The world's more beautiful on foot...

close

Call us on 01707 331133

  • Mon to Fri09:00 - 17:00
  • SaturdayClosed
  • SundayClosed
close

Call us on 01707 331133

  • Mon to Fri09:00 - 17:00
  • SaturdayClosed
  • SundayClosed

Our Holidays

SafetyFirst

The safety and wellbeing of our clients, tour leaders and suppliers remain our priority and our return to operations will be done in a safe and responsible way.

Safe Travels in 2021 and beyond…

Firstly, you can book and travel with us in complete confidence, we’ve always had flexible booking conditions and we’re fully committed to continuing to offer you all the flexibility you need and to keep you updated with all the latest developments as we return to travel and group holidays. 

Some ‘frequently asked questions’ are detailed below and in addition a step by step guide to travel abroad is available here and a summary of the UK Government’s Passenger Covid-19 Charter here

Please also take the time to review the information specific to your chosen destination on the  FCDO travel advice website as there may be additional local rules and restrictions in place which are important for your arrival and stay. In all cases, holiday travel will only be possible so long as the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) advice allows for non-essential travel. 

Please note that these details shown below refers to England only, for the other devolved nations, please refer to the appropriate government websites for Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland.

Will I need to have Covid-19 vaccination documentation ?

Yes, most likely. If you live in England and have taken a full vaccination course (2 doses) you will be able to demonstrate your Covid-19 vaccination status, either using the NHS App or by applying for a written document from the NHS website or by calling 119. We recommend that you check if the destination country accepts this proof of vaccinated status. 

Please note: The Foreign Office (FCDO) has recently updated its travel advice for a host of European destinations advising that travellers intending to show their vaccination status with a paper form must ensure it is dated from November 1. The updated FCDO advice says: “If you are travelling with a printed PDF proof of vaccination status, it must date from November 1 to ensure that the certificate can be scanned successfully. Your NHS appointment card from vaccination centres is not designed to be used as proof of vaccination and should not be used to demonstrate your vaccine status.”

This update applies to PDF printouts of the NHS Covid Pass but does not affect the digital version

Some destinations may alternatively accept proof of a negative Covid-19 test but you should check your destination country individual requirements by visiting the FCDO travel advice website.

If you live in Scotland, Wales, or Northern Ireland, you should check your governments websites for further information.


Will I need to have a PCR test before travel ?

PCR tests are not a UK requirement but of the destination country itself and the requirements can change at any time. We recommend that that you visit the FCDO travel advice for the latest information.

If you need to show a negative PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction) test result, you will need to use a private provider as the NHS Test and Trace will not be able to provide these documents.  If you prefer to take this Outbound PCR test at home, you can purchase self-tests. 

Please be sure to check your chosen provider meets the needs for your holiday destination and is a UKAS accredited lab (i.e., accredited by the government's regulatory agency) and approved for use by Public Health England.   In all cases keep in mind that your destination country may alter their entry requirements at short notice and without warning so we would strongly advise you to check the entry requirements before purchasing any tests.

Before taking the test, you should ensure to verify the travel window specified by your destination country. You will need to take the travel certificate and the necessary QR Code with you to the airport so if you have not printed these documents and intend to use your mobile or tablet, please ensure they are fully charged. Please also keep in mind if you are intending to use your mobile or tablet, you will be dependent on the airport's internet connection.

We strongly recommend that you have taken out insurance which covers you in case you or one of your party members tests positive for Covid-19 prior to departure or whilst in resort.

What about returning to the UK?

For passengers returning to the UK, the Government have a two-tier status. It is not our intention to operate to any country on the government red list. You are currently unable to travel to these countries from the United Kingdom. Anyone returning from these countries that are a British or Irish resident, will need to stay in hotel quarantine on arrival into the UK at their own expense for 10 days. Pre-departure and arrival Covid-19 testing requirements also apply. Here’s a current directory of the red list countries.

From 4.00am on Tuesday 30 November, when returning to England from non-red list countries, if you have been fully vaccinated for at least 14 days under an approved vaccination programme, you must:

  • book and pay for a PCR Covid-19 test – to be taken before the end of day 2 after arrival in England. The day you arrive is day 0.
  • self-isolate at home until your PCR test is confirmed as negative.
  • complete your passenger locator form – any time in the 48 hours before you arrive in England.  When completing your Passenger Locator Form it will be necessary to provide the booking reference for your pre-booked PCR test. UK Passenger Locator forms can be filled out on-line here. 

You must be able to prove that you have been fully vaccinated (plus 14 days) with a document (digital or paper-based) from a national or state-level public health body that includes, as a minimum:

  • forename and surname(s)
  • date of birth
  • vaccine brand and manufacturer
  • date of vaccination for every dose
  • country or territory of vaccination and/or certificate issuer

From 4.00am on Tuesday 07 December, when returning to England from non-red list countries, you must also take a PCR or LFD COVID-19 test before travel to England.

