a cell phone with apps on the screen

Why does my iPhone lie to me? (a genuine question)

How were the pyramids built so accurately? Did the city of Atlantis really ever exist? Are we alone in the universe? Who killed JFK? Why do intelligent people watch 'reality' TV? These are just some of the great mysteries that have puzzled scholars, scientists, and academics for years, but they all pale into insignificance compared to the biggest mystery that faces me.
a red and white rectangular sign with a blue star and a red circle

The Global Entry app can make international arrivals feel like a domestic arrival (almost!)

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) unveiled a new app in September of last year that, we were told, is designed to 'enhance security while further improving the travel experience for CBP’s trusted travelers'. Recently, I finally remembered to give the app a try and discovered that it made my arrival into LAX on an international flight feel as close to a domestic arrival as I think it will ever get.
a group of people at an airport

UK now won’t lift airport liquids restrictions until 2025

By June of this this year, all the UK's major airports were meant to have new scanners which would have meant the end on the liquid restrictions that have been in place since 2006 (yes, we've been putting up with this nonsense for nearly 2 decades). That deadline is now in tatters.
a blue sky with white clouds

Two small things that airlines do that I really wish they didn’t

For most people, truly bad experiences with airlines are not a common occurrence, and so while an airline stranding us somewhere overnight, losing our baggage for days, or cancelling our flight at the last moment, are all examples of highly stressful situations, these aren’t the things that annoy me most.
a plane wing on a snowy ground

Ok … so this was new!

If you fly with any kind of frequency, you’ll eventually encounter most situations that you’ll read about in the frequent flyer forums online. Missed connections, unplanned overnight layovers, aborted landings, violent turbulence (keep your seat belts fastened!) and storms closing airports are just some of the things that you’ll probably experience at some point during your travels.
rows of seats in an airplane

Keep your seat belt fastened (even when the fasten seat belt light is out)

In the wake of the recent serious incident on an Alaska Airlines Boeing 737 MAX 9 where a deactivated exit door blew out leaving behind a gaping hole in the fuselage and a cabin that depresuried in seconds, this is a quick reminder that it's almost always a good idea to keep your seat belt fastened, even when the fasten seat belt light is out.
a hand on a laptop

Another reason you should have a VPN when you travel

Safety and security are always the key reasons given when people talk about why it's a good idea to have and use a VPN when traveling but while that's clearly the correct thing to focus on, there's also another reason why it's a good idea to have access to a VPN when you're abroad.
a close up of a train

The Elizabeth Line: A review of the new direct service from Heathrow to central...

Part of the Elizabeth Line (formerly known as Crossrail) has been open for a few months but it was only yesterday that passengers traveling from Heathrow into the heart of London were able to do so without the need for a change of trains. As I happened to be at Heathrow anyway, I decided to take a look at the new service to see what it has to offer.
a street with a large awning and a bus stop

How my iPad “went missing” at Heathrow security

Recently, I was catching an early flight out of London Heathrow, and because I got to terminal 5 before the security lane at the First Wing opened, I decided to use the priority security lane at the north end of the terminal rather than waiting for the First Wing line to open. In hindsight, that was a poor decision.
a sunset over a body of water

Take a break and unplug…it will do you good!

I've just finished a 5 week stay at a friend's property in the Mediterranean and although the stay involved an incredible amount of work (the property is in the middle of a big reconstruction project), I've come away feeling refreshed and more relaxed than I've been for some time.
a group of machines in a building

Remember: Global Entry membership has no bearing on whether you need an ESTA to...

Thanks to the continuing enlargement of the Global Entry program and the US Visa Waiver Program, more people than ever before can now enter the United States relatively easily and without having to stand in the seemingly endless lines that some of our international airports have long been known for (I’m looking at you Miami).
a sign on the ceiling

My first-world lounge problem when traveling as a family

I'm flying over to London at the end of this week to catch up with some friends and to attend the unveiling of Virgin Atlantic's new Business Class seat for its A330 aircraft. On my outbound journey, I'm traveling alone but when I return home, I'll be accompanied by four other members of my family and this has thrown up a very first-world problem for me.
a blue sky with clouds

This is how airline elite status can make flying with a low cost carrier...

