Coronavirus and Travelling

Coronavirus and Travelling

There are so many websites now offering advice on how to deal with the impending menace of Coronavirus that it’s getting harder and harder to know who to listen to. Every news agency is bombarding us with tales of doom and gloom and it feels as if the world is coming to an untimely end. Well it isn’t judgement day quite yet but it is a serious situation. We wouldn’t pretend to be virus experts so won’t offer any advice except the blatantly obvious.

  • Wash your hands properly
  • Cough and sneeze into disposable tissues
  • Try to restrict physical social interaction such as shaking hands, hugging, and kissing

Seems like common sense doesn’t it? If we could all follow these rules then it wouldn’t just be Coronavirus that was restricted it would also be the common cold, flu and countless other viruses.

This isn’t about advice then, you can get that in a thousand other places. Some of which are reputable. The issue we have is with our nomadic lifestyle and the impact that a pandemic could have on it.


Planning Ahead

When we first started JWalking we considered multiple situations that could affect our travels but never ever envisaged that our travel plans could be so seriously affected by a worldwide medical pandemic. We considered our own health and our family’s health of course but the not the impact that the Coronavirus could have on travelling. Compared to the suffering it is causing and the fatalities then our travel plans are really unimportant but we will have to rethink our lives over the next few months.

As you all know we plan a few months ahead and we had booked multiple flights and a lot of accommodation overseas between now and July in multiple locations across the world. Those plans are now is disarray with travel restrictions on virtually every country which will almost certainly get stricter in the coming weeks.

Many of the countries that we were planning to visit are now insisting on self-isolation for 14 days on arrival from the UK which of course would mean we would need to book a hotel or hostel for two weeks. This obviously is not something we have planned and does not fit our complex flight/train/bus schedule at all. So it looks like some of these trips may be off. We do have travel insurance but without the UK Foreign Office changing their recommendations I’m not sure if we would be entitled to a penny. So it could cost us a lot of money.

Cancelling these trips and losing money is not the only issue of course. ‘Normal‘ holidaymakers would just stay at home but we don’t have a home so the cancellation of a trip also means that we have to find accommodation for that same period of time at even more expense. Last minute housesits are an option of course but the situation is so fluid currently and changing on a daily basis so we are treading water delaying making decisions until as late as possible.


Housesitting Issues

Even housesitting isn’t unaffected by the outbreak as the people that we housesit for may actually have their own travel plans cancelled which would mean that they don’t require sitters anymore and once again we would be ‘homeless‘ looking for accommodation. These cancellations will also be last-minute as the home-owners obviously may be reluctant to make their own holiday-cancelling decisions until the last minute. So our well organised careful planning of housesits from June to September are now all in doubt. We wait once more ……..

Self-Isolation

Another issue we are very aware of is that if we do travel abroad we may find that we are told to ‘self-isolate‘ on our return. We don’t have a home to ‘self-isolate‘ in so where would we go? Friends or family? Of course not as that would potentially impact their health. We are especially aware of our older relatives and friends that may have existing health issues too and whether our plans to visit them needs to be changed.

Hotel? Two weeks? That would be a major expense just to have to sit tight in the room of a Travelodge or Premier Inn wouldn’t it? Hopefully it doesn’t come to that but we are aware of it. And what would we do about food in a Travelodge? They don’t do room service do they?

Wonder what would happen if we were told at the airport to go home and ‘self-isolate‘ and we turned around and said that we couldn’t? Difficult situation and who would make a decision on where we went. Let’s hope this never occurs but it is on our minds.


Coronavirus and Travelling

So we aren’t making light of the Coronavirus outbreak and the terrifying potential it has to spread throughout the world but we are having to rethink and replan currently with the knowledge that this could be extremely expensive.  An unimaginable consequence of us having this crazy nomadic lifestyle.

Our final thoughts are with everyone that has been affected healthwise by this formidable virus. Travelling is unimportant compared to your health so we just hope that it doesn’t keep spreading and that the world manages to get it under control very soon.

