Travelling in the transition period from the COVID19 lockdown to new normal

Mari

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Well, I’ve followed protocol rising my nose with salted water etc.
In last ~36h I haven‘t eat anything that could trigger the test ( yesterday I had one sausage with buckwheat bread and later I ate one whole grilled fish) and I drank water without lemon so this citrus don’t trigger the test.
Today I haven’t eaten anything yet because my nerves are on overdrive.
I tested negative. Huh…

My man who did none of those things also tested negative. So, what to say… Maybe really these tests are a gamble…. 🤷🏻‍♀️

They‘ve put the stick less than I sticked it for my own self-test. I was surprised by that, I had all the monologue prepared and didn’t need it… maybe it is just up to the person who does the test in this test centers - has he or has he not have some sadistic tendencies…

Except for the draft I have in my head due to this nose rising (my nose is working on 110%), I feel totally emotionally exhausted.
…and we still have ~12h drive to do, starting in the night…

There are so many car crashes I see in the news that I‘m so happy to have traveling crystal for additional protection.

Thank you all for your suggestions and support!
 

Mari

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Thank you all for your good wishes! :hug2: We arrived safely. :-)

There was a huge traffic jam on DE-AU border due to border crossing control. Luckily, Google Maps tracks traffic and offers alternative routes, so we took alternative route (parallel to A8 highway) and avoided waiting on the border and cut off cca 1h from our trip. On alternative route there were no controls, no policemen, nothing. I was surprised to see not so many cars on that route, people probably use normal navigation and don´t see traffic jams.... But, also that traffic jam was reported on the radio so I still don´t get why would people drive straight in the traffic jam and not take alternative route...
Anyway, as we didn´t cross the border on the main point, I don´t know why there was traffic jam; does Austrian government check all incoming travelers or what... Last info I know is that if one comes from "green" country, you don´t need anything for either enter or stay in Austria or Slovenia.

On CRO border, we also took alternative route, not to get in the jam on the main highway and on the main entering point / border crossing, where were also traffic jams reported. But we anyway always take the alternative route because we don´t want to drive extra miles (it´s faster because one is on the highway, but is extra miles if we go around Zagreb, while taking more direct route saves miles but you can´t drive as fast on the village roads, so in the end it turns even enough overall time) and we don´t want to get stuck in traffic around Zagreb.
There were 3 cars in front of us and I was watching the car in front of us, their passports being scanned and that´s it.
When our term came, the policemen scanned our personal IDs and started with questions: Where do we live? Where do we go? Did we get the vaccine or the test? And we had to present our tests to his inspection.
Either we looked suspicious or they control only every other car or I don´t know why, but the car before us didn´t present any papers or anything apart from their passports - I was watching closely. They scanned passports and that was it...
Maybe they showed some confirmation on the phone that I didn´t notice, but except for scanning passports, policemen took no other papers from the people and I didn´t see him scan something in the car.
Digital covid passports are stored in CovApp on your phone (those are basically certificates which you get after vaccine or a test, and on certificate is a QR code, which you then scan with CovApp and store it in the App) and the police (or anyone else) should scan the QR-code in that App to check if the certificate is valid or not.
So, there was no additional scanning in the upfront car or additional paper checks....
🤷‍♀️
 

Mari

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Could someone from Germany please doublecheck the info I’ve got that as of 1.8. there will be mandatory tests for everybody entering Germany, even from green countries?

My colleague from Hungary told me that was on hungarian news but I have trouble finding it on some official site.

I see it was planned but I don’t see any decision being made.
Does anyone have more info on this?
Thank you!!!!
 

Mililea

Jedi Council Member
FOTCM Member
Could someone from Germany please doublecheck the info I’ve got that as of 1.8. there will be mandatory tests for everybody entering Germany, even from green countries?

My colleague from Hungary told me that was on hungarian news but I have trouble finding it on some official site.

I see it was planned but I don’t see any decision being made.
Does anyone have more info on this?
Thank you!!!!
Hello dear Mari, yes, it seems to be true. And there is also quarantine from countries that are considered risk areas... here is a link from the German ADAC.
 

Mari

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Hello dear Mari, yes, it seems to be true. And there is also quarantine from countries that are considered risk areas... here is a link from the German ADAC.
Thank you! So if one is comming from high infected countries must in quarantine no matter if they are vaccinated… :rolleyes:
People should be really angry…
So it seems that it remains jet to be seen if Croatia will be put to high infected countries or not - if I have to go to quarantine or only test will do.
 

Mililea

Jedi Council Member
FOTCM Member
Thank you! So if one is comming from high infected countries must in quarantine no matter if they are vaccinated… :rolleyes:
People should be really angry…
So it seems that it remains jet to be seen if Croatia will be put to high infected countries or not - if I have to go to quarantine or only test will do.
As I understand it, the difference is that if you are vaccinated, then you can "test free" from quarantine... :curse: not without vaccination. But these texts are written so confusingly that you no longer know what you read at the top. :cry:
 

thorbiorn

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) introduced a service that may be helpful for some. They explain:

Discover the Timatic Widget: Quick, easy and accurate COVID-19 passenger travel requirements​

25 June 2021 10:24:36 CET

No more wasting time surfing the web searching on government websites, losing sales to the competition or dealing with customer complaints.

