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Planning your European travel options


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I was reading an article today ( https://www.theguardian.com/business/2020/jun/16/dismay-uk-fails-join-eu-scheme-revive-tourism ) that highlighted a new EU wide app and website intending to assist with encouraging tourism by providing up to date country by country lockdown information and health requirements etc.


The website is here https://reopen.europa.eu/en (I’ve defaulted to the English version) and I’ve included a couple of screen shots on France below.


Clicking on the icons provides specific information on health, travel restrictions etc for each target country..



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Thanks for this.

As I read it we are able to travel to France without quarentining , are motor homers now going to France?

heard on the news today 1 hour delay on Eurotunnel because of volume of traffic.

I thought France were insisting on quarentining as we were so tit for tat. but maybe I have misunderstood things.

Any help advice appreciated.


Thanks Steve Kelly

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stvekay - 2020-06-21 6:02 PM

I thought France were insisting on quarentining as we were so tit for tat. but maybe I have misunderstood things.


In another posting one of the forum members did the journey in their car (essential travel I seem to recall) and apparently were just handed a leaflet inviting them to self quarantine for two weeks. It’s non-compulsory so unenforceable.


I don’t know what the ferries are doing yet though regarding their willingness to carry motorhomes for non essential journeys.

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The most recent missive from the CEO of Brittany Ferries (BF) can be read here (with an update planned for today)




On 18 June the BF CEO said


Reassurance from all ferry operators


I hope that many of you will have seen news bulletins this morning (18 June). Ferries have been the focus of a sector-wide campaign to reassure passengers about the safety measures all operators have taken on board to ensure safe travel this summer.


BBC Breakfast reported from Dover. It was good to see travel expert Simon Calder making positive points on camera and to see social distancing measures in action on one of our competitor’s vessels. Brittany Ferries has also been involved in this industry-wide campaign, and I had an early start on BBC Radio 5 Live this morning.


Reassurance is key at this time. So to reassure you, my teams have been preparing a campaign to outline all the measures being taken ahead of a resumption of passenger services. When launched next week, it should serve as a handy guide for any traveler, unsure about what can be expected on board one of our ships.


I’ve already spoken about some of the things that will be included, like the reduction in overall passenger capacity on board to ensure social distancing. But the campaign will also highlight many other things that will be different to normal, like checking in at least 90 minutes before departure. And it will reinforce important measures like wearing masks when in ports, regularly washing hands and being prepared for staggered embarkation and departure.


It’s important to note that we have already applied these measures on services running essential freight throughout the period of the crisis. So we are well practiced and we are well prepared – and I’d like to thank our crew and freight drivers for their support


However, a resumption of passenger services does rely on a change to FCO (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) and DFA (Department for Foreign Affairs in Ireland) advice, which at present restricts all but essential travel. It is also predicated on the lifting of quarantine restrictions which I have spoken about previously.


I very much hope that during Emmanuel Macron’s meeting in London with Boris Johnson today (to commemorate the 80th anniversary of General de Gaulle’s call to resist during the war) that re-opening borders will be made a priority and that this bizarre policy is reversed as soon as possible.


The second point that I have made previously concerns the gradual ramp-up of services. We are targeting the last week in June (29th) for a resumption of passenger sailings, but it won’t be possible to bring back every ship straight away.


If your sailing is affected, rest assured we will contact you as a priority. And that should be from early next week. The important point is that if you don’t hear from us, please assume that your sailing is taking place as planned.


Even if the FCO soon changes its current restrictions regarding ’non essential’ travel, and the quarantine requirements for entering the UK from Continental Europe are soon removed, until the end of August BF will have a ‘cabins mandatory’ policy and not carry foot passengers or cyclists, with not all ships operating to begin with.