72 comments

  1. I hear you…we were ‘between homes’ for three years (2009-2012) and so I understand the logistics of what you are facing…
    Currently, we are trying to orchestrate a move cross country (USA) and have come across some COVID-19 related bumps in the road that I think will only increase as time progresses.
    I’m thinking this is part of the planet’s new ‘normal’…which as humans we’ll learn to navigate but in the meantime it is hard to deal with –
    Peace to you on this part of your journey.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. A worrying situation for sure, Jonno, and it sounds like a logistical nightmare as well as the expense. Nobody has the feeling that this will end any time soon, do they? We are in the UK next month and starting to wonder what things will be like by then. I wish you luck, hon 💕

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s messing with a lot of people’s plans for sure but the health issues of those infected are far more important. We just have to keep assessing the situation each day. Hope your trip goes ok

      Liked by 1 person

  3. We are heading out to Portugal and Romania in a couple of weeks….no free cancellation ..i plan on taking a bottle of rubbing on board the plane. To disinfect the tray and arm rests..and hand wash…hoping for the best.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Blimey! Where were some of the places you were travelling too? I’m moving back to England in the summer and I’m already slightly concerned about what if flights get cancelled and I get stuck and can’t return. I’ve pretty much decided if it’s essential travel only then I’ll include myself in that so I can get home but then it’ll mean possibly being quarantined which is no problem as I’ll be going back to my parents house. Although I wouldn’t want to give anything to them (I gave them the flu one Christmas). Rather than cancelling I’m looking at rebooking my trips, not yet, I’ll hold out until May time but I’ll have to pay to change them around which is better than cancelling. Typically I have 3 lots of flights back to back with only 5 days between each trip…normally it wouldn’t be a problem but this year I think I’m going to have to spread them out just in case 😦

    Liked by 1 person

    • If you can self isolate at your parents that gives you some backup doesn’t it? Most flights are okay except to Italy currently, but I’m sure there will be more cancellations. Our problem is several countries outside of Europe wanting visitors to self isolate for 14 days in arrival. Just can’t do that so some last minute decisions will be needed.

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      • Yeah exactly…I have a flight to Portugal 5 days after arriving though! I’m worried about that too regarding self isolating in countries outside of Europe…one of my countries are still untouched but the transfer in Dubai might end up causing problems and of course I would hate to be the one that infects the country if I was to get it unknowingly!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. We have 3 upcoming house sits that the owners may cancel too. But we have some good friends to couch surf for the cost of cooking them dinner! We can recommend borrowing a motorhome for 2 weeks for a Coronavirus self isolation area! Order your groceries on Click and Collect and just drive up to the locker. On the bright side there is only a 3% mortality rate, so there’s a 97% chance you will survive!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Housesitting cancellations could cause a lot of problems I suppose. Like the idea of a motorhome, shame we don’t know anyone to borrow one from! I’m sure we’ll survive but a few replanning sessions might be necessary.

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  6. Its such a mess, I do hope you manage to find a solution to your travel issues and that you get to most of the places intended. I’ve got several overseas trips arranged and plan to continue as normal. Take care and I hope it all works out for you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much, I’m sure we will get ourselves sorted out eventually. May just have to roll with the changes a bit and replan as we go along. Not ideal but hopefully will work out.

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    • It will mess with lots more plans as it develops over the next few weeks I think, gonna get much worse before it gets better. Not a real problem compared to peoples health though.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Such an interesting conundrum Jonno, it is really starting to impact on travel here in Aus so I can only imagine the problems in Europe. I think you’re sensible in thinking about the ‘what ifs’ and trying to be one step ahead. There’s a lot at stake and I don’t envy you having to make these decisions, but I do appreciate you mentioning them in this post. All the best!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s something we really need to keep our eyes on Deb. The situation is changing daily in every country so we just need to be adaptable and ready to amend our plans last minute. Paying the price for our organised, book early lifestyle I guess.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Definitely a concern. At this stage our travel plans are all go but like you, obviously with a change that could all change very quickly. Lets hope its a bit more under control soon!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hope it doesn’t affect any if your plans, just keep a close eye on the news. Unfortunately I think it’s gonna get worse before it gets better.

