With a roadmap to freedom now set out for much of the country, providers are raring to get us going again. But travelling further afield could look markedly different to pre-pandemic times.

Not long ago, the concept of hotel quarantine was about to become a reality for thousands of travellers returning to the UK from destinations that ranged from Portugal to Panama.

And while that expensive conclusion to a trip is still very much a possibility for those who need to travel during lockdown, holidays are back on the horizon.

We’re not quite there yet, but with a roadmap out of lockdown now set out for much of the country, travel providers are raring to get us going again.

Even prior to the pandemic, travelling to the other side of the world was likely to be the trip of a lifetime – having flown over the vast, red outback, I’m eager to touch down in Australia again. But when?

One month ago, Australia’s Department of Health Secretary Brendan Murphy said that “we’ll go most of this year with still substantial border restrictions.”

The nation’s borders have been closed to all but citizens and permanent residents for almost a year – and they must return to compulsory hotel quarantine. However, this week Prime Minister Scott Morrison hinted that a successful vaccination programme could help reopen borders earlier. A lot can happen in a few weeks.

The long-haul landscape could look markedly different to pre-pandemic times when it restarts. Flights could be pricier, tour operators fewer. Which puts trips in sharper focus – perhaps you’ll stay longer, maximising bilateral value. If anything we now realise the privilege of travel. David Whitley, author of the final instalment of our Trips of a Lifetime series and founder of holiday advice website australiatravelquestions.com, highlights the benefits.

He has been writing about Australia for two decades – either living there or visiting twice a year. In those 20 years, he has tried to use a different stopover on the way Down Under each time, exploring Asia and the Pacific.

His top recommendation from these 25 trips is swimming with whale sharks on the Ningaloo Reef. “When I did it, two whale sharks were circling each other in front of me. The water was astonishingly clear, and I’ve never felt so privileged.”

(Story source: Inews)

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