There's no doubt that the rise of the low-cost carriers has had a significant leveling effect in the travel world with airlines like Spirit, Frontier, EasyJet, and Ryanair all helping to make travel considerably more affordable for a huge number of people. For those of us with mid-tier or higher airline elite status, however, choosing a low-cost carrier over the airline with which we hold elite status can often be a poor decision. This is why.
a red caution sign on a pole

This is why you shouldn’t use PayPal’s currency conversion (a quick reminder)

I like PayPal. I make a substantial number of transactions with non-US entities and PayPal often makes my life easier. There is, however, one aspect of PayPal that I avoid at all costs - the currency conversion system - and I strongly advise everyone else to avoid it too.
a city skyline with a white building and a body of water

Singapore makes it a lot easier for vaccinated travelers to visit

Singapore has announced that it is making significant changes to its COVID-19 travel rules and that following a review of procedures, it will be discontinuing the use of Vaccinated Travel Lanes (VTLs) as well as removing the need for vaccinated visitors to take an on-arrival test.
a body of water with trees and mountains in the background

New Zealand will reopen its borders earlier than expected

I can't think of another country that has closed itself off from the rest of the world as tightly as New Zealand has over the past couple of years so it's great to be able to report that it looks like the days of the country's international isolation are coming to an end sooner than we were expecting.
a group of flags on a building

UK drops last travel restrictions + British Airways & Virgin Atlantic drop mask requirements

While guidance has remained in place in some areas, the UK population has been free of domestic Covid restrictions for almost a month and despite a sign that hospitalisations due to Covid may be on the rise, the UK government has announced that all remaining travel restrictions are being lifted and the UK's two long-haul carriers have announced an end to mask-wearing onboard.
an aerial view of a city

If you thought international travel was rebounding quickly, you may need to think again

With numerous nations now having done away with a lot of their day-to-day Covid rules and with more and more nations relaxing or discontinuing their travel restrictions, you could be forgiven for believing that everyone who has been missing international travel over the past two years is now booking trips like crazy. Apparently, however, that may not be the case.
a group of straw umbrellas on a beach

Don’t assume that you know a hotel’s award cancellation window

One of the often-mentioned major benefits of making a hotel booking with points is that points bookings are usually considerably more flexible than the cheaper cash rates on offer. Where a discounted cash rate is often non-refundable once booked, a points booking is usually considered to be cancelable, without penalty, until a few days before arrival. This, however, is not always the case so it pays to read the small print carefully before you make an award booking.
a plane flying over a runway

My approach to international travel right now

More and more counties are now reopening their borders to vaccinated international travelers so with more options of places to visit than at any other point in the past two years, you could be forgiven for thinking that I'm busy booking trips to all corners of the world to make up for lost time. That, however, isn't the case.
a park with a park and a city skyline

Australia announces reopening date for vaccinated visitors

Just a few weeks ago, the Australian government indicated that it was using Easter as a target reopening date for vaccinated visitors so it's both surprising and gratifying to suddenly be told that the country will open up considerably earlier. Now, instead of aiming to reopen at some point in April, Australia says that it will welcome vaccinated visitors in just two weeks' time.
the sun shining over clouds

Time for more countries to excuse the vaccinated from all travel testing measures

A couple of days ago, the UK announced that travelers who have been fully vaccinated will no longer have to take pre-departure tests and will not be subject to post-arrival testing either and this has already kick-started a small but significant resurgence in travel bookings which is welcome news to the beleaguered industry. Now it’s time for the news to get even better and for more countries to follow suit.
a tail of an airplane with a red white and blue stripe on it

How American Airlines nearly ruined my trip home before it had even started

Right now, I'm back home in LA and in the middle of a tier point run that I didn't really want to do, but it's only thanks to a stroke of good fortune that I actually got home on my planned date. Thanks to a rather incredible screw-up by American Airlines, my whole trip was nearly cancelled before I had a chance to board a single flight.
a blue sky with clouds

The tier point run I really didn’t want to do

Back in March, the news that the vaccine rollouts were gathering pace led to a moment of over-optimism on my part that resulted in me booking a multi-segment tier point run to get me back to LA for the upcoming holidays. The booking seemed like a good idea at the time, but with events unfolding as they have, the tier point run turned into a trip that I really didn't want to take.
a large building with a flag on top with Palace of Westminster in the background

The UK was correct in how it handled the ban on travel from Southern...

The United Kingdom was just one of the many nations that moved to ban travel from Southern Africa when the Omicron variant first came to light and it took a lot of criticism for doing so. Yesterday, those travel bans were lifted, and despite being a staunch critic of the UK administration I have to admit that on this occasion, they got things right.
a flag on a building

Recently recovered from Covid? Beware the pitfalls of traveling to England

The UK government recently tightened up the testing requirements that travelers visiting England are expected to adhere to before and after their inbound flights, and a close look at the new rules suggests that anyone who has recently recovered from Covid could face issues.
a flag flying in the air

The United States toughens up testing rules for international travel

As has been rumored for a few days, the United States government has today announced a number of measures that it says are aimed at protecting Americans from the Delta and Omicron Covid variants this winter. Among the proposals are a tightening up of the testing requirements for all travelers entering the United States from abroad.
rain drops on a window

