Hiking in Zion National Park, Utah. April 2015.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Galetta (Ottawa), Ontario.

Where are they going next? We have flights booked to London, England in October.

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

If you want to travel internationally these days, you had better be prepared to be flexible with your plans

Our original Westjet flight booking was Ottawa to London's Gatwick airport with a connection through Halifax, Nova Scotia. That got changed a few weeks ago with a connection in Toronto instead, and of course different flight times.

We had also booked an onward flight with easyJet from London to Berlin that departed three hours after we landed in London.

But yesterday, I received another flight change from Westjet, this time detailing the fact that we are now departing a full day ahead of our original flight.

It's not ideal, to be sure.

But, the only option is to cancel and have the money get put back in our Westjet "travel bank". So really, there is no viable option.

It would be fine, except easyJet's flight to Berlin that day departs before we actually land, so we have to keep the flight booked that we already have. That will mean spending more than 24 hours in the Gatwick airport terminal. But, we've done long terminal stays before, so if it comes down to that, we'll just do it.

Maybe we'll finally get a chance to use the free airport lounge passes that were included with our credit card! I haven't checked to see if the lounges are even open.

Ottawa to Toronto to London to Berlin.

The other option would be to fly somewhere else in Europe and lose the funds from the non refundable easyJet flight. We can make free changes within 14 days of the flight, but after that it's locked in and you lose if you cancel. The flights were dirt cheap to begin with, so it wouldn't be a disaster if we did actually get new flights out of London.

Then of course, we only plan to spend a couple of weeks or so in Germany. It kind of depends on the weather, but the plan is to go somewhere warmer. We're thinking maybe a month in Greece or Albania then a month in Turkey, then a month in Ghana. So we might just do some country hopping this winter before going back to Germany at the end of March to pick up our motorhome.

So now, we are departing Ottawa on Sunday October 11th. But I wouldn't be surprised at all if that gets changed again!

It's a good thing we are happy to roll with the punches when it comes to travel. If you are a high maintenance traveler, now is not a good time to be expecting things to go smoothly on an international trip!

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Home Schooling Games and Toys

And in Canada...

Blink Outdoor Security Camera


16 comments:

  1. How will you be traveling until your new rig is ready?

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    1. The same way we have traveled in the past when we visit other countries, we will use AirBnb the majority of the time and travel around by public transportation unless we can rent a car at a reasonable rate.

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  2. Hi there - Just check you can spend 24 hours at Gatwick. My daughter tried to stay the night on the floor a couple of years ago waiting for a connection and was forced to leave and get a hotel room. Double check.

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    1. We have just checked several different websites and we haven't seen anything in them that says you can't spend the night at Gatwick. Plus things can be totally different because of COVID-19. We will take our chances but thanks for the warning.

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  3. WOW, good to be flexible for sure!!!!

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    1. We expected that there would be changes to our flights and we wouldn't be surprised to see more changes before we actually leave, so yes being flexible is a good thing. :-)

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  4. If an airline flies out of the US and cancels a flight they are required to give a refund. I am not sure if easyjet flies to the US.

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    1. Our first flight from Ottawa, Canada to London, England is on WestJet a Canadian airline company and our rules in Canada are different from the U.S. and unfortunately they do not give a refund but instead let you cancel or change your flight at no charge. However if you cancel your flight the money goes into a WestJet "travel bank" for you to use at another time for up to two years from the date of cancellation. As for EasyJet it is a British discount airline company that operates within Europe and again they do not refund your money but will allow you to make changes to your flight up to two weeks before your flight at no charge.

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  5. I'm wondering what you're planning to use for wi-fi and cell connections for this extended stay in Europe? Will you buy an 'international' plan in Canada? Please let me know, I'd appreciate it!

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    1. Canada has the most expensive cellular in the world, so no... we have no intention of having anything to do with a Canadian cellular provider. Prices vary a lot in Europe, and normally when we are there we pick up a pay as you go SIM card in the country we are visiting. However I have read that you can buy a British SIM card for a reasonable price that will work all over