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  9. What a massive impact it could have on your lives Jon. I feel for you and Jo with all the uncertainty and extra expense. It’s a right worry for you!! I go to the UK regularly, mainly to see my mum. She had successful cancer surgery 18mths ago but she is still very vulnerable and cannot afford to get the virus. I’m booked to see her next week but I’m thinking of cancelling for that very reason. It’s a difficult scenario and like you say one you could never of planned for!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Big problem visiting elderly or sick friends and family isn’t it? We have plans to see and stay with lots of people over the coming months that we are constantly reviewing. Just need to look at the situation daily.

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  10. I feel for you. It must be really difficult without a base. Good luck with all of your travel plans. Let’s hope that somehow this can be stopped and controlled sooner rather than later. Take care.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Hey Jon, no one could have predicted this one :-(.

    Paradoxically it may make us all safer in the long run but its a nightmare for everyone affected at the moment.

    Stay safe and healthy and I hope that you can find housesits if your plans fall through.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It really could help in the long run but short term is a nightmare. We’ll be fine, just need to start making more late plans rather than booking stuff well in advance.

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  12. Thank you for this great post, I thoroughly valued reading it. I have been very disappointed with the media’s coverage of the Coronavirus outbreak so I have recently published an article on my blog about what we should be worried about and how we can protect ourselves and others. If you have time, it would be great if you could check out my post and let me know your thoughts! Thanks 🙂

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  13. Hi Jonno, you have just written our story! House sits lined up back to back until October, we are in the states now and heading to Puerto Rico. If the home owners travel plans are interrupted then where does it leave us? Just like you, no home and the hard fact that this could get expensive! Never mind though, keep smiling and just hope that things come right sooner than later! Great read, thanks! Donna

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s an unsettling time for so many people and travel plans seem pretty insignificant when people are losing their lives. But we need to know where we’re going to be living don’t we? Hopefully it won’t end up being as bad as expected but we fear the worst.Hope your sits are all ok.

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  14. Hopefully you get an acceptable (and not too expensive) resolution to these problems soon. I’m also starting to get concerned about my trip home to see my family later in the year. My parents and nephew have compromised health so I don’t want to put them at risk, but having not seen them for 2 years I’ll be gutted if I either can’t go or have to avoid contact with them after travel.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s difficult to know what to do currently as the situation is changing daily. We’ll just keep watching and have to react accordingly although I think it will all get much worse over the coming weeks. Hope you get to travel back home.

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  15. I’ve been holding off on booking a holiday myself (even though I very much need one) because of the current situation, so I’m sure it must be having a huge impact on your plans if you’ve booked things months in advance, and I can imagine self-isolating would be a nightmare if you don’t have your own place to do it in. Hope it doesn’t come down to that! I feel awful for my friend, who is originally from Florence but lives in London, and is getting married here next month. If the quarantine spreads any further south, a lot of her friends and family might not be able to make it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Your friends wedding sounds like it could be seriously affected, let’s hope the situation improves. Good idea to delay travel plans though, we’re just reviewing on a daily basis but I fear the worst.

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    • It’s going to cause a lot of travel and holiday disruption isn’t it? I think you’re wise to put off booking anything for the time being. Feels like the situation will get worse before it gets better unfortunately.

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  16. It’s a difficult one….when watching news or reading reports it makes me swing from one opinion to another. I guess the best advice is to take the government’s advice at wherever you are at that moment in time. Safe travels.

    Liked by 1 person

    • So difficult to predict when the situation is changing from day to day. We’re expecting several of our booked trips to be cancelled plus all the summer housesits are now doubtful. Just have to keep checking and see what occurs.

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  17. I feel your confusion. We’re travelling in a little group of 7 and wondering do we wander about the countryside or head for home and hunker down. At present the countryside is a less daunting option, fresh air, keeping town visits to a minimum but sooner or later we have to go back as we’d only planned to be away for a short time and there are medical appointments and stuff to be done. Stay safe guys.

    Liked by 1 person

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