Reality check: Governments had no option but to ban travel from Southern Africa

We've seen a lot of complaints, anger, and outrage (faux and otherwise) coming from various quarters following the recent decision taken by a significant number of nations to ban travel from southern Africa, but a lot of it seems to be coming from people missing a few key points about how the world works and what the bans are actually about.
a large airport terminal with a row of signs

The ridiculousness of the US travel bans has never been more obvious

Since the very beginning of this mess, I've been a supporter of most of the measures that we've seen put in place to try to keep people safe and to keep the death rates as low as possible and I, like most people, have done my bit to adhere to whatever rules have been set down. What I've never supported, however, is the belief that the US government's approach to the pandemic has always been based on science. It hasn't.
an aerial view of a city

Flying to England? Here are two ‘Day 2’ tests that won’t break the bank

I've been flying in and out of England reasonably frequently in the past 12 months so I have first-hand experience of how painful the cost of all the Covid tests needed to get into the country has sometimes felt. Now, however, things are a lot better, and with fully vaccinated travelers now only required to take a 'Day 2' test upon arrival, I thought that I'd take a quick look at two UK testing providers with whom I've had good experiences.
a street with a large awning and a bus stop

Heathrow Airport is now charging a drop-off fee (How to pay & How to...

In what can only be described as a pathetic nickel & dime move, Heathrow Airport has finally started to charge the £5/$6.85 drop-off fee that it has been threatening to introduce for well over a year. This post takes a look at who has to pay the fee, how the fee can be paid, and how travelers arriving at Heathrow by car can avoid paying the fee.
a flag on a building

Could the United States ban travel from the UK again?

On 8 November, the United States is reopening its borders to travelers originating in the Schengen Area, China, India, Ireland, Iran, Brazil, South Africa, and, of course, the United Kingdom, and while this is certainly a move to be welcomed, anyone taking this as a sign that US travel bans are a thing of the past could be being a little optimistic.
a statue of a man on a statue in front of a white building with United States Capitol in the background

Official: US ends travel bans (Testing requirements & vaccine exemptions announced)

Earlier this month, we were told that the United States would reopen its borders to fully vaccinated travelers from regions, countries, and states from where travel has been banned since the early months of the pandemic. Unsurprisingly, this news was greeted with a great deal of jubilation in various corners of the world but until now, we've had no firm idea what the opening would look like, what the specific requirements for travel would be and what exemptions would be permitted. Now we know.
a sign on a pole

Uh-Oh! An outlier? An overreaction? Or a sign of things to come?

COVID-19 infection rates in the UK, Germany, and the Netherlands, are now rising and in the UK's case, reaching levels not seen since January. And while the death rates in these countries aren't anywhere near the highs of last year (because the vaccines, for the most part, are doing their job), this isn't stopping some countries getting spooked at the way some infection rates are trending.
Theme Building with a round structure

Has Global Entry dropped an unpublished benefit or was LAX an outlier?

I have to admit that I'm not usually in a particularly observant mood when I get off a transatlantic flight in the United States (I've usually used up all my observational powers during the flight while writing notes for a flight review) so I'm not sure if a Global Entry benefit that no longer appears to be offered at LAX was a benefit that was just specific to LAX or if it was (and possibly still is) available elsewhere. Whichever it is, if you have Global Entry and are arriving at the Tom Bradley Terminal at LAX, your path to the big wide world just got a little more congested.
a flag flying in the sky

The UK Overhauls Its Entry & Testing Rules – Bad News For The Unvaccinated

The British transport secretary Grant Shapps (who somehow survived this week's cabinet reshuffle) has announced that England's quarantine rules, the rules surrounding the COVID tests that passengers are expected to take before embarking on their trip (to England), and the tests passengers are expected to take following their arrival in England, will be changing from next month. It's bad news for the unvaccinated.
a group of huts on stilts over water

Am I Booking Long-Haul International Travel Right Now?

I get asked a wide variety of travel-related questions every day but the one question that I'm getting asked more than any other right now surrounds my plans for future international travel. A lot of people seem to be happy to travel domestically but most also seem to be reluctant to travel long-haul and, frankly, it's not hard to see why.
a window with a blue sky

This Is Why I Don’t Like Booking Flights Through OTAs

A few months ago, when JetBlue was offering some excellent Business Class fares on its new New York - London routes, I went against a long-term policy of mine and booked a trip through an online travel agency. Specifically, I booked through Amex Travel and while I wouldn't say that my experience has put me off booking with an OTA ever again, it has reminded me why I have a policy of avoiding OTAs whenever possible.
rain drops on a window

It’s Vitally Important For Europe To Ban US Travelers (Apparently)

If the headline for this article upsets, annoys or angers you, please don’t bother complaining to me. I’m just the messenger. The sentiment expressed in the headline is based entirely on the signals being sent out by the United States government.
a flag from a wall

Dear White House, Get On With It Or Tell The Truth.

