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your go-to guide to all things COVID-19

A global pandemic, unprecedented times, the new normal, these are all terms we’ve come to hear regularly over the last few months and we don’t know about you but we want (and need) something to look forward to. We understand there’s still some uncertainty and you may be a little anxious to book a holiday right now but that’s why it’s time to put your next trip in the hands of the travel experts…that’s us!

Our Managing Director Lesley Rollo said this:

In the last few months our team have taken over 20,000 calls, amended around 1,900 holidays, processed approximately 8,000 refunds and have been working relentlessly to keep up with everything that’s going on and keep in close touch with our suppliers to make sure we have the most up-to-date information for you. We want to reassure you that yes, while these may be challenging times, we are here to make sure you don’t miss out on an amazing holiday. We’ve introduced our new Covid-19 pledge and  flexible booking policy on all our holidays meaning your holiday and money is secure if your situation changes.  Our expert team are also on hand to answer any questions you may have. Don’t just take our word for it, check out our online customer reviews and see for yourself why you can put your holiday in our capable hands.

Still want more? Check out what our customers are saying on Feefo.

COVID-19 has been with us a while now, and even though hope is on the horizon with the vaccine being rolled out across the nation, we appreciate there may still be some uncertainty around booking a holiday. That’s why we’re created this page which has everything you need to know about booking a holiday with us during this time. Whether you’re looking to book a new trip, have an existing booking or just have questions, let this page be your go-to guide to all things COVID-19.

Whatever you’re planning, we’ve got you covered, guaranteed to make out there easy again.

ALREADY BOOKED?

Here’s all the information you need about your upcoming trip.

Update on 18th January: if you are due to depart in the next 2 weeks our team will contact you, and we are working in departure date order. Please bear with us, we will be in touch as soon as we can. 

Departing in the next 30 days?

So you’ve got your trip booked and are getting ready to go but unfortunately you’re no longer able to travel, so what’s next?

For all holidays, whether this is flight-only or package (flight + hotel) bookings, one of our travel experts will contact you shortly about rebooking. By rebooking your trip to a later date, not only does it mean you won’t miss out on your dream holiday but you will also be doing your part to massively support the travel industry during these challenging times. If you do not wish to rebook, then we will issue you with a credit note to the value of your trip. If your trip is flight only, then we will work with our airline partners on your behalf to get a refund. Please be aware that while we are trying our hardest to get this quickly, due to the high volume of requests on the airlines the timeline for refunds may vary.

We understand for some this may not be the ideal solution but the travel industry needs you and we ask for your ongoing patience and support during this time. Please sit tight and be assured we will be in touch soon. If a refund is still your preferred option there will be details of how to apply for one on your credit note.

Departing beyond 30 days?

You’ve got your trip booked and are getting ready to go but unfortunately you’re no longer able to travel, so what’s next?

For all holidays, whether this is flight-only, package (flight + hotel) bookings, we ask you give us a little time to work through the high volume of requests that we are dealing with. Your request is very important to us and we understand you may have been contacted directly from the hotel or airline you were due to travel or stay with. It’s not that we aren’t aware of these changes, it simply means our partner may have a different process to us.

We ask for your patience during this time, however we understand if you wish to speak with someone straight away then please contact your local travel expert who you can discuss your options with and if needed arrange for a credit note to be issued.

We understand for some a credit note may not be the ideal solution but the travel industry needs you and we ask for your ongoing patience and support during this time.

Already amended your trip but still have questions?

You booked your trip but due to the ongoing situation in that country you were not able to go, you’ve since amended but you still have a question or are looking to further amend your trip? Then please get in touch with one of our helpful team who will be able to assist you further.

Credit note explained

We know for some customers a credit note is not the ideal outcome but by doing so, not only does it mean you will have cash in your virtual pocket for when you can rebook that holiday of a lifetime, it also means you will be doing your part to massively support the travel industry during these challenging times. Having a credit note is almost like having savings in the bank but for a holiday instead, and who doesn’t want that! We hope we can count on you for support and understanding and you can be confident that when you are ready to book again we will make it a once in a lifetime holiday. You will see that a refund is mentioned on your credit note, the full terms and conditions of your credit note can be found here.

Already received a credit note?

Firstly, thank you for being a travel industry superstar supporter! If you were issued a credit note earlier in the year, it may have had an expiry date of September or December 2020, but here at Travelbag the team have been working hard on making sure you get the most from it, with that, we are happy to say we’ve extended your credit note validity to October 2021. But make sure you book your next trip by March 2021 to not miss out. This extension gives you even more time to rebook that holiday with us at a later stage. How great is that!

