, it does not necessarily mean it originated from there. By any measure, the country has done an exceptional job at researching and disclosing new variants and there needs to be a system in place to ensure no one is penalised for future announcements. The speed at which the new restrictions were put in place has not only left many travellers stranded without warning, but shutting borders has meant another blow to the country’s already battered tourism industry. There might not be a right answer to all of this, but there should be a procedure in place to allow solidarity in tackling the pandemic together.

I am now on day two of my 10-day at-home quarantine and all the drama aside, my long-awaited trip to South Africa might have ended abruptly, but it was wonderful to be back and to see my family at a time when I don’t take anything for granted.
 

Camm1

LE
I was planning to visit second week in Jan. I can cancel everything other than the flights. I haven't cancelled yet as I'm hoping the Omicron variant is is less dangerous and the red listing gets dropped ( I know its unlikely!).
I'm not sure where I stand on the flight issue. They are Virgin tickets but I booked them via Skyscanner. I doubt I can get a refund but I'm hoping I can change the dates otherwise I'm £2.5k in the hole.
 
”While scientists in South Africa were the first to discover the new variant, it does not necessarily mean it originated from there. By any measure, the country has done an exceptional job at researching and disclosing new variants and there needs to be a system in place to ensure no one is penalised for future announcements. The speed at which the new restrictions were put in place has not only left many travellers stranded without warning, but shutting borders has meant another blow to the country’s already battered tourism industry. There might not be a right answer to all of this, but there should be a procedure in place to allow solidarity in tackling the pandemic together”

I take the point that it might not mean it did originate from South Africa, but when two flights with 300 passengers from South Africa land at a Dutch airport and 61 passengers are found to be infected with covid, 13 of them with this new variant, it does make people wonder just exactly what measures the South Africans are taking firstly to stop the virus being exported abroad because it seems like they are doing almost nothing given these figures and secondly what do else do they really think others should be doing to try and prevent the infection spreading?

No measures whatsoever?!
 
it does make people wonder just exactly what measures the South Africans are taking firstly to stop the virus being exported abroad because it seems like they are doing almost nothing given these figures and secondly what do else do they really think others should be doing to try and prevent the infection spreading?

No measures whatsoever?!
Nail on head, twice.
The latest action in the fight against Covid is... give people shopping vouchers when they get jabbed.
Yep, and 35% of the adult population is double jabbed.
NOTE that is 35% and Adult.
 
I'm due to fly home to SA the end of next week. Hopefully they decide things are not as dire as they thought and allow flights in there. Been away getting on for four months now.

From what I've been reading, a few cases in Europe where little or no contact with travellers from SA has taken place. Probably worth sniffing about to isolate patient zero. AFAIK, one of the earlier variants was pinged and described in SA but already around elsewhere.
 
I was planning to visit second week in Jan. I can cancel everything other than the flights. I haven't cancelled yet as I'm hoping the Omicron variant is is less dangerous and the red listing gets dropped ( I know its unlikely!).
I'm not sure where I stand on the flight issue. They are Virgin tickets but I booked them via Skyscanner. I doubt I can get a refund but I'm hoping I can change the dates otherwise I'm £2.5k in the hole.

It usually depends on whether you book directly with the airline, or through a third party.

Through an airline direct and you have all the cancellation benefits they offer.

Through a third party and the airline will usually say, "tough luck matey, our deal is with third party not with you, don't even bother speaking to us". Happened to me once, booked with airlines directly ever since.

Do you have travel insurance, or insurance that covers travel?
 
I'm due to fly home to SA the end of next week. Hopefully they decide things are not as dire as they thought and allow flights in there. Been away getting on for four months now.

From what I've been reading, a few cases in Europe where little or no contact with travellers from SA has taken place. Probably worth sniffing about to isolate patient zero. AFAIK, one of the earlier variants was pinged and described in SA but already around elsewhere.
Yeh, I thought I saw something about it floating around Belgium in October.
It is a bit harsh on a country just for detecting it - not detecting it elsewhere could simply be that there was little testing.
HAving said that, there must have been a fair few cases, so it makes sense to stop travel outwards, at least to start with.

Good luck to you, guv'nor!
 
It usually depends on whether you book directly with the airline, or through a third party.

Through an airline direct and you have all the cancellation benefits they offer.

Through a third party and the airline will usually say, "tough luck matey, our deal is with third party not with you, don't even bother speaking to us". Happened to me once, booked with airlines directly ever since.

Do you have travel insurance, or insurance that covers travel?
Well.....l had tickets on Delta, purchased in January 2020 through Delta for a convention that was supposed to take place in May 2020. The convention was canceled and Delta would not refund, best they would do is offer a travel voucher for another flight to anywhere in the continental US good for one year. Problem is you couldn't enter the US from Canada unless it was for business until just recently and l had no business excuse to justify travel. Purchasing tickets directly from the airline is a guarantee of absolutely nothing.
 
