UPDATE: August 6th, 2020
The Department of State advises all U.S. citizens to read the country-specific Travel Advisories and U.S. Embassy COVID pages for updates on the impact of COVID-19 worldwide.
The COVID-19 pandemic continues to affect countries differently. Challenges to any international travel at this time may include mandatory quarantines, travel restrictions, and closed borders. Foreign governments may implement restrictions with little notice, even in destinations that were previously low risk. If you choose to travel internationally, your trip may be severely disrupted, and it may be difficult to arrange travel back to the United States.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO
Global Level 4 Heath Advisory – DO NOT TRAVEL
The Department of State advises U.S. citizens to avoid all international travel due to the global impact of COVID-19. In countries where commercial departure options remain available, U.S. citizens who live in the United States should arrange for immediate return to the United States, unless they are prepared to remain abroad for an indefinite period. U.S. citizens who live abroad should avoid all international travel. Many countries are experiencing COVID-19 outbreaks and implementing travel restrictions and mandatory quarantines, closing borders, and prohibiting non-citizens from entry with little advance notice. Airlines have cancelled many international flights and several cruise operators have suspended operations or cancelled trips. If you choose to travel internationally, your travel plans may be severely disrupted, and you may be forced to remain outside of the United States for an indefinite timeframe. LEARN MORE HERE
March 12, 2020
The last 48 hours have been a whirlwind of information so I wanted to write to you today to share further information and some suggestions as you map out your travel plans for the next few months. While the decision to travel by any means during the Coronavirus epidemic is a very personal one, I wanted you to understand where the industry stands at this time and provide you with information (much of which is changing daily) to help you make your own decisions.
On March 11th, the US State Department issued a Global Level 3 Health Advisory advising all US citizens to reconsider travel abroad as many areas of the world are now experiencing COVID 19 outbreaks and taking steps to limit traveler mobility including quarantines and border restrictions. Countries that currently do not have restrictions in place MAY restrict travel without notice.
FLIGHTS: President Trump signed a Presidential Proclamation which suspends the entry of most foreign nationals who have been in certain European Countries at any point during 14 days prior to their scheduled arrival into the US. The travel ban will last 30 days beginning Friday.
US citizens, legal permanent residents and (generally) immediate family members of US citizens will be allowed to enter the US through one of 11 CDC approved airports including Atlanta, Dallas Fort Worth, Detroit, Newark, Honolulu, New York JFK, Los Angeles, Chicago O’Hare, Seattle, San Francisco and Washington Dulles.
Many of our airline partners have instituted flexible change policies for new and existing reservations. But please note, unless a flight has been “cancelled” there is no option for a refund (unless it was a fully refundable ticket) so please get in touch so we can help you understand your options.
CRUISES: Several large cruise lines including Princess and Viking cruise lines have halted their sailings for the next 60 days. Most cruise lines are offering a 100% FCC (Future Cruise Credit) if you cancel up to 48 hours prior to departure. Please note that in most cases, this FCC is good through the end of 2022. This is a unique offer we have never seen before, but certainly apropos for these times in that it offers the traveler a high level of flexibility and time to watch as the situation evolves. If you do have a current cruise booked and choose to cancel, please understand that each individual cruise line’s cancellation and refund policy will apply. We are here to help you ascertain what those policies are for your specific cruise.
A final note on cancellations. If you have paid in full for a trip (cruise, land or air) and have decided to cancel, in many cases, it is best to wait until closer to departure, even up to 14 days prior. Many cruise lines and airlines may choose to cancel departures or may modify their cancellation and refund policies further as this situation progresses. Travel Protection (unless it is Cancel for Any Reason) does not cover cancellations due to travel advisories, fear of travel etc…
We all hope the situation stabilizes soon, but while it is evolving it is important to refer to verified information sources. In addition to the US Department of State advisory referenced above, we also recommend the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) and WHO (World Health Organization) as the best resources at this time.
Above all, know that while it is wonderful planning all your travel dreams in good times, I am also here in these more challenging travel times, to ensure your best interests are served. Thank you for your trust and support.
Your Riverdale Travel Team