International travel

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shpalman
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International travel

Post by shpalman » Tue Jun 16, 2020 5:29 pm

Maybe I want a new thread to discuss the specific issues to do with international travel.

reopen.europa.eu is going to be useful over the next few months.

I've no idea what things will be like in August but I'll be travelling between the hottest zone in a country which otherwise has things under control right now and an almost unaffected zone in a country which is basically a bin fire. So who knows.
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Re: International travel

Post by shpalman » Wed Jun 17, 2020 7:37 am

New Zealand are taking the case of the imported British cases extremely seriously:

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/ ... ine-fiasco
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Re: International travel

Post by MartinDurkin » Wed Jun 17, 2020 9:23 am

I see some "journalists" and Tory MPs are still calling for airbridges for Brits to travel abroad without quarantine.

Apart from Brazil and US who else would want to allow us in?

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Re: International travel

Post by lpm » Wed Jun 17, 2020 9:35 am

Russia. Iran.
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Re: International travel

Post by basementer » Wed Jun 17, 2020 10:45 am

shpalman wrote:
Wed Jun 17, 2020 7:37 am
New Zealand are taking the case of the imported British cases extremely seriously:

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/ ... ine-fiasco
Yes. Dr Bloomfield (Director-General of Health) had an enviable public reputation right up until a couple of days ago, but it's taken a hell of a knock. I think our PM and her Cabinet have correctly judged that an inquiry within government or the Ministry of Health would look like arse-covering, so they've called in outsiders - the Ombudsman and senior military - instead.
I'll think of something.

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Re: International travel

Post by shpalman » Wed Jun 17, 2020 11:08 am

shpalman wrote:
Wed Jun 17, 2020 7:37 am
New Zealand are taking the case of the imported British cases extremely seriously:

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/ ... ine-fiasco
Seems the story has been updated since this morning, or I missed where it said
.. the health ministry said “additional information” had revealed the women got lost driving out of Auckland and met briefly with the friends who had loaned them their car, to get directions. The women and their friends had “limited physical contact” for about five minutes.
I'd assume they'd met with those friends somehow already, in order to pick up the loaned car. But anyway,
320 people who are regarded as “close contacts” of the women are being traced, and they will be urged to get tested. Close contacts could include passengers on their flight to New Zealand and other quarantined travellers at their Auckland hotel, as well as hotel staff and flight crew. The women were in isolation with a relative, officials said...

... Some staying in managed isolation at the same hotel as the women have told reporters they were not tested during their stay – or even upon leaving. It was also not known whether others were granted compassionate exemptions to quarantine without being tested.
Slip up with two people and hundreds need to be traced and tested.
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Re: International travel

Post by shpalman » Fri Jul 03, 2020 10:59 am

England's quarantine scrapped for arrivals from 50 'low risk' countries but we don't know what they officially are yet.

Good to know that the Vatican is included though.
Mr Shapps said he had "held off" from his announcement in the hope that Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland would reach a decision at the same time as England. but the other countries in the UK have dealt with covid far better than England has and frankly have no respect whatsoever for our government anymore and would actually stop English people entering if they could.
Also good to know that apart from reciprocal arrangements from other countries which have been as bad as England still is, it has occurred to Shapps to let in people from countries which are doing much better on the understanding that they won't be allowed to go back.
Greece would not be on the amber list to begin with, unless of course it's the prime minister's dad, because f.ck you, that's why.
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Re: International travel

Post by Bird on a Fire » Fri Jul 03, 2020 11:24 am

I don't understand why it has to be 14 days or nothing.

Most infected people will test positive after a week, so why not use the UK's whizzy testing capacity to release asymptomatic, negative-testing people from quarantine at that point?
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Re: International travel

Post by Gfamily » Fri Jul 03, 2020 11:48 am

Bird on a Fire wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 11:24 am
I don't understand why it has to be 14 days or nothing.

Most infected people will test positive after a week, so why not use the UK's whizzy testing capacity to release asymptomatic, negative-testing people from quarantine at that point?
Well, with up to 30% false negatives, that 'most' is true, but not as complete as one would hope for.
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Re: International travel

Post by Bird on a Fire » Fri Jul 03, 2020 12:09 pm

Gfamily wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 11:48 am
Bird on a Fire wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 11:24 am
I don't understand why it has to be 14 days or nothing.

Most infected people will test positive after a week, so why not use the UK's whizzy testing capacity to release asymptomatic, negative-testing people from quarantine at that point?
Well, with up to 30% false negatives, that 'most' is true, but not as complete as one would hope for.
That's true. On the other hand, most visitors coming from almost anywhere in Europe are in fact at greater risk after entering the UK, where per-capita cases are higher. This is true even of countries on the UK's shitlist.