Well.....l had tickets on Delta, purchased in January 2020 through Delta for a convention that was supposed to take place in May 2020. The convention was canceled and Delta would not refund, best they would do is offer a travel voucher for another flight to anywhere in the continental US good for one year. Problem is you couldn't enter the US from Canada unless it was for business until just recently and l had no business excuse to justify travel. Purchasing tickets directly from the airline is a guarantee of absolutely nothing.

The issue you describe here was not instigated/caused by the airline so why should it have to give a refund - Did it break the terms under which the ticket was purchased?
Since I started booking flights online myself in around 2006, I make a point of checking the terms. They differ from airline to airline and from ticket class to ticket class. It's a bind but what can you do.
I prefer a free and competitive market where you pay your money per your choice.
 
The issue you describe here was not instigated/caused by the airline so why should it have to give a refund - Did it break the terms under which the ticket was purchased?
Since I started booking flights online myself in around 2006, I make a point of checking the terms. They differ from airline to airline and from ticket class to ticket class. It's a bind but what can you do.
I prefer a free and competitive market where you pay your money per your choice.
They should have to give a refund as cancelation was included within the terms of the purchase. Delta altered it’s policy after covid started knowing full well those who purchased tickets in Canada had no legal recourse that made financial sense, spending more money going to court than what the tickets worth is pointless.
 
I'm surprised they're getting away with that - if they broke the contractual obligation. All the European/UK/Israeli airlines I had tickets with eventually gave me a refund for the flights they cancelled due to Corona, even if it took some of them many months. I reckon they knew that if they want to continue operating in Israel/Europe, they'd have to conform with the law.
 
I'm surprised they're getting away with that - if they broke the contractual obligation. All the European/UK/Israeli airlines I had tickets with eventually gave me a refund for the flights they cancelled due to Corona, even if it took some of them many months. I reckon they knew that if they want to continue operating in Israel/Europe, they'd have to conform with the law.
The US government ruled offering tickets to other destinations in lieu of refunds was legitimate as large scale refunds would cause detrimental effects to the airlines. In other words the government didn’t want to have to do large bailouts.
 

Goatman

ADC
Book Reviewer
Yeh, I thought I saw something about it floating around Belgium in October.
It is a bit harsh on a country just for detecting it - not detecting it elsewhere could simply be that there was little testing.
HAving said that, there must have been a fair few cases, so it makes sense to stop travel outwards, at least to start with.
Colleague based in Jo'Burg said exactly that this am .

Wossname: idiots.. once a variant has been identified, it's already all over the place...travel bans won't do anyone any favours
ME : SA isn't the only country to do genome sequencing- Britain does more than anyone in Europe....So far we have 20 cases identified of the omicron variant. ALL traced to an individual who recently rtnd from Southern Africa.
Wossname : . all that proves is where it came from.. but it's already spread
Me: Not a believer in the Whitehall doctine of 'We are where we are' myself.

--

I understand that there is a reasonable debate to be had about ' closing stable doors' etc - but personally I would rather we were doing SOMETHING rather than just throwing our scrupulously sanitised hands in the air and saying

' It's pointless - we're all doomed I tell ye,doomed '
 
The US government ruled offering tickets to other destinations in lieu of refunds was legitimate as large scale refunds would cause detrimental effects to the airlines. In other words the government didn’t want to have to do large bailouts.
tickets with only 12 months validity? This must have screwed hundreds of thousands of Americans
 
Well.....l had tickets on Delta, purchased in January 2020 through Delta for a convention that was supposed to take place in May 2020. The convention was canceled and Delta would not refund, best they would do is offer a travel voucher for another flight to anywhere in the continental US good for one year. Problem is you couldn't enter the US from Canada unless it was for business until just recently and l had no business excuse to justify travel. Purchasing tickets directly from the airline is a guarantee of absolutely nothing.

I know, we had similar, but direct with the airline will give you more than through a third party if there is anything to come such as a voucher.

Basically unless the airline does the cancelling, or flight bumping the most you will get is a flight credit. I have two sat with American Airlines at the moment after an event in California was covid cancelled, and California more or less shut down......I think I have till next March to use them.
 
The US government ruled offering tickets to other destinations in lieu of refunds was legitimate as large scale refunds would cause detrimental effects to the airlines. In other words the government didn’t want to have to do large bailouts.
tickets with only 12 months validity? This must have screwed hundreds of thousands of Americans
Not a 100% clear on tickets purchased by Americans within the US, my case deals with Canadian residents flying from Canada to the US.
 

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