A leading travel agent has given some useful advice for Irish tourists planning a vacation in 2022 – as international travel returns for the first time in a few years.
Already there has been a ‘massive increase’ in bookings – with the public desperate to fly out after Ireland finally lifted restrictions last week.
John Spollen is a director at Cassidy Travel, and he said the last two years have taught people one thing.
He explained: “It’s the importance of seizing life’s opportunities and savoring every moment of it when we can. Of course everyone wants to travel, but we all want to do it safely.
“The rebound is on. Inquiries and overseas holiday bookings resumed as soon as Ireland’s testing restrictions were eased. So many people will say “yes” to travel this year, bookings for overseas travel are on the rise. We are living in a pre-pandemic month of January!
“While this is great news for the industry,” he adds, “pent-up demand will have a knock-on effect on flight and accommodation availability and prices for the foreseeable future.”
And with that in mind, here are the best tips he has for anyone looking to get away from it all.
If you’ve opted for fixed travel dates, it may be best to book as early as possible.
Officials predict a decline of around 10-15% in available seats in Europe this year due to demand after two years of no travel due to Covid.
So if you’re planning a summer vacation, take a look now for any decent value.
Be flexible with your dates
If you’re not locked into any dates, it might be worth moving your vacation forward or postponing it.
July and August are the busiest times for travel for obvious reasons – but a break in May, June or September offers better value with similar temperatures and conditions.
Plus, being able to travel mid-week will give you much better prices and availability.
Check the Covid restrictions in your country
While restrictions have been lifted in Ireland, things are still a bit tricky on the continent.
Most countries still require proof of vaccination/booster or negative PCR/antigen test results to enter, including Italy and Cyprus.
Although you can enter, countries still have restrictions in place.
Be sure to check your destination’s guidelines.
Make sure you are covered
Cassidy Travel explains, “Travel insurance is essential! Remember to purchase insurance at the same time as you book to ensure you are covered.”
Check the expiration date of your passport
With international travel on hold, many Irish passports will have been put in a drawer and gathered dust over the past couple of years.
Chances are yours has expired in the meantime.
It’s not something you want to know in the departures hall, so if you need to apply for or renew your passport, file your application at the passport office as soon as possible.