The US administration has a problem. It has been telling everyone who is prepared to listen that its Covid policies are driven "by the science" but it now finds itself in a position where that's patently untrue. There is absolutely nothing scientific about the current ban on travelers arriving from the UK, Ireland, or the Schengen Area but instead of addressing that situation, the administration appears to have decided to stick its head in the sand and do nothing about it.
a statue of a man on a statue in front of a white building with United States Capitol in the background

The US Travel Restrictions Are Clearly Pointless & They Need To Go

It's now almost 16 months since the United States first introduced legislation that prevents most travelers originating in the UK, Ireland, or any of the Schengen Area countries from visiting its shores, and just last week we heard that the ban is not going away any time soon. In the past, this ban had some merit but it's now just pointless Covid theatre.
a sunset over the ocean

We Left England Just In Time – The Government Advice Continues To Be Ridiculous

As of Monday, 19 July, most Covid-related rules governing behavior in homes and in public in England have been lifted so that life, such as it is, can get back to some kind of normality. Or at least that's what the public has been told. Unfortunately, because the UK government is led by people who would struggle to run a lemonade stand, life, for a lot of England's residents, is currently far from normal and, sadly, it's only going to get worse.
rows of seats in an airplane

Does Anyone Else Dread Flying On Short-Haul Leisure Routes?

I try my very best not to fly with low-cost carriers. I have no issue with the fact that they charge you extra for the air onboard, the fact you often have to walk the distance of a marathon course across a searing hot airfield to get to the aircraft or the fact that they frequently land nowhere near the city you thought you were heading for. That’s all part of their business model and I accept that.
a group of machines in a building

US CBP Is Now Giving 2 Years Grace For Global Entry Renewals

The pandemic has brought chaos to a whole variety of things in the travel world and the Global Entry program has not escaped unscathed. Fortunately, over the past 18 months, the US CBP has been reasonably swift to take action to try to alleviate the issues caused by the seemingly ever-increasing backlog of applications, and now, with the backlog not really getting noticeably smaller, it has extended the Global Entry grace period to two full years.
a flag flying in the sky

NEWS: No More Quarantine For Vaccinated UK Residents Returning From Amber List Countries

The UK's Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps, has just addressed Parliament to confirm that fully vaccinated UK citizens/residents arriving into England from "amber list" countries will no longer have to self-isolate upon their return to England. The devolved nations will be reviewing their rules separately and may or may not follow England's lead.
a silhouette of a city at sunset

How I Helped Friends Negotiate The US Entry Restrictions & Get To Los Angeles...

Despite the success of our vaccination program and the fact that most European countries are now welcoming visitors from the United States, the US government shows no signs of lifting the restrictions that it has in place for non-residents/non-citizens wishing to travel to the United States from the UK, Ireland, and all the countries signed up to the Schengen agreement.
a window with a blue sky

UK Airlines Trial Fast-Track Arrivals For Vaccinated Passengers

British Airways, Virgin Atlantic, and Heathrow are this week, launching a trial to prove it’s possible to quickly and easily identify and verify fully vaccinated passengers arriving in the UK as the travel industry seeks to persuade the government to relax entry restrictions for low-risk travelers.
a blue sky with clouds

Is There A Point To England’s Test & Trace (For Travelers) Program?

I've traveled in and out of England a number of times in the past few months and each time I've entered the country I've been contacted by England's NHS Test & Trace team who want to check that I'm self-isolating as required. I have no problem with this, but having now had quite a bit of experience with the Test & Trace team, I can't help but wonder if there's any point to the operation.
a hand holding a syringe

The US & UK Are Damaging Their Vaccination Projects With Their Stance On Travel...

I've been a strong supporter of most of the stronger measures that both the US and UK governments have used during the coronavirus pandemic, but we've now reached a point where both governments are sending out dangerously mixed signals that are playing into the hands of the more ignorant members of our societies.
a large building with a flag on top with Palace of Westminster in the background

Is This A New Level Of Idiocy From The UK Government?

