Picture the scene. You’re enjoying the trip of a lifetime. You’ve already spent time in Singapore and have now turned your attention to New Zealand. Today’s itinerary includes a spot of whale watching, after you’ve already enjoyed the sights of the TranzAlpine pass and Waimakariri River. Before long, you know it’ll be onwards to the fabled North Island, which will include seeing the Oamaru Blue Penguin Colony and walking Bilbo’s footsteps into Hobbiton.
And then SARS-CoV-2 arrives.
The world closes. You’re stuck in a foreign country, 18,695km from home. Borders are shutting, flights are grounded, and the virus is running rampant.
Unfortunately, this was exactly the situation that my clients found themselves in during the Spring of 2020. They had approached me because this is the kind of heavily researched, multi-centre trip that Travel Counsellors specialise in. Yet they were about to discover the true value of having a Travel Counsellor in your corner: the unrivalled, award-winning support of a true travel professional.
Here for you in a crisis
And so, I did what I always do for my clients – I rolled up my sleeves and got to work. Of course, in a situation as quickly evolving as Covid-19, this required every ounce of experience gained over the years as I liaised with the British Embassy, the airlines, and the local authorities on the other side of the globe. Ultimately, discussions with the Home Office resulted in spots on one of a handful of return flights for British citizens.
Of course, in an ideal world, everything goes off without a snag. I adore the stories of bucket list trips achieved and hearing all about the moments that matter. Yet travel can sometimes be unpredictable, and those are the exactly the situations where I show my worth. I take as much stress out of the situation as possible and fight your battles for you, all with the security of complete, unparalleled financial protection to rely on.
It’s now over a year since those events, and the pandemic pushes on. We have the glimmer of hope that is a return to the wider world and the opening of travel corridors. However, the situation remains dynamic and ever changing. On top of the UK’s traffic light system, there are requirements on approved pre-departure and pre-return testing and developing FCO advice. And there are further specific conditions at the point of entry, which naturally vary from country to country.
My clients don’t have to worry about any of that. They can focus on enjoying their trip, creating memories, and experiencing the sights, sounds and smells that this incredible world has to offer, knowing that just a phone call away, their dedicated Travel Counsellor sits ready to spring into action on their behalf. In their corner.
WORDS Jade Hawkins Travel Counsellor