A week of quarantine is a lot easier to stomach than two (especially as the quarantining is entirely on a trust basis, with zero enforcement), especially as in ~99% of cases it's unnecessary. How many people are actually going to take two weeks off work to stay at home after visiting family abroad, for instance?

Containing 70% of infected people is certainly better than containing none of them, which is the new plan. At the moment, the only way UK arrivals can get a test is by lying about having symptoms, which seems a bit daft.
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Re: International travel

Post by Martin_B » Fri Jul 03, 2020 1:19 pm

Bird on a Fire wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 12:09 pm
A week of quarantine is a lot easier to stomach than two (especially as the quarantining is entirely on a trust basis, with zero enforcement), especially as in ~99% of cases it's unnecessary. How many people are actually going to take two weeks off work to stay at home after visiting family abroad, for instance?

Containing 70% of infected people is certainly better than containing none of them, which is the new plan. At the moment, the only way UK arrivals can get a test is by lying about having symptoms, which seems a bit daft.
Well, here in Australia I'd say it's been pretty universal to stay at home for 2 weeks after foreign travel (well, once the issues with cruise ships in Sydney was overcome!). When the lockdown started my company had half a dozen people overseas and all of them had to self-quarantine for 14 days. If you couldn't easily self-quarantine from your family, hotels were set up to allow you quarantine, with guards on each floor to enforce it.

One friend had his son fly home from the Barcelona academy (which was scary, seeing how Spain had been hit and he couldn't get a flight until ~4 weeks after Spain started locking down) and he then went into quarantine with his son for 14 days.
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Re: International travel

Post by Bird on a Fire » Fri Jul 03, 2020 1:26 pm

Martin_B wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 1:19 pm
Bird on a Fire wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 12:09 pm
A week of quarantine is a lot easier to stomach than two (especially as the quarantining is entirely on a trust basis, with zero enforcement), especially as in ~99% of cases it's unnecessary. How many people are actually going to take two weeks off work to stay at home after visiting family abroad, for instance?

Containing 70% of infected people is certainly better than containing none of them, which is the new plan. At the moment, the only way UK arrivals can get a test is by lying about having symptoms, which seems a bit daft.
Well, here in Australia I'd say it's been pretty universal to stay at home for 2 weeks after foreign travel (well, once the issues with cruise ships in Sydney was overcome!). When the lockdown started my company had half a dozen people overseas and all of them had to self-quarantine for 14 days. If you couldn't easily self-quarantine from your family, hotels were set up to allow you quarantine, with guards on each floor to enforce it.
That's good to hear. Specialist quarantine centres sound like a very sensible idea.

For full disclosure, I'm trying to find somewhere to quarantine in the UK at the moment, as I'd like to visit my mum at some point this year. AFAICT my only options are
- pay for a hotel for a fortnight (ouch) and voluntarily stay put (which would suck, but is doable)
- 'quarantine' in my mum's spare room, use separate bathrooms and avoid being in the kitchen/other areas at the same time (this is permitted by the UK government but sounds rather difficult to achieve safely in practice).
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Re: International travel

Post by Martin_B » Fri Jul 03, 2020 1:34 pm

This September will be my parent's 50th wedding anniversary. I've been planning a trip back to the UK for the last year or so, and bought my tickets back in January, before I'd even heard of Wuhan. Since the pandemic I've always realised that the chances of flying back to the UK were between slim and none, but now my flights have been cancelled officially.

I've been offered a choice:
a) take a refund on my tickets, less a hefty cancellation fee (when I'm not the one cancelling the flights!)
b) take a credit note for the flight, but they seem to want me to nominate a date of travel now, even though I can't know when the UK will re-open for flights (preferably without 2 week quarantine), nor whether flights will be available on the nominated date, nor what the price will be, nor whether the dates will match up with family and friend availability in the UK.

I mean, I could take the credit note and then the airline jacks up the price (because they control the prices) and I end up having to pay twice for the same flight. I have no problem with them keeping my money (I'd prefer it back, but I know they are having a rough time) but considering they either won't give me all my money back, or want me to sign up for a credit note which appears to leave me completely at their mercy of terms and conditions (which they won't tell me), I'm more than a little peeved.
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Re: International travel

Post by headshot » Fri Jul 03, 2020 3:03 pm

Martin_B wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 1:34 pm
I've been offered a choice:
a) take a refund on my tickets, less a hefty cancellation fee (when I'm not the one cancelling the flights!)
b) take a credit note for the flight, but they seem to want me to nominate a date of travel now, even though I can't know when the UK will re-open for flights (preferably without 2 week quarantine), nor whether flights will be available on the nominated date, nor what the price will be, nor whether the dates will match up with family and friend availability in the UK.