At various times, in the past 18 months, the UK has seen shortages of one thing or another but one thing that has never been in short supply is stupidity at the very highest levels of government. After month after month of mistakes, lies, poorly executed plans, and half-baked ideas, I thought that the government had finally reached a level where it was no longer able to surprise me with its idiocy. Sadly, I may have been wrong.
flags on the side of a building

No. Americans Visiting The UK Don’t “Have To Quarantine For 10 Days”

As we finally get to a point where governments on both sides of the Atlantic start to openly acknowledge that we have to find a way to open up travel across The Pond, I keep seeing media outlets (and a well-known credit card site that poses as a media outlet) making the statement that US travelers visiting the UK currently "have to quarantine for 10 days" upon arrival. As a statement of fact, that's incorrect and it's a great example of lazy journalism.
a person wearing a mask and gloves holding a syringe

Planning An International Trip? Make Sure You Know What “Fully Vaccinated” Means

Although governments around the world are still struggling to come together to agree on a way forward for a COVID passport (or something akin to a COVID passport), more and more countries are saying that they will accept "fully vaccinated" visitors from later this year. On the one hand that sounds promising but, on the other hand, it could spell problems for travelers who don't read the small print.
a hand holding a device

Review: The UK’s HALO Home Covid-19 Test (I Will Be Avoiding It)

I've written about the UK's HALO COVID-19 test quite a few times because it's a non-invasive, cheap, and easy to take test that I've taken on multiple occasions. Now, however, I find myself having to write about the test yet again following a less than satisfactory experience earlier this month.
a box with a device and text on it

Has British Airways Got The Key To Unlock The Travel World

If you're one of the lucky ones who has been able to travel internationally in recent months you'll know all about the circus that can surround pre-departure Covid-19 tests, and if you're reading this while waiting for your chance to finally get back to exploring the world you should know that it's a circus that you'll soon have to deal with too.
a blue package on a wood surface

Booking The UK’s HALO Covid Test? Be Careful!

Up until recently I've had no reason to be anything but satisfied with the HALO Verify test, but that's probably only because I had only used the test when time wasn't of the essence. If you're considering using the HALO Verify COVID-19 test before you fly out of the UK or if you're considering using it as part of the 'test to release' program, you should read on.
a flag flying in the sky

Understanding England’s Covid Travel Traffic Light System

As had been expected, the UK's Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has announced that England will be introducing a "traffic light" system from 17 May which will dictate what COVID tests travelers arriving from different counties will require when visiting England and what, if any, isolation measures they'll be expected to take. As this system will affect travelers wishing to visit England and well as residents of England wishing to vacation abroad, I thought that I'd take a closer look at how this system will operate.
a group of machines in a building

Some Global Entry renewals are processing without interviews

Whether you're applying for access to the US Global Entry program for the first time or if you're renewing your membership, you're usually required to attend an interview at a Global Entry processing center (usually an airport or an embassy) before your membership is approved or renewed. Right now, however, some memberships are being renewed without the need for an interview.
a red background with white numbers and a yellow letter

Enough Is Enough. Maintaining A UK Travel Ban Into The Summer Is Unacceptable

I've spent the past year supporting every measure that scientists have said are needed to help us beat back the coronavirus, and I've adhered to all the conditions imposed during three full lockdowns here in the UK, but some of the new messaging that came out of the UK over the weekend goes too far. Worse still, it's messaging that could cause a good-deal of harm.
a beach with blue water and hills with Whitehaven Beach in the background

Amex Carried Out A Travel Survey & These Are Some Of The Results

Between 15 and 24 January 2021, American Express ran a series of polls across various countries to see how people were feeling about travel this year, travel in the future, and their feelings on travel in general. There isn't anything hugely surprising in the results (although I'm not sure I understand the logic of paying more for your next trip just because you didn't take one in 2020) but as people seem to love a survey, I thought I'd post the results that Amex has made public.
a bridge over a river with cars and buildings in the background

Dreaming Of Travel: Budapest – A City In Pictures (And A Few Words)

I don't usually write about the many places I'm fortunate enough to visit because destination reviews aren't really my forte and there are just too many tastes to cater to. However, as most of us still can't travel internationally and as it's nice to be able to dream of visiting great places (and briefly forget about what's going on around us), I thought I'd resurrect some pictures of a trip I took to Budapest and shine a light on a city that really surprised me. I'm not about to write an in-depth review of my visit to the Hungarian capital (I can't imagine that being interesting to most readers) but I thought I'd share a few images from my trip to a city that really surprised me.
a hand holding a device

The UK’s HALO Verify COVID Test (Non-Invasive) Is Good For Travel To The US...

I may have to travel towards the end of next month so I've been looking into which coronavirus tests are accepted by the United States (my destination) and the United Kingdom (the country I'll be returning to) and to my surprise, I've discovered that one of the easiest tests to take (the one that's not invasive at all) is an approved test for both the UK and the US. That's great news for the squeamish and for families.
a flag flying in the air

500,000 Dead – Time To Call Out The Covidiots

As the United States passes the tragic mark of half a million deaths as a direct result of the coronavirus pandemic, it's important to make sure that we learn as many lessons as possible from the past 12 months. Governments and scientists will have their own lessons to learn but for everyone else, one of the key things to remember will be just how many know-nothing idiots were telling us that Covid-19 is "just another bad flu".
a city skyline at night with lights reflecting on water

San Diego Airport Now Offers On-Site COVID-19 Testing…But Be Careful.

