FAQ's for Guided Holidays
How do I know if my holiday is going ahead?
- Headwater will be reviewing all upcoming departures on a rolling, week by week basis, to assess whether we can safely travel to the destination country. We would look to make final decisions around 4-6 weeks before departure if a trip is not going ahead. We would of course contact you if this is the case.
- Where we anticipate the trip can run, we will ask you to pay your final balance and then continue to monitor all destinations and will notify customers immediately should the status of their departure change.
What can I expect when I fly?
- Our airline partners have been making changes to the way they operate in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19. After arriving at the airport, you’ll notice that your experience will be a little different to what you’re used to. Social distancing rules are as they are in other public spaces, so must be followed as much as possible, and in order to help protect yourself and others on your journey you will need to wear a face covering in the airport and throughout your flight. There will also be more readily available hand sanitiser throughout the airport and the option to check in online and utilise a self-service bag drop. Onboard, aircrafts are typically fitted with HEPA filters which replace cabin air every three to four minutes and cabins are thoroughly disinfected daily, providing surface protection from viruses that lasts for at least 24 hours.
- Measures differ by airline and destination country, so please check with your airline for the most up to date flying advice.
- If you are travelling by other means, such as Eurostar, Eurotunnel or ferry, please check with your travel provider for their most up to date advice.
What do I need to do before I go?
- Whilst we are only travelling to countries which meet strict safety measures, some countries still have specific entry requirements, such as completion of a health declaration for example.
- Please review your destination country’s requirements prior to travel and ensure that you can comply accordingly. The requirements can be found on the FCO website.
Will our itinerary on the trip be affected and when will I know this?
- Prior to your trip, our UK HQ will work with the local team to re-route or amend itineraries where necessary and possible, to avoid high risk or high-density locations and comply with local guidance. If we have to significantly alter any of the main characteristics of the travel services that make up your package, we will contact you to discuss options.
How will social distancing work on the trip, both within the group but also visiting busy places?
- Because of the measures we have put in place to keep the group healthy and safe, we don’t believe it is necessary, or wholly practical, to practice social distancing within the group itself. As such, customers may be sitting beside each other on buses, meals will be shared together at communal tables and you will travel around in relatively close proximity, as normal. Your guide will plan to minimise time in crowded places by re-routing or arriving at quiet times, where practical but you should understand that it may not always be possible to avoid crowds or busy places.
What personal hygiene measures do I need to take?
- You should bring your own face-covering and hand-sanitiser supplies for the duration of your trip. Your leader will carry some spare items for use in emergency but should not be relied upon. You will be asked to follow face-covering and handwashing guidelines, plus any local government requirements, which will be reconfirmed by your leader on arrival.
What can I expect at the hotel(s)?
- Hotels will be following local guidelines and adhere to strict cleaning and food preparation protocols.
- You may find that some hotels will insist on temperature checks for guests on arrival. You may also be required to send a full passport image scan to the hotel prior to arrival or at least passport details to speed up check in and avoid touching IDs (we will let you know if this is necessary before you go).
- It’s likely that lifts will be restricted to use only by used customers staying in the same room at any one time.
- Some hotel amenities and services may not be available at all however others, such as pools, spa etc. may require you to pre-book appointments or time slots in order to be socially distant from others staying at the hotel. For spa treatments you may be required to wear protective equipment. Please ask at your hotel on arrival.
What happens if someone on the trip (including myself) develops symptoms of Covid-19?
- We have worked with our local partners to plan and prepare for this scenario and will always follow the requirements of the local health authorities in the destination.
What happens if I develop CV19 symptoms just before I’m due to depart on my trip, am I entitled to a full refund?
- If you have either a confirmed diagnosis of Covid-19 within 21 days prior to departure or an order, via a local health authority track & trace team, to self-isolate due to contact with a person who has, or may have, Covid-19, we will cancel your booking and provide a full refund. Please note that evidence must be provided in order to receive the refund.
What should I do before I return to the UK?
I no longer want to travel; can I change my booking?
- You can change your booking up to 42 days before travel (if booked on or before 29 Jun 2020 – it’s up to 31 days if booked from 1st July 2020), just let us know what trip you would like to change to and we will move your funds across. You can also cancel your booking and have your funds held with Headwater for up to two years, to rebook in the future. Please note that this may exclude flights, and any non-refundable in-destination costs. You can see the details of our Covid Refund Commitment here.