You will see that a refund is mentioned on your credit note, the full terms and conditions of your credit note can be found here.

THINKING ABOUT BOOKING?

Want to book a holiday but not sure where to go or where to start? We know there’s some uncertainty but we don’t want that to stop you booking an amazing trip, so why not put your plans in the hands of the travel experts, that’s us! Here’s all the information you will need ahead of booking that next adventure.

Click here for FAQs

For more information about the COVID-19 insurance, click here.

COVID Pledge

We know that planning a holiday can be challenging at the moment. That’s why we’ve introduced our COVID Pledge. If you or anyone in your party is unable to travel due to coronavirus, your trip – and your money – is protected*. And your booking is automatically covered, so you don’t need to lift a finger.

*Please note, you will be covered up to a maximum of £5,000 per person, as per the value shown on your first invoice/receipt from your original Travelbag booking. Cover is valid only for items and components as detailed on your first itinerary from Travelbag. Any components that are amended or rebooked at a later date are not covered.

The COVID Pledge covers package holiday bookings only; it is not valid on flight-only bookings. Cover is valid for new bookings that were first booked on or since 1st January 2021. The cover cannot be added retrospectively to bookings made before this date.

Please click here to see full terms and conditions.

Our flexible booking policy explained

We know that plans change and our new flexible booking policy has been tailor-made for you, so that if plans have change, then we can change too. So what’s included in our policy? Here’s a breakdown of all the things we’ve now included when you book a holiday with us. Please make sure you read our terms and conditions as there might be some variations depending on the type of holiday you book with us.

  1. No amendment fees:If you are unsure about travelling or travel restrictions change, we will waive our amendment fee for FREE up to 45 days before you depart! Normally these would apply, but we know right now things might be out of your hands and we don’t want you to pay for this.
  2. Low deposits:We’ve reduced our deposits to as little as £100 per person per booking, meaning you can have peace of mind that your holiday is secure with us but you will still have a little more cash in your pocket.

Optional travel insurance

When you book a holiday with Travelbag, we give you the option of adding standard travel insurance to your booking, at an additional cost. This covers you for things such as…

  • Medical Expenses for Medical Emergency & Repatriation, including COVID-19 related expenses (up to £10,000,000)
  • Trip Cancellation & Curtailment (up to £5,000)
  • Personal Luggage(up to £2,000)
  • Personal Liability (up to £2,000,000)
  • 24hr emergency helpline in place should you need us.

This policy also covers you if your trip is affected due to COVID-19, such as cancellation and medical reasons.

A full breakdown of the policy can be found here.


Visit one of our shops

Some customers may prefer to search for their trip on our website, some might prefer to talk over the phone but others may prefer to meet with one of our knowledgeable travel experts in person. Whatever you prefer, we’ve got you covered. For those who prefer to speak in person, we have opened up the following shops for your convenience.

To make sure we are in line with Government advice, please call one of the shops below and make an appointment to meet with one of our team. At this time we are sorry to say we cannot offer walk-ins, if you have any questions you can ask one of the team when making the booking.

  • Solihull: 0121 667 9597
  • Winchester: 01962 658 288
  • Cheltenham: 01242 807 832
  • Chester: 01244 455 888

So far we’ve opened these shops, with a plan to open more but the team are still working behind the scenes at the other locations, so reach out to your local contact who will be happy to have a chat.

Advice & know-how

We work closely with the Government, tourist boards and suppliers to make sure we have all the up to date information when it comes to travel. We understand sometimes it can be confusing to know where to begin and the messaging isn’t always the clearest but that’s why we are here, to take the confusion out of it.

For example, did you know the FCO has changed its name to the FCDO? Confusing right? Well, that’s why we’re here – to keep you informed of these changes. Let us do the hard work for you.

We’re following the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development’s office (FCDO) advice closely to ensure we have the most up-to-date information available. Click here if you are looking to travel to a particular country and need more information. Alternatively you can call one of our experts and they will be more than happy to help.

What our customers are saying about booking with us

We can tell you how great we are but we know that’s not always enough. Customers trust other customers and what they have to say. Our team work tirelessly to ensure everyone is happy but don’t take our word for it, check out what our existing customers are saying.

Check out the biggest reviewers of right now, on that well known website that sounds like 'rust ilot'...