San Diego Airport has partnered with Carbon Health to offer on-site coronavirus testing that looks like it may be useful for people departing to destinations that will require them to show proof of a negative coronavirus test before they travel. There are, however, one or two things you should keep in mind before you book a test.
a white airplane with blue stripes on the tail

Israel Extends Its Travel Ban Into March

Some links to products and travel providers on this website will earn Traveling For Miles a commission that helps contribute to the running of...
a blue sky with clouds

The Time A Trip Nearly Went Very Wrong Before It Had Even Started

Having things go wrong during a trip is nothing new for most frequent flyers, but sometimes things fall in such a way so as to make you start to wonder if the travel Gods have decided to remind you who's really in charge of a trip's destiny.
a group of poles on a path next to a beach

Flying To Hawaii? Here’s How To Find An Approved Covid Testing Site

If you're planning a visit to Hawaii, one of the most important jobs you'll have to check off your to-do list before you travel is to get and pass a Covid test from an approved testing center.
an aerial view of an airport

The UK Reveals Full Details Of Hotel Quarantine

On Monday 15 February, the UK government is introducing a 10-day supervised quarantine for travelers arriving into England from countries the government has put on its travel "red list". Details of the quarantine rules and procedures have been drip-fed to the public over a period of weeks but with the new rules set to come into effect in under 4 days' time, full details have now been published.
a flag on a pole

Amusing: UK Government Quarantine Portal Went Down In Minutes

Today is the day that the UK Government was due to release all the remaining details of its mandatory supervised quarantine program, and today was supposed to be the day that travelers would be able to book their quarantine hotel accommodation and the PCR tests that they'll need to take while in quarantine. Unsurprisingly, things haven't gone according to plan.
a large white building with a dome with St Paul's Cathedral in the background

UK Announces £1,750/Person Government-Supervised Quarantine Plans

The UK's Health Minister Matt Hancock has finally announced further details of the government's supervised quarantine scheme that is set to come into force from 15 February, as well as revealing plans for fines and potential prison sentences for anyone evading the new restrictions.
a large building with a flag on top with Palace of Westminster in the background

Is The UK Government About To Make Another Big Error With Quarantine Rules?

Over the weekend, reports emerged in the UK press suggesting that the British government is considering making changes to its quarantine rules for travelers arriving from countries that are not on the UK's "red list". Assuming the reports are accurate (they probably are), there's an excellent chance that the government is about to add to its ever-lengthening list of pandemic mistakes.
a flag on a pole

UK Government-Supervised Quarantine Is Coming On 15 February (It’s A Mess)

The UK government has finally confirmed that it will be introducing its long-awaited supervised quarantine from 15 February. With just ten days to go to the implementation of this plan, you'd be forgiven for thinking that most of the details had been agreed and that the government was now just working through the finer points that need to be ironed out. Sadly and unsurprisingly, that's not the case.
a woman sitting on a boat in front of a body of water

The UK Has Now Banned Travel From The UAE (Bad Luck “Influencers”!)

Over the past couple of weeks, and as it battles to try to get its coronavirus infection rates under control, the UK has been announcing new restrictions on international travel. Pre-departure testing rules for all international travelers have been introduced, all travel corridors have been suspended, travel from an entire continent has been banned and government-supervised quarantine measures have been announced. Now, as new variants of COVID-19 continue to raise fears, one of the world's current busiest air routes has been shut down.
a flag flying in the sky

The UK Will Introduce Mandatory Hotel Quarantine Rules

For the past few days, there have been rumors going around that the UK government was considering implementing Australia-style mandatory hotel quarantine measures on international travelers as the country tries to stop the inflow of new variants of the coronavirus. Today, the UK's Prime Minister and Home Secretary both confirmed that such measures are on their way.
a flag flying in the air

The United States Travel Bans Are Back & South Africa Has Been Added

Exactly a week ago, people living in Europe were given a glimpse of hope that they would soon be allowed to travel to the United States when Reuters announced that on the order of outgoing President Donald Trump, the United States would be lifting the restrictions that have banned most travelers from Europe, the UK, and Brazil from entering the country since March. Just hours later, the incoming administration put those hopes on hold.
a city next to the water

Israel Effectively Bans International Air Travel For The Rest Of January

Israel may currently lead the world in terms of the percentage of the population that have been given their first dose of a coronavirus vaccine but the country has also seen a significant surge in new coronavirus cases in recent weeks and, with fears growing that a new and potentially more deadly variant of the virus is being imported into the country, Israel's government has taken action.
a statue of a man on a statue in front of a white building with United States Capitol in the background