Use the Timatic Widget and help your customers stay in control of their journey from planning to arrival.

DATA YOU CAN TRUST
When you use Timatic, you get information sourced from over 2,000 government and airline officials all over the world. Our team of experts verify conflicting reports and make updates only when we’re 100% sure they’re accurate.

No rumours. No social media. Just the facts.
Under the Timatic, link you find this page:
2021-09-01 215654.png
What I like it that one can add a transit country. Notice though, that this is for air travel. The administration of regulations may be slightly different for other means of transportation.
 

Laurs

Dagobah Resident
FOTCM Member
We just got back from a 3-day city trip by car to Seville, Spain from our village in the south of Portugal. They'd been threatening for a couple of weeks now to ramp up border controls, but, as we thought these were just empty threats, we decided to not take any covid tests and just go and see what would happen. Worst case, we figured, they would turn us back at the border crossing to get some tests. It turned out there were no controls whatsoever and we had a joyful family time in bustling Seville, seeing all the beautiful venues and sights without having to show any test results anywhere. It was raining cats and dogs lots of the time but we managed to have breakfast, lunch and dinner on terraces which had rain covers and heating, as all restaurants requested covid passes or negative tests for inside dining. You'd think there was no 'pandemic' raging in Seville but for the fact that almost everyone was wearing masks everywhere, especially out on the streets where quite a few police cars could be seen cruising about. Back in Portugal, where the vaxx rate is impossibly high (almost 90% count as fully vaxxed), we learn that Portugal is once again imposing a hard lockdown, seemingly aimed at destroying the hospitality sector for good. We were so fortunate to have had this precious trip with our girls!
 

SOTTREADER

The Living Force
Unvaccinated Brit here who decided to see what countries in the EU I could visit for a couple of days to get some direct winter sun and escape the grey skies of England which are relentless. Choices limited to the Mediterranean, and Cyprus seemed the most welcoming. Entry requirements equal to a lateral flow 24 hours before departure and a PCR at the airport upon arrival. UK is designated a "red" country so anyone from UK has to get this PCR test at the airport. The "operation" I have to say was quick, you get off the plane and queue out the airport building... inside is a team of 4 to 5 testers and a further team of 4 people to take payment. You pay, sit down, the testers are quick and off you go. Hours later you receive a text message informing you of your status. They have your details from the equivalent of the Cypriot passenger locator form that you must complete before departing your country of origin.

Anyways, here I was thinking that was that. So in going out to dinner, all appears normal. You enter, sit down, a menu is brought etc... all appears normal until the waitress asks for your "health pass" 😱

Not only the health pass but ID too. Wow!!! Is this life in the EU and Cyprus supposedly has lax covid restrictions!! I can only imagine what the unjabbed no-go zones of France etc are like. Anyways, luckily when I had Omicron in December I asked the NHS for a recovery certificate which I think is valid for 6 months. That seemed to calm the waitress down who had for a second turned into an agent of the state with the whole Gestapo "non human" look on her face whilst she was there waiting to see your papers. I told her in England we don't have to show our papers and she looked at me like "that can't be true" 😐. I liked the irony of asking for a health pass when all around were people drinking alcohol and you know, smoking (not that I have anything against it but the mainstream view is this isn't you know, healthy lol).

Anyways, I thought I was just unlucky so was observing to see if other diners were being asked and yes, this waitress was very diligent. I saw a family get caught out, I think Brits too. Like seriously, the only reason Brits are turning up is because the government here doesn't require you to isolate if unjabbed and the bloody restaurants are out here shooting themselves on the foot not knowing why tourists are choosing this country at this specific point in time. Anyways, that other Brit family played the ignorant card and in the end just had to show their IDs. What the hell is this obsession with IDs too??

Anyways, I think later in the year I'm going to try my luck with a country I've never visited but I hear freedom reigns supreme there - Mexico. We wait and see.
 
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SOTTREADER

The Living Force
Unvaccinated Brit here who decided to see what countries in the EU I could visit for a couple of days to get some direct winter sun and escape the grey skies of England which are relentless. Choices limited to the Mediterranean, and Cyprus seemed the most welcoming. Entry requirements equal to a lateral flow 24 hours before departure and a PCR at the airport upon arrival. UK is designated a "red" country so anyone from UK has to get this PCR test at the airport. The "operation" I have to say was quick, you get off the plane and queue out the airport building... inside is a team of 4 to 5 testers and a further team of 4 people to take payment. You pay, sit down, the testers are quick and off you go. Hours later you receive a text message informing you of your status. They have your details from the equivalent of the Cypriot passenger locator form that you must complete before departing your country of origin.