Thanks to Mark at Travelbag
Thanks to Travelbag, absolutely fantastic customer service from Mark Hughes (after having had some terrible experiences with other travel companies). Mark Hughes is the go-to guy for your next holiday, best choice, price and payment options. This is the second time I have used Mark. Had great communication up to departure. In very uncertain times Mark was very proactive and helpful. He made the whole process very flexible with cancellation and rebooking options available. In the end we decided to accept the 2 week self isolation upon return and went ahead with the holiday to the Maldives. Glad we did, it was amazing, felt very safe during the whole period. Thanks Again!

Dubai Update

Dubai is now quarantine-free

It’s the news we’ve all been waiting for – Dubai is open! Travellers won’t need to quarantine when they arrive in Dubai, or when they return to the UK. So, if you’re craving some sunshine, why not start planning your post-lockdown getaway?

Take a look at our amazing Dubai offers for 2021.

What do you need to do before you travel?

  • A negative COVID-19 PCR test and certificate must be provided
  • No quarantine on return to the UK if on a direct flight
  • Screening procedures are in place upon arrival – just good for you to know to help keep everyone safe

Still got questions? Check out our FAQ’s page or call one of our friendly team who will be happy to answer any questions. Check out what our customers are saying who have recently visited Dubai.

David Foster - November 2020
Fantastic price and easy to book!

David Knapp - November 2020
Yet again another smooth and helpful booking, we have used Travelbag for years now as they always goes above and beyond to insure we get the most out of our travel experience 5stars from me.

Josh L - November 2020
We’ve booked with Travelbag three times in the past and always had brilliant service, the staff are extremely knowledgeable in the destinations they cover and always offer good insight and tips for your trip.

Jon McArthur - November 2020
Travelbag are excellent. I say this through the experience of booking 4 holidays through them, each needed piecing together with hotels, connecting flights, etc. and we simply know that Travelbag will provide and recommend the quality of hotel and travel that we are after.


Maldives Update

Here’s our Out There Made Easy travel guide

Don’t let lockdown get you down, when this is over the Maldives will still be open and ready for you. It will also be the perfect place to socially distance yourself from the rest of the world, just think, white beaches, private villas all in secluded luxury. Our experts on the ground are working with local agents to find out what else you need to do before travel, and here you go.

  • A negative COVID-19 PCR test and certificate must be provided – good news though, the Maldives have extended this for up 96 hours before you travel (Most standard times are 48 hours)
  • No quarantine on return to the UK if on a direct flight
  • Screening procedures are in place upon arrival – just good for you to know to help keep everyone safe
  • Multi-island trips are allowed, but check with us or your hotel before you plan to travel

Still got questions? Check out our FAQ’s page or call one of our friendly team who will be happy to answer any questions. Check out what our customers are saying who have recently visited the Maldives.

Ian Lenchner - October 2020
Would not hesitate in travelling to the Maldives again in the near future. The booking process was brilliantly easy, we felt fully prepared for our trip and very safe on the flight. The W Maldives took every precaution possible to make us feel safe and we thoroughly enjoyed our holiday.

Pete Hill - October 2020
All the help we received was informative and the service as expected was first class. There was nothing more that the resort could have done to make our stay any better and we look forward to going back soon.

The Maldives is now open and waiting for you, so get that suitcase ready.

Still want more? Check out what our customers are saying on Feefo.

More of a social person? Join our Friends of Travelbag facebook group, funnily enough on Facebook, and see what some of most loyal customers have got to say about us.

WHY BOOK WITH US?

Still unsure on whether to book with us? It’s ok, we understand you might be a little more reassurance before you join the Travelbag family. Here are a few more reasons for you to put your holiday in the hands of a holiday expert.

40 years in the making

Back in 1979 we were one of the first travel companies to offer long haul-tailor made holidays and pride ourselves in local knowledge while offering the best customer service. We are passionate about travel with our team of travel experts collectively visiting almost 95% of the world we offer the most unique, off the beaten track holidays. It’s one of the reasons we’re still the market leader in tailor-made holidays 40 years later.

Dnata family

We are part of the dnata Travel Group, a UAE based company who support our vision of making travel available for everyone. You can read more about them here.

ABTA & ATOL protected

We are proud members of the ABTA family, a trade association for tour operators and travel agents in the UK. ABTA provides travel advice, guidance, protection and help in resolving travel complaints. As well as this, we are ATOL protected. Air Travel Organisers licensing (ATOL) is a UK civil aviation authority scheme that gives financial protection to people who have purchased package holidays and flights from a member tour operator.

