Travel During Pandemic

Instagram @GoneSunWhere 
My kids and I on board Virgin Airlines to Montego bay

My husband. Our children and I spent two months in Jamaica during the global pandemic. The latter part of 2020 to be precise. The world had not too long since come out of the global lockdown. Travel during a pandemic was quite an experience. 

We flew long haul from London Heathrow to Montego bay during the global pandemic. Economy travel via virgin Atlantic. Heathrow was quite busy and we didn't spend as much time as normal queuing. Or being asked to separate small liquids and digital gadgets into trays. Which was somewhat of a silver lining. 

The plane was surprisingly full. Minus a handful of solo seats kept empty between any middle row passengers who weren't travelling together.

All. Except the under threes had to wear a face mask. For the duration of the flight to Montego Bay. Except when eating and drinking of course. Thankfully our youngest was exempt from wearing a mask. Being only two years old. He was so well behaved throughout the flight bless him.

Different airlines had different policies regarding the masks. So do your research. Some other airlines were apparently insisting that even toddlers wore masks! 

The 7 hour flight out actually seemed to fly by. No pun intended! With films to watch. A meal and snacks handed out by airline staff as usual. Duty free was still available too. At the time. London wasn't yet back in tier 4 lock down status. During transit to Montego bay. 

Arriving in Jamaica. We had our temperatures taken and were quizzed on our health. Plus possible contact with any infected individuals. 

Jamaicans were very strict. Even requesting a mask be worn by our two year old. In the airport. On the Knutsford express coaches and at the hotel resorts. 

Temperatures are taken each time you enter a restaurant at holiday resorts in Jamaica. Seating is spaced out in restaurants. With masks to be worn in all public spaces. Except for the beaches and pools. Temperatures were even taken in some supermarkets.

Let me tell you. It ain't no fun wearing a face mask in the heat. 

I was quite surprised that so many Jamaicans were witnessed out and about in the heat of the day. Sitting around, or walking down the street with masks on. We even spotted a guy on a jet ski rocking a face mask! 

Although travel during a pandemic was an experience filled with ups and downs. Travel during pandemic was a welcome distraction for us all. The immune boosting effects of vitamin D. Lung cleansing Sea air and family time spent. Not in front of the TV was definitely worth it. The resorts had lots of entertainment throughout each day. The pandemic cleaning protocols witnessed by each hotel and resort we visited were excellent. With Hiltons Covid protocol the best out of the many hotels and resorts we visited. See my full hotel list at following link :

It sure was nice to get away from the cold. Dark northern hemisphere of England. Jamaica during October and November 2020 was less busy than usual. And that was a dream for us. As was the enforcement of a curfew from 9pm until 5am. It meant peace and quiet at appropriate times. Such a noisy, and potentially dangerous country could do with a permanent curfew if you ask me! The hotels and resorts were able to keep their entertainment going until 11pm, which was perfect.

The beaches were pristine. Without the irritation of too many people to contend with. Warm winter sand and sea. Even on a cool. Cloudy day the Caribbean sea still stays warm. 

We had to fill in a form to get back into London without any glitches. Back at Heathrow we didn't even have our temperature taken and swiftly went through arrivals. We had to self isolate for 14 days and three police officers paid us an unexpected visit! "Just checking that you're self isolating since getting back from Jamaica". They shouted through the communal hallway. As if trying to let our nosy neighbours know what we've been up to. We felt like guilty criminals I tell you!

My only regret was trying to save money by getting connecting return flights. The airlines put us through undue stress booking us onto connecting flights in Canada. Where Canada are not allowing layovers for more than 24 hours. Our layover was supposed to be for 48 hours. Now we're currently in a tedious battle to get compensated for the wasted money and time. 

The staff at Montego bay Airport weren't helpful. Even as a family with young kids. 

If you are planning any air travel between now and the future. Just spend extra to take a flight with no stops. Each country has different policies regarding pandemic travel. Airlines have no problem taking your money. Without informing you of any important factors. 

Travel savings

In the end we travelled back via a nonstop trip with virgin Atlantic. This time around. The flight back to London was very different. Every single seat was vacant. No social distancing whatsoever. Uncomfortable. Late night trip. As our original flight had been changed to an evening one. Not only that. But the aircraft was also severely delayed. 

I shed a lot more light on how it was travelling through Jamaica during the current pandemic. Click the following link to see holiday photos. Read my travel tips and hotel reviews.

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