Anyways, here I was thinking that was that. So in going out to dinner, all appears normal. You enter, sit down, a menu is brought etc... all appears normal until the waitress asks for your "health pass" 😱

Not only the health pass but ID too. Wow!!! Is this life in the EU and Cyprus supposedly has lax covid restrictions!! I can only imagine what the unjabbed no-go zones of France etc are like. Anyways, luckily when I had Omicron in December I asked the NHS for a recovery certificate which I think is valid for 6 months. That seemed to calm the waitress down who had for a second turned into an agent of the state with the whole Gestapo "non human" look on her face whilst she was there waiting to see your papers. I told her in England we don't have to show our papers and she looked at me like "that can't be true" 😐. I liked the irony of asking for a health pass when all around were people drinking alcohol and you know, smoking (not that I have anything against it but the mainstream view is this isn't you know, healthy lol).

Anyways, I thought I was just unlucky so was observing to see if other diners were being asked and yes, this waitress was very diligent. I saw a family get caught out, I think Brits too. Like seriously, the only reason Brits are turning up is because the government here doesn't require you to isolate if unjabbed and the bloody restaurants are out here shooting themselves on the foot not knowing why tourists are choosing this country at this specific point in time. Anyways, that other Brit family played the ignorant card and in the end just had to show their IDs. What the hell is this obsession with IDs too??

Anyways, I think later in the year I'm going to try my luck with a country I've never visited but I hear freedom reigns supreme there - Mexico. We wait and see.
Things are way worse than I thought - you need to show the "Health pass" to even go into a supermarket 🤯

Like literally there's someone at the entrance who scans the QR Code.

Also we just did a light shop and it came to over 100 euros. Like Halloumi is more expensive here than in the UK. 🥴 What in God's planet... Not that I condone drinking but a bottle of beer or lager is like 1.50 euros the cheapest and like cider is up to 3 euros a bottle. Ariel washing machine tablets are an ASTOUNDING 10 Euros for a small packet. My flipping goodness. I'm developing a deep appreciation for England.... but our poor pound is like essentially equal to a euro now 😭😭
 
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Sybill

Jedi
Just came back from Hungary a couple of days ago. No more mask mandates. Traveling was fine with Easyjet. I have never seen so many people pretend to eat for two hours straight 😃. One guy fell asleep in front of me with crumbs around his mouth, and the cabin crew just ignored him. No problems in the airports. Overall no bother other than that darn passenger locator form. Silly me, I thought I can do it in the car quickly on the way to the airport. Sure. Two hours, holding my son's head with my right hand, trying to open the passports with my left hand, balancing the mobile on my knee, while we were driving the worst country lane ever to skip the traffic on the motorway.
 

thorbiorn

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
"The new normal" is influenced by the current rise in energy prices. Below are more notes on buying plane and train tickets in Europe. Though mostly for Western Europe, there are notes about Russia too.

Covid-19 policies in the EU
The EU has a page, see Re-open EU and mentioned earlier is the page by IATA: https://www.iatatravelcentre.com/world.php Here one finds an interactive map with notes, which include links to the latest information. If you click France on the IATA map, there is a link in the notes to Covid 19 : International travel, which also has a map.

Higher plane ticket prices
When I searched for plane tickets within Western Europe yesterday evening, I found the prices to be more expensive. Apart from the influence of the higher energy prices, why were the prices for my flight destination so much lower today than yesterday? Was it only because I looked at a different time of the day? Or was it because the cookies and their algorithm detected a pattern typical of a buyer who might drop the deal offered?

Travelling by train within Europe
In the process of looking up planes and busses, I also explored trains within Europe. Initially, I tried the pages of railway companies, like Deutsche Bahn: bahn.de - Verbindungen - Ihre Anfrage for Germany, and Ouigo.com : Billets de train à petit prix. Trains pas chers en France for France etc. There are some good deals here and there, but for going between countries, a dedicated page can be a better choice. For instance, https://www.raileurope.com/en, offers information and booking of tickets. Another web page, Eurail.com | 1 rail pass, 33 countries, allows you to search for special pass deals, so you can travel widely within a certain country or within a selection of countries. To these deals, there can be conditions attached, like being a student, or retired, or that the tickets can be used at certain times during the day, week or year.

Belarus, Russia, Ukraine
These three countries are not mentioned by the previous railway pages. To make matters worse, some possibilities and webpages are no longer available:
On Purchase Russian Train Tickets Online Safely and Securely I looked up Moscow-Paris, they said:
Due to the global health crisis, service on this train route has temporarily been suspended. Please check back at a later time for updates.
And this company Russian Trains | Book Russian Railways Tickets Online writes on their homepage:
Notice: In light of current situation, we no longer provide services inside of Russia.
Indeed!... And it turns out this page for the Belarus rails https://www.rw.by/ was not accessible, nor was this page Офіційний веб-сайт Укрзалізниці from Ukraine.

Travel information for Russia - try Yandex Travel. I don't know if one can purchase anything from countries supporting the sanction fever, but at least the Yandex page is functional and gives information for many destinations.
 
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