When will trips be possible again? Can I go on vacation in summer 2021? Should I really book already? Many people ask themselves these questions – the corona pandemic has made us tired, it’s been a long time since our last vacation, and we all dream of finally being able to visit other countries again soon. But is that even safe? And where can you actually go?
Even if we can hardly wait to lie under palm trees on a sandy beach, we shouldn’t rush anything and stay careful. Nevertheless, we can hope, and think about where we could go next: to Greece to the beach, to Egypt for diving, or on a pub tour in Ireland? What will be possible, where and how – this will just come clear at short notice, so we recommend only to book with flexible cancellation possibilities.
Aside from legal regulations and restrictions, we ourselves also have a responsibility that we should take seriously: not all countries that allow foreigners to enter are taking the best security precautions against COVID-19. Inform yourself well, e. g. via the Foreign Affairs website of your country of residence about the situation on location, and think about whether it is really worth the risk!
New Ideas for Vacations
Tourism has been lying idle for a long time, and countries that live mainly from tourism are having an especially hard time with the long-running pandemic and travel restrictions. It’s no wonder that some countries are having creative ideas on how welcoming visitors could work in the future – quarantine on a private yacht in Thailand? Vaccination vacation in the Maldives? Hotel vouchers in Malta? Home office with a sea view? Vacation in Dubai? Some ideas seem very unusual or are only an option for the (very) wealthy.
PCR Tests, Quarantine, and Vaccination Certificates
Any one of the few business travelers at the moment are familiar the preparations and the hurdles that have to be overcome in order to travel to another country. We will probably not be able to get around PCR tests in the future either – after all, they are an important tool for discovering infections. Vaccination rates are increasing worldwide and give cause for hope. What kind of evidence has to be provided where, for how long vaccinations or previous infections will release you from the obligation to test, and where quarantine is still required will probably change constantly, making predictions about the future of travel outdated within days. But we don’t have to bury our heads in the sand and stay at home: research continues and the possibilities for activities and travel will gradually increase.
Far Away Destinations?
Perhaps you have already heard of the many influencers who recently flew to Dubai due to the relaxation of the measures, and that some of them even immigrated there? That doesn’t sound so bad, why not take a vacation in Dubai? Aside from the necessary cash, the United Emirates are known for its rigorous laws and non-compliance with human rights. It can of course be interesting though (or even because of it) to get to know the country with all its peculiarities.
Or how about the Maldives? The island nation in the Indian Ocean is a popular honeymoon destination with its white sandy beaches and palm trees. A large part of the population is already vaccinated, especially in the tourism sector. Under the motto “Visit, vaccinate, and vacation”, they plan to offer vaccinations for tourists soon; entry with a negative PCR test is currently possible. In a country where income from tourism normally contributes around 67% to the gross domestic product, it is no wonder that they try everything to bring foreign guests back into the country.
But long distance travel doesn’t have to be unaffordable or impossible! It’s important that you are well informed about the travel destination, the travel regulations, and the local arrangements. We also recommend to book only flights to avoid problems – even if the provisions of the holiday country do not change, the country in which you are making a stopover could prohibit transit or link it to other conditions at short notice. You should also not plan multi-country trips or backpacking holidays to stay safe. A relaxing stay in a nice resort is probably the better and more sensible choice here.
Holidays in Europe
Although nothing is certain, it seems likely that vacationing within Europe might be a little easier than traveling long distance. On the one hand, the entry regulations are not necessarily looser between neighboring countries than between more distant nations, but on the other hand, the distances and thus the travel costs are much lower, and vacations can be planned or canceled more easily at short notice.
Greece is an evergreen and always worth a trip; many of us have already vacationed in Greece as children and can smell the souvlaki at the mention of the name, feel the sand under our feet and remember the many cats that brush past your legs at your tavern table. Even if the numbers are still relatively high at the moment, the government is already planning to further relax entry requirements in mid-May. Direct entry by air is currently possible with a valid PCR test without having to go into quarantine. Italy is also currently allowing some kind of vacation.
Or how about more northern travel destinations, selected according to low Corona numbers, such as Denmark? This could be a bit difficult, as the entry requirements are very strict, but gradual openings are planned in the lead up to summer. The numbers are also low in Iceland, but a five-day quarantine is necessary after entry, and the situation is similar in Sweden.
Vacation in your Country of Residence
We barely dare to mention it, and we understand if you can’t hear it anymore – but what about vacationing at home? This doesn’t necessarily mean staying within your own four walls or on the balcony, but getting to know the surrounding area or your own country better. Even if there could be some regional restrictions, this kind of vacation is still quite easy: we understand the national language, have better and more detailed access to information, and the journey is probably quite short! In addition, we do not have to cancel an expensive flight in case of doubt. Most Germans would like to spend their Whitsun holiday in Germany in 2021, according to a survey by HomeToGo.
All in all, forecasts are difficult, and at the current status (end of April 2021) there is an outlook that gives hope for a pleasant summer with a few possible holiday destinations. It’s hard to predict something these days – but we’re used to that by now. Be patient a little longer and hold on, your next travel will come eventually!