TRAVEL NEWS UPDATE FEBRUARY 2022

Whatever else February will bring, for the most part it will mean grey British skies.  Sunshine is what is needed and sandy beaches.  Here follows a report on Jamaica from our sister publication Business Travel News.

Entry rule changes

The rules for entry to the UK change from Friday 11 February, but travellers do need to be in the know for the country they wish to visit.  The rules vary!

The date was chosen to be in time for the school half-term holidays. The old rules apply until then, meaning all fully vaccinated travellers and under 18s arriving in England will no longer need to take a pre-departure test or self-isolate on arrival, and will need to take a lateral flow test on Day 2 of arrival, rather than a more expensive PCR test.

If you test positive for Covid-19, you must self-isolate and take a free NHS PCR test to confirm the result.

www.gov.uk/guidance

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Airline passenger rights

The Government has announced plans to strengthen airline passenger rights.

This comes amid calls for change from leading airlines and consumer groups and, it is claimed, made possible thanks to the UK’s departure from the EU.

These include considering the creation of a fairer compensation model for when domestic UK flights are delayed.

Based on the current compensation model used by rail and ferry customers, this will see a significant shift away from the current model. Passengers will be able to claim compensation based on the length of the flight delay and linked to cost of travel, rather than having to meet a certain threshold – which is currently a three-hour delay.

The Government is also considering mandating all airlines to be part of the aviation ‘Alternative Dispute Resolution’ (ADR) scheme, which would give consumers a route for escalating certain complaints that cannot be settled between the consumer and airline, without needing to go to court. 

www.caa.co.uk

London to Oz

If you are planning to fly to Perth (Western Australia) in the near future, even non-stop from Heathrow, forget it.  The borders to the State are closed, even for Australians.

However if it is other parts of the Continent you are planning to visit Qantas has a daily Boeing Dreamliner flight via Darwin, Northern Territory, from where you can quickly transfer to the internal services.  It’s quicker too but unlikely to remain once Perth reopens. The routing is not attractive from a commercial point of view, the Northern Australian capital having a population of around 40,000 as against the Perth figure of just over two million.

https://covid19.homeaffairs.gov.au

Manchester T2 Aspire Open

The brand new Aspire lounge in Manchester International Airport T2 has opened. Follow the signs.  It is located close to B Gates and Gates 201-211. 

In the UK the following lounges are welcoming members and friends.  Do go to the website for actual operational hours.  Belfast City (BHD), Birmingham (BHX), Bristol (BRS), Edinburgh (EDI), Heathrow T5 (LHR), Luton (LTN), Manchester T1 (MAN) and Newcastle (NCL).

www.executivelounges.com

The Elizabeth Line

The new London “Crossrail” is nearly with us but don’t get too excited.  Going west it will initially stop at Paddington meaning a change to the Heathrow Express is required.  It’s a good walk. Gatwick can be accessed at Farringdon. Info here.

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