The United States May Introduce Quarantine For International Travelers (It Hasn’t Yet)

President Biden issued a series of executive orders yesterday as he starts to implement his administration's agenda and, unsurprisingly, one of the key focus areas for the new administration is the current pandemic and the spread of COVID-19.
a blue sky with clouds and a logo

How To Earn Airline Miles & Points Through Airbnb [2021 Edition]

If you're in the ever-growing group of travelers who are choosing to book vacation rentals over hotels, it's important you realize that you don't have to pass up on earning miles and points just because your chosen accommodation isn't part of a major corporation. Sometimes it may take a bit of effort to maximize your earnings, but the earning opportunities are still there. You just have to know where to look.
Theme Building with a round structure

LAX Now Offers Standard & Rapid COVID Testing – Details Here

LAX rolled out on-site COVID testing in November & December last year but, at the time, the program was being called a "pilot sample collection program" and it only offered tests that take 24 hours to turn around. Now, in 2021, the COVID testing at LAX is considerably more than a pilot program, the turnaround time for standard tests is shorter, and rapid testing has been introduced.
rain drops on a window

Yesterday, I Received A Simple But Sharp Reminder Of How Real This Pandemic Is

So far, I've been very fortunate. None of the people that I care about most has contracted COVID-19, no one I know has died, and no one I know has become dangerously ill. Yes, just like for millions of other people, the pandemic has affected my life negatively in numerous other ways (some worse than others), but when it comes down to the ultimate price this pandemic can extract, I've been spared. 
a window with a blue sky

Trump Orders Removal Of Select US Travel Bans But Biden Will Rescind That Order

Yesterday evening Reuters announced that on the order of outgoing President Donald Trump, the United States would be lifting the restrictions that have banned most travelers from Europe, the UK, and Brazil from entering the country since March. Swiftly, however, the incoming administration made it very clear that these bans would be staying in place.
a flag on a pole

Big News: The UK Is Closing All Travel Corridors On Monday

The UK is due to impose pre-departure COVID testing rules for all international arrivals from Monday and, this morning, it banned most travel to/from South America, Panama, and Portugal. Just now, however, the UK government has gone a step further and announced that all its travel corridors are being closed from 04:00 on Monday.
a statue of a man with his arms out with Christ the Redeemer in the background

Wow. The UK Just Banned Travel From An Entire Continent

Thursday is the day on which we've come to expect the UK government to tell us which countries it's adding to its travel corridor list and which it's removing and, on the whole, we don't usually see too many big surprises when the announcements are made. Yesterday, however, was no ordinary Thursday.
a flag on a building

[Updated] The UK Will Require Pre-Departure COVID Testing from Monday

Last week the British government indicated that it would be bringing in rules to require all travelers wishing to enter England to provide proof of a negative COVID test before departure. Earlier this week the government announced that pre-departure tests would be required from Friday, 15 January. Now, that timeline has been pushed back.
a flag flying in the air

United States Will Require Pre-Departure COVID Testing From 26 January

The United States has finally caught up with a significant number of other major nations (you know you're doing badly when you're behind the UK!) and has announced that it will require all travelers wishing to enter the country to show proof of a negative COVID test before they embark on their journey.
The National Gallery with columns and a dome on the side

No Entry To The UK Without A Negative COVID Test (From Next Week)

Few major national governments have done more to deserve the "acting after the horse has bolted" award than the British government and, in what I presume is a final push to make sure that no other country comes up on the rails and steals the award at the last minute, the British Government has now said that will require proof of a negative COVID test for anyone wishing to visit England from next week.
a blue box with white text and a barcode on it

The Sofitel Heathrow T5’s COVID Test Qualifies For England’s “Test To Release” Program

The UK government currently imposes a mandatory 10-day quarantine on visitors arriving into England from a wide variety of countries around the world (including the US). Since the middle of December, however, visitors have been able to shorten that quarantine period to as little as 6 days thanks to the 'Test To Release' program that was introduced. A little surprisingly, the COVID test available at the Sofitel Heathrow T5 qualifies for this program.
a building with snow on the side

Switzerland Shows Us How Not To Deal With Travel In The Time Of COVID...