I mean, I could take the credit note and then the airline jacks up the price (because they control the prices) and I end up having to pay twice for the same flight. I have no problem with them keeping my money (I'd prefer it back, but I know they are having a rough time) but considering they either won't give me all my money back, or want me to sign up for a credit note which appears to leave me completely at their mercy of terms and conditions (which they won't tell me), I'm more than a little peeved.
Would you be able to fly into a European hub, then get a flight to Blighty from there? I hear Sofia is good for connections.

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Re: International travel

Post by headshot » Fri Jul 03, 2020 3:17 pm

Oh, and: https://www.theguardian.com/politics/li ... 51fe2ac38a

Australia is no longer on the quarantine list for the UK.

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Re: International travel

Post by lpm » Fri Jul 03, 2020 3:20 pm

Martin_B wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 1:34 pm
I've been offered a choice:
a) take a refund on my tickets, less a hefty cancellation fee (when I'm not the one cancelling the flights!)
They are lying to you.

If you are flying to a EU destination (including UK during transition) then the EU requires passengers be given a full refund for any Covid cancelled flights. Doesn't matter if it's not a EU airline.

When I cancelled, they only offered the credit (plus a "bonus") with no direct link to their website refund page. A quick google showed tips from other people on how to get the refund, including the webpage address. Complete a quick form and the money will be with you in a couple of weeks.

There's also the credit card reclaim thing for non-delivery of what you paid for.
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Re: International travel

Post by Gfamily » Fri Jul 03, 2020 3:52 pm

lpm wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 3:20 pm
Martin_B wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 1:34 pm
I've been offered a choice:
a) take a refund on my tickets, less a hefty cancellation fee (when I'm not the one cancelling the flights!)
They are lying to you.

If you are flying to a EU destination (including UK during transition) then the EU requires passengers be given a full refund for any Covid cancelled flights. Doesn't matter if it's not a EU airline.
Ah, not quite.
For flights departing the EU, it doesn't matter whether an EU airline or not, but for flights into EU, the cancellation rights only apply if an EU airline.

https://europa.eu/youreurope/citizens/t ... dex_en.htm
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Re: International travel

Post by Bird on a Fire » Fri Jul 03, 2020 4:17 pm

headshot wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 3:17 pm
Oh, and: https://www.theguardian.com/politics/li ... 51fe2ac38a

Australia is no longer on the quarantine list for the UK.
Annoyingly Portugal is still on the list. On the one hand, the current increase in cases is restricted to a single city, which has now been locked down again. On the other, that city is where the airport is so there's a risk the workers there could be infected.

On the other other hand, the number of cases here is still much lower than in the UK, where they're not requiring anything like a strict quarantine. The travel ban seems to be largely politically motivated.
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Re: International travel

Post by dyqik » Fri Jul 03, 2020 4:54 pm

I'm not going anywhere internationally soon.

Even the Canadian border is closed...

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Re: International travel

Post by JQH » Fri Jul 03, 2020 5:02 pm

Have the Canadians started building a wall?
And remember that if you botch the exit, the carnival of reaction may be coming to a town near you.

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Re: International travel

Post by headshot » Fri Jul 03, 2020 8:25 pm

I think you mean eh wall.

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Re: International travel

Post by Martin_B » Fri Jul 03, 2020 11:06 pm

lpm wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 3:20 pm
Martin_B wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 1:34 pm
I've been offered a choice:
a) take a refund on my tickets, less a hefty cancellation fee (when I'm not the one cancelling the flights!)
They are lying to you.

If you are flying to a EU destination (including UK during transition) then the EU requires passengers be given a full refund for any Covid cancelled flights. Doesn't matter if it's not a EU airline.

When I cancelled, they only offered the credit (plus a "bonus") with no direct link to their website refund page. A quick google showed tips from other people on how to get the refund, including the webpage address. Complete a quick form and the money will be with you in a couple of weeks.

There's also the credit card reclaim thing for non-delivery of what you paid for.
Thanks for the info, but the leg of my trip which I can't get a flight for is Perth to KL (or so I've been told - I'm not sure if the travel agent knows the full details). The KL to Heathrow legs are a different airline. I might try the EU requirement when I go and see the travel agent next week, though.
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Re: International travel

Post by shpalman » Sun Jul 05, 2020 7:39 am

molto tricky

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