  • You must take the test within the 2 days before you travel to England.
  • This will apply whether you qualify as fully vaccinated or not.
  • If your test result is positive, you must not travel. You must follow local rules and guidance for positive coronavirus cases.
  • If your test result is inconclusive, you must take another test.
  • NHS tests cannot be used for the purpose of pre-departure testing before travel to England

Type of test

The test must meet performance standards of ≥97% specificity, ≥80% sensitivity at viral loads above 100,000 copies/ml.

This could include tests such as:

  • a nucleic acid test, including a PCR test
  • a LAMP test
  • an antigen test, such as an LFD (lateral flow device) test

You must check with your test provider that the test meets the standards. You may not be able to travel if it does not.

If you have recently had Covid

If you have recently recovered from COVID but are no longer infectious, you should use a lateral flow device (LFD) test. LFD tests have a lower sensitivity than PCR or LAMP tests, so they are less likely to return a positive result from a historic infection. The LFD test must meet the minimum performance standards as set out above.

How to provide proof of a negative test result

You must provide the original test result notification. Your test result must be in either English, French or Spanish. Translations will not be accepted.

Your test result can be provided as:

  • a printed document
  • an email or text message you can show on your phone - make sure your device is charged

It must include the following information:

  • your name, which should match the name on your travel documents
  • your date of birth or age
  • the result of the test
  • the date the test sample was collected or received by the test provider
  • the name of the test provider and their contact details
  • confirmation of the device used for the test, or that the test was a PCR test

If you do not have proof of a negative test result

If you do not present proof you tested negative, you may not be able to board your transport to England.

If you arrive in England without proof you tested negative, you could be fined £500.


We will endeavour to keep this information up-to-date but would emphasise that you should also check with official sources before booking and again regularly prior to travel as the requirements continue to evolve. 

The Information shown in the table below for test providers is accurate to the best of our knowledge and is provided as guidance only.  Randox, C-19 and Qured all offer appropriate Covid-19 testing, but please ensure these meet the needs of your holiday, destination country and your pre departure schedule before any purchase is made.

In summary, the broad testing requirements are as follows:

  

When 

Cost 

Tips 

Link 

Vaccination history 

For entry into destination and to return to the UK

Free – NHS App 

Download the free NHS App or visit the NHS website. You can also call 119 to request a printed document. If you are using a printed document, please ensure this has been printed after 01 November as detailed above.

 NHS website

Pre-departure test 

72 - 48 hours before departure from the UK 


Randox (From £48)
Use code AITO43 

If you do need a negative Covid-19 test to enter your destination, you must use a private test provider in the UK. NHS tests cannot be used for the purpose of pre-travel testing.

Purchase at least a week before travel, with kit delivered to your home. Test at home, drop off at one of 000s of sites around the UK, test results within 24 hours.

Randox 

Fit to fly to UK 

48 hours before departure to the UK 

Qured (£39)
C19 testing (£29)
Use code AITO10 

Purchase at least a week before travel, with kit delivered to your home. NHS tests cannot be used for the purpose of testing.

Qured arrange a video call to take a lateral flow test whilst on holiday. Our leaders or hotels will have a device available to make this call if you do not have a smartphone.

C19 provide a self-testing kit. Once carried out and uploaded to C-19, the results are sent to you with a certificate within a 12-hour window (via email).

Schedule your call/test (before you travel) for early evening 3 days before your return flight.  

Qured


C19 Testing 

2 Day test back in the UK 

48 hours after arrival back in the UK 

Randox (From £48)
Use code AITO43 

Purchase at least a week before travel, with kit delivered to your home. Test at home, drop off at one of 000s of sites around the UK, test results within 24 hours. 

Randox 

Passenger locator forms 

Entry to UK 

Free 

Follow links below to government websites. 

Passenger Locator Form

What if the destination country changes its traffic light status whilst I am on holiday?

The rules that are in force when you return to the UK will apply, not the rules when you departed the UK, so if the rules change whilst you are overseas, you will need to comply with the current status on your return.

Are some non EMA approved vaccinations still not acceptable for travel overseas?

The topic of Covishield, the AstraZeneca vaccine manufactured in India, has been widely discussed in the media recently, and there were early reports that some countries would not accept this vaccine as valid, though they accept the AstraZeneca vaccine manufactured in Europe. 

Individual countries are free to apply their own rules for travellers and WHO have urged all countries to recognize the vaccines it has authorised (including Covishield).    It is highly recommended that everyone checks the validity of their vaccine before deciding to travel to another country. This can be done by using the vaccine-checker tool created by VisaGuide.World, which enables travellers worldwide to confirm whether the jab they have been immunized with is accepted by the authorities of the country they plan on visiting. You should also confirm these details by visiting the FCDO travel advice website  and reviewing your chosen destination.