I'm sure there are a wide variety of things that Switzerland is great at doing (making chocolates and making watches are just two that spring to mind) but it's becoming increasingly clear that the country's leadership is more than a little clueless when it comes to dealing with travel in the time of COVID.
Theme Building with a round structure

LAX Is Now Offering COVID Testing At Three Locations

To help get passengers cleared to travel to their chosen destinations, various airlines (American, United, Delta, etc...) have started to offer pre-departure testing at select locations around the United States as well as offering access to at-home testing options. Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) is now doing its bit to help people travel safely by offering its own COVID-19 testing at three separate terminals.
a large building with a flag on top with Palace of Westminster in the background

England Will Give A Quarantine Exemption To Select Business Travelers & Professions

England has been imposing 14-day quarantines on travelers arriving from most parts of the world since the middle of the summer but, from 16 December, that quarantine is period set to be reduced to just five days for travelers who test negative for Covid-19 on day five. Now the government is going a step further by offering a full exemption from quarantine for select business travelers and select professions.
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Taking A COVID Test At The Sofitel Heathrow T5

Recently, I took a trip back home to Los Angeles, and in the spirit of being a good traveler, I decided to take a Covid test before I flew out just to check that I wasn't asymptomatic and at risk of infecting all around me. With the Sofitel Heathrow T5 being very convenient and now offering Covid tests bundled with a room rate ("test and rest"), that's where I chose to take the test.
rain drops on a window

2021 Is Unlikely To Be An Exciting Travel Year For Me (But That’s Ok)

Some links to products and travel providers on this website will earn Traveling For Miles a commission that helps contribute to the running of...
airplanes parked at an airport

AA & BA To Launch Free Covid-19 Trials On Select Transatlantic Routes

American Airlines has recently started offering Covid-19 tests (that customers have to pay for) on a number of its routes from the United States to the Caribbean and Central America. Now the airline is joining forces with British Airways to trial an enhanced free Covid-19 testing program for passengers traveling on select flights between the United States and Europe.
a person wearing a mask and gloves holding a syringe

Breaking: First Coronavirus Vaccine Appears To Be 90% Effective

In news that's only just breaking, biotech developers Pfizer and BioNTech say that they have developed a coronavirus vaccine that was found to be more than 90% effective in preventing Covid-19 in research participants.
a large building with a flag on top with Palace of Westminster in the background

We’re About To Get Locked Down For The Second Time

Today and tomorrow (and possibly for a few days after tomorrow), a large part of the world will be concentrating on events going on back home in the US. I, however, can't help but focus on the fact that from 00:00:01 this Thursday morning, England will be entering into its second lockdown of the year. As I happen to be sheltering in England right now, that's a prospect that I'm not looking forward to.
an aerial view of an airport

London Heathrow Hotels To Offer Covid-19 Testing With Room Bookings

Arora Group is a corporation that owns a number of airport properties in the UK which are all operated under the banners and branding of well-known hotel chains like Marriott, IHG, and Accor. In the coming days and weeks, the London Heathrow hotels owned by Arora will begin offering room rates which, amongst other things, will include a test for Covid-19.
a flag on a pole

The UK Government Rules Out Airport Testing As A Way To Avoid Quarantine

The UK currently imposes a mandatory 14-day self-quarantine on anyone arriving into the country from somewhere that isn't on its list of low-risk locations and, for the past few months, various travel industry leaders have been lobbying the government to offer alternatives to quarantine. The principal suggestion for an alternative has revolved around the government testing arriving passengers for Covid-19 and then allowing those who test negative to bypass self-isolation but, as of earlier today, that course of action has been firmly ruled out.
a group of poles on a path next to a beach

Hawaii Will Accept Negative Covid Tests From 15 October

Hawaii Governor David Ige yesterday announced a measure that sure to be music to the ears of the Hawaii hospitality industry as well as to thousands of people who have been waiting for a sign that they can, once again, visit the Aloha State. From 15 October, visitors to the islands will be allowed to skip quarantine if they can produce a negative Covid test.
a large glass building with a lot of windows

Global Entry, SENTRI & NEXUS fees may be about to increase

Global Entry, SENTRI, and NEXUS are programs offered by the United States Customs & Border Protection Bureau (CBP) which offer expedited immigration procedures to travelers considered low-risk by the US authorities. The fees for these programs haven't changed in years but a new filing by the CBP suggests that the bureau will be seeking to increase the fees charged by two of the three programs while the fee charged for the third will decrease slightly.
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What Are Your Rights If An Airline Cancels Your Flight (Covid-19 Edition)

This post aims to inform readers with bookings to/from/within the United States and/or the European Union (and select associated nations) what their rights are when an airline cancels their flight(s) in the era of Covid-19.
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Is The Briggs & Riley “Simple As That Lifetime Guarantee” As Good As Is...

I've been a big fan of Briggs & Riley for a number of years. I like quite a few of the ranges the luggage maker offers and I love the idea behind the lifetime guarantee that Briggs & Riley says it operates, but I've never had the need to rely on the integrity of the warranty that helps Briggs & Riley stand out from the pack. That has just changed.

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