There a lot of discussion about this on the Brittany Ferries Enthusiasts website, with speculation about who might get priority when BF passenger services restart and who might get ‘bumped’. For instance, if a BF customer’s earlier crossings were cancelled as a result of COVID-19 and they received a Refund Credit Note (RCN), would they be given priority over people who do not have a RCN but have a confirmed booking for (say) August or September? Would disabled travellers get any priority?






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FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Germany's coronavirus reproduction rate jumped to 2.88 on Sunday, up from 1.79 a day earlier, health authorities said, a rate showing infections are rising above the level needed to contain the disease over the longer term. copied from https://tinyurl.com/y9k3ujd2


With this type of report are We that desperate to go to Europe and How welcome will We be once there

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At the moment the governments advice is not to travel anywhere. And as Simon Calder stated your insurance will not cover your travel until the government changes its policy on travel... I checked with my Insurer and was told moment I boarded a Ferry or shuttle, my Travel and Vehicle insurance would be invalid.

The Spanish minister for tourism stated on BBC Breakfast they expect any visitors to Spain to have insurance to cover them if they became ill with Covid 19...

I have since checked some insurers will not cover you for covid19 unless you pay a higher Premium..

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ham - 2020-06-22 2:37 PM


I checked with my Insurer and was told moment I boarded a Ferry or shuttle, my Travel and Vehicle insurance would be invalid.



Who do you insure with for vehicle insurance and what were their grounds for invalidating your insurance? We must bear in mind that the FCO do not advise that essential travel should not take place so I’d have not expected a car insurer to use the FCO excuse as an all encompassing reason.

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Insurance validity was discussed a few days ago here




It’s generally understood that going abroad against the FCO’s advice would normally invalidate TRAVEL insurance, but MOTOR insurance is a different ball-game.




Regarding how willing a ferry operator might be to currently carry motorhomes for non-essential journeys, at the moment Brittany Ferries (BF) is offering freight-only serrvices (details here)




I’ve no idea what would happen if someone managed to book a BF freight crossing and then turned up at the port in a motorhome, but I suspect there would be a caustic (and well deserved) conversational exchange.

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Thats really useful, thanks for posting. Our plan was (still is?) to drive down to Ancona and get the ferry to Igoumenitsa on 21st July. We have the ferry booked (and tunnel) but will hang fire for before making a decision. We can defer the ferry for another 18 months so it may have to be next summer now.

If the FCO were to change its advice soon and allow foreign travel, and the 14 day quarantine rule when coming back to UK dropped, then it might be a starter. Looking at the website currently Austria is out of bounds to Brits, but all the other countries (France, Germany, Switzerland, Italy) en-route seem to be allowing Brits through. Of course this could all change for better or worse over the coming weeks. There are ominous noises coming out of Germany, possibly relating to the Tonnies Fleisch episode in Nord-Rhein Westfalia.


The other issue to consider is if there is a spike or second wave in transit countries whilst away.

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Also, this may be helpful, as I posted on 9 May 2020 at 11:32 AM in the "Euro Travel Ban" string:


"Be aware of limitations on your health/travel insurance.


I quote below from a recent communication from Nationwide regarding travel insurance linked to our account.


"If you have a FlexAccount or a FlexPlus current account with access to travel insurance, we want you to be aware that for any new trips booked on or after 18 March 2020, you won't be covered for events caused by the Cononavirus pandemic."


"Won't be covered for events caused by the Coronavirus pandemic" may need a little unpacking with the insurer, :-) but this seems to me a more reasonable and reasonable approach than simply declaring the whole travel insurance void on the basis of Covid.


The Nationwide travel cover is provided by UK Insurance, and I would hope that other insurers would have adopted a similarly sensible approach. The only way to be sure, of course, is to contact your insurer and ask.


Other events, such as a non-corona virus related illness or treatment for injury following a trip or fall, should still be covered as usual. Otherwise, if the whole of an annual insurance is being voided, I think folk should ask for the return of at least a part of the premium, on the basis of breach of contract by the insurer. They can't just keep the money and provide zero service.

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