The wait is FINALLY over - summer holidays are back!
2022-06-16

For most of us, it’s been a while since we’ve been standing nervously at the check-in desk because our suitcase is near the weight limit, or since we’ve stepped off the plane and felt that warm air hit our face. Well, the good news is that this summer it seems we can finally get back to our adventures abroad!

I know many people are still unsure about going away again or maybe think it’s too much hassle, but I’m here to tell you that it really is quite easy and safe as long as you do the right prep work. First, here’s a quick checklist of general things to remember, just in case you’ve forgotten:

  1. Passport – brush off those cobwebs and make sure your passport is still valid!
  2. Plug adapter – make sure you check what sockets are used at your destination as these can vary by country
  3. Money – we’re all used to tapping our cards now, but you will get LOTS of charges if you do this abroad! Either get some money converted to the cash currency of the country or why not look at getting a money travel card
  4. Travel Insurance – do not underestimate the importance of this one!! Make sure you are insured in case anything does go wrong – click here for some advice on this one!
  5. Liquids – remember any liquids in your hand luggage must all fit into one clear plastic bag AND each be under 100ml – this includes make-up products!

Whilst all of this is part of the return to normality, we must remember that COVID-19 does still exist and is still a problem in other countries. It’s so important you check whether you will need proof of a negative COVID test, quarantine on arrival, or wear face coverings – perhaps even a certain type of face covering too. The easiest way to find out this information is to the A-Z Country Travel Guide as this lets you see the entry requirements and COVID rules for each country – cool right?! You can even sign up for email alerts so if any advice changes you will know straight away.

Each country’s requirements really do vary, and you could be fined and/or refused entry if you aren’t prepared! I travelled to Germany at the beginning of April and I too was worried about the entry requirements. Do I need proof of a negative COVID test? How do I prove I’m vaccinated? I know they use different face masks in Germany, but how do I get them? What if rules change when I’m away? All valid concerns with very simple answers!

  • I used my NHS Scotland COVID status app to show my QR code proving I am fulling vaccinated this (there are separate apps for England, Wales, and Northern Ireland). All my worrying was honestly for nothing as all that happened was at the border when my passport was checked, I was also asked for my COVID documentation, my QR code was scanned, and I was allowed through.
  • Germany requires FFP2 masks in certain public areas – you can buy packs of FFP2 masks online for less than £10!
  • I signed up for email alerts for German travel advice in case any rules changed whilst I was away. I’d really recommend doing this as you won’t get caught out and you are free to enjoy your well-deserved time away! You can sign up on the country information page on the A-Z Country Travel Guide.

We all want to go have great fun abroad again this summer – and I’m sure we all will – so why not just take a couple of minutes to do that little amount of prep work to keep you safe and ready to enjoy your holiday to the fullest! Follow me on Instagram @emma_cathro for more travel tips this summer!

Published by Students, University of Aberdeen

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