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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.
On 17 September the government at last announced a simplified system for international travel in light of the success of the UK’s domestic vaccine rollout, providing greater stability for industry and passengers, something we have all been waiting for! Since Monday 4 October at 4am, the previous traffic light system has been replaced by a list of red countries and territories and some simplified travel measures for arrivals from the rest of the world. Testing requirements have also been reduced for eligible fully vaccinated travellers, who will no longer need to take a Pre Departure Test when travelling to England.
And from the end of October, it is anticipated that eligible fully vaccinated passengers and those with an approved vaccine from a select group of non-red countries will be able to replace their day 2 test with a cheaper lateral flow test, reducing the cost of tests on arrival into England. More details will appear here in due course.
Please note that details of the traffic light system shown below refers to England only, for the other devolved nations, please refer to the appropriate government websites for Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland.
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.
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.
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.
For passengers returning to the UK, the Government have a two-tier status, with some countries remaining on the red list category. 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.
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:
You do not need to:
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:
ALL passengers will still need to fill in a Passenger Locator Form ahead of your return to England. UK Passenger Locator forms can be filled out on-line here. When completing your Passenger Locator Form it will be necessary to provide the booking reference for your pre-booked Day 2 PCR test.
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.
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 situation is constantly evolving. Here’s a current directory of the red list countries.
From the end of October, it is anticipated that eligible fully vaccinated passengers and those with an approved vaccine from a select group of non-red countries will be able to replace their day 2 test with a cheaper lateral flow test, reducing the cost of tests on arrival into England. More details will appear here in due course.
The Information shown in the table below for test providers is accurate to the best of our knowledge and is provided as guidance only.
As above, there are variations depending on the country you travel to, but in summary, the broad testing requirements are as follows:
Entry to destination and UK
Free – NHS App
|Download the free NHS App or visit the NHS website. You can also call 119 to request a printed document.|
72 - 48 hours before departure from the UK
Randox (From £48)
If you 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.
Fit to fly to UK (Red List Only)
72 hours before departure to the UK
Purchase at least a week before travel, with kit delivered to your home. NHS tests cannot be used for the purpose of testing.
2 Day test back in the UK
48 hours after arrival back in the UK
Randox (From £48)
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.
Passenger locator forms
Entry to UK
Follow links below to government websites.
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.
The topic of Covishield, the AstraZeneca vaccine manufactured in India, has been widely discussed in the media recently, and there are reports that some EU countries do not accept this vaccine as valid, though they accept the AstraZeneca vaccine manufactured in Europe.
Individual EU 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). The situation is constantly evolving as vaccination coverage rises across Europe, and countries are moving towards relaxing coronavirus border restrictions in order to receive summer tourists. The FCDO travel advice includes information on vaccination approval for individual countries.
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!
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.
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.
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.
For more information relating to the Coronavirus outbreak, see:
LAST UPDATE Monday 11 October 2021
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 and Adagio have 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’.
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.