What sort of restrictions could there be overseas? 

We returned to overseas travel during September 2021 and we are constantly reviewing our itineraries and making any necessary tweaks in order to comply with any local requirements as well as ensuring we can deliver the best possible holiday experience. 

If any major changes become necessary, then of course we’ll do our best to inform you before departure and our experienced tour leaders will make judgement calls during your holiday to modify the itinerary if appropriate.  

Before we resume trips in any destination, we review all accommodation, transport, and other aspects of your holiday against our Covid-19 Safety Guidelines and we’ll continue to update our policies and protocols as appropriate, ensuring that all our suppliers are kept updated.  

As a general policy we would always recommend when travelling that you carry your own supply of reusable face masks and alcohol-based hand sanitiser (you’ll need them for air travel), and our tour leaders will be able to advise you regarding the usage of these based on local guidelines.

Our aim is to provide you with an enjoyable holiday with as few restrictions as reasonably possible. We know that as we head out of the pandemic, getting back out there and exploring on foot has never been more important and we are working towards making this happen as soon as we can!

What would happen if I became unwell whilst on holiday?

All our holidays are accompanied by trained and experienced tour leaders who have ‘around the clock’ support from our head office so there will always be someone to assist you in the event of any illness within the group.  Our local suppliers and agents would also work with our tour leader to ensure that the best medical facilities and practical assistance was available. 

If you were showing symptoms of Covid-19 whilst on one of our holidays, or return a positive test result, we would ask you NOT to join our walking programme or to share transport/meals with other members of the group and it would be necessary for you to immediately follow the local rules for self-isolation.   With a positive test result, you are legally required to self-isolate, irrespective of your vaccination status. If you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive, we would ask that you also take a Covid-19 PCR test even if you are symptom free.  

Any extended period of self-isolation would be at your expense although our head office operational team have a huge wealth of experience in supporting our tour leaders and customers overseas together with a team of external experts who can be called upon for additional guidance, support, and advice. Your travel insurance may cover these costs so please check your individual policy.

What does the future of travel and overseas holidays look like?

It is no secret that the tour industry has been a major casualty of this pandemic, with overseas travel severely curtailed, and it is likely that the industry as a whole, will take time to recover fully. However, whilst we have all had time at home, so many have discovered the joy and benefit of walking and being outdoors. Exploring on foot really is the best medicine and we are as committed as ever to not only providing great walking holidays but supporting local communities overseas who benefit from our ‘small group’ tourism. 

Although our post pandemic portfolio may be smaller than before, we fervently believe that sustainable tourism will be more important than ever, we know what a huge privilege it is to be able to travel freely and by leading small groups, supporting local and global charitable causes and approaching all that we do ethically, we're able to minimise any adverse effects of our activities. We strive to work with local guides, transport, porters and food in order to benefit the local economy without exploitation.  See here for more of our initiatives. 

That’s great! Where can we go?

We have a great selection of holidays planned, we are committed to providing carefully researched destinations, particularly in Europe where shorter flights, good hotels and hygiene standards are available and healthcare is similar to what you may expect at home. Add in some wide-open spaces, panoramic views, sunshine, local food and the company of your fellow travellers and you’re set to go.

And meanwhile, don’t forget about our UK selection exploring the countryside, hills, mountains, and coastal paths. There has been a huge demand for UK walking holidays, and we are adding new centres and departure dates all the time. 

More Information

Our protocols are guided by the WTTC (World Travel & Tourism Council), UNWTO (World Tourism Organisation), the European Commission and local government regulations and include personal protection, extensive disinfecting, and physical distancing measures. We have reviewed and enhanced our health and safety policies and procedures to consider the new challenges posed by coronavirus. We endeavour to ensure that all our suppliers and partners are implementing new minimum standards that emphasise increased hygiene and sanitation.

This page is a summary of the extensive steps we are taking. Should you wish to know more, you can download the safety guidelines we have provided to our team for a more detailed breakdown of the measures we have put in place.

In addition, more information can be found here:

LAST UPDATE Monday 06 December 2021

Safe Travels

Safe Travels

We have reviewed and enhanced our health and safety policies and procedures to take into account the new challenges posed by coronavirus. We endeavour to ensure that all our suppliers and partners are implementing new minimum standards that emphasise increased hygiene and sanitation.

Ramblers Walking Holidays has received the World Travel and Tourism Council’s Safe Travels stamp, which provides travellers with assurance that we have adopted health and hygiene global standardised protocols – so you can experience ‘Safe Travels’.


Good to Go

We're Good to Go

We're Good to Go! In partnership with the National Tourist Organisations of Great Britain and Northern Ireland this certification recognises that we have confirmed that we have followed government and industry COVID-19 guidelines, ensuring processes are in place to maintain cleanliness and aid social/physical distancing.


Close
Close