Comprehensive COVID-19 Pledge & flexible booking policy

When you book a holiday with us, you will be automatically covered by our comprehensive COVID pledge, this means if you are unable to travel due to COVID then your money is safe. Click here for full COVID Pledge details.

In addition, when you book with us you are covered by our flexible booking policy. This means reduced deposits of £100 per person and free amendments up to 45 days before you depart (should you need to).

By being part of the ABTA & ATOL family, it means your money is safe when you book a holiday with us.

What our customers are saying about booking with us

We can tell you how great we are but we know that’s not always enough. Customers trust other customers and what they have to say. Our team work tirelessly to ensure everyone is happy but don’t take our word for it, check out what our existing customers are saying.

Check out the biggest reviewers of right now, on that well known website that sounds like 'rust ilot'...

It's tough for everyone during these…
It's tough for everyone during these difficult times, but i feel compelled to write about the customer service that i received from Priscilla Soondrum. Absolute class, second to none. She is caring, reactive and absolutely understood my family's needs. She is now my go-to for any future holidays and i will definitely be recommending her. A lot of bad press surrounding travel companies at the minute, I'm just thankful i chose one that doesn't conform with the masses and even luckier to have found a consultant who is simply brilliant. The fact is my holiday still might not go ahead, we are at the mercy of the powers that be, but nonetheless, my experience with Travelbag and Priscilla has been great. I don't usually write reviews but Credit where credit is due. Thank you Priscilla.

Still want more? Check out what our customers are saying on Feefo.

More of a social person? Join our Friends of Travelbag facebook group, funnily enough on Facebook, and see what some of most loyal customers have got to say about us.

COVID Pledge

We know that planning a holiday can be challenging at the moment. That’s why we’ve introduced our COVID Pledge. If you or anyone in your party is unable to travel due to coronavirus, your trip – and your money – is protected*. And your booking is automatically covered, so you don’t need to lift a finger.

*Please note, you will be covered up to a maximum of £5,000 per person, as per the value shown on your first invoice/receipt from your original Travelbag booking. Cover is valid only for items and components as detailed on your first itinerary from Travelbag. Any components that are amended or rebooked at a later date are not covered. 

The COVID Pledge covers package holiday bookings only; it is not valid on flight-only bookings. Cover is valid for new bookings that were first booked on or since 1st January 2021. The cover cannot be added retrospectively to bookings made before this date. 

Please click here to see full terms and conditions.

 

Our Flexible booking policy explained

We know that plans change and our new flexible booking policy has been tailor-made for you, so that if plans change, then we can change with you. So what’s included in our policy? Here’s a breakdown of all the things we’ve now included when you book a holiday with us. Please make sure you read our terms and conditions as there might be some variations depending on the type of holiday you book with us.

  1. No amendment fees:If you are unsure about travelling or travel restrictions change, we will waive our amendment fee for FREE up to 45 days before you depart! Normally these would apply, but we know right now things might be out of your hands and we don’t want you to pay for this.
  2. Low deposits:We’ve reduced our deposits to as little as £100 per person per booking, meaning you can have peace of mind that your holiday is secure with us but you will still have a little more cash in your pocket.

 

Optional travel insurance

When you book a holiday with Travelbag, we give you the option of adding standard travel insurance to your booking, at an additional cost. This covers you for things such as…

  • Medical Expenses for Medical Emergency & Repatriation, including COVID-19 related expenses (up to £10,000,000)
  • Trip Cancellation & Curtailment (up to £5,000)
  • Personal Luggage(up to £2,000)
  • Personal Liability (up to £2,000,000)
  • 24hr emergency helpline in place should you need us.

This policy also covers you if your trip is affected due to COVID-19, such as cancellation and medical reasons.

A full breakdown of the policy can be found here.

 


GET INSPIRED

Need some ideas for where to go? Have a look below.

Out There Made Easy

Everyday our experts help people realise their dream holidays, designing experiences to last a lifetime, out there made easy.

Knowledge

Between them, our travel advisors can boast almost 800 years of holiday expertise.

Ease

Our tailor made packages make it easy for you to discover more of the world.

Value

Whether you're looking for luxury or simplicity, we've got the perfect holiday for you.

Trust

Travelbag is fully protected by ATOL and ABTA, so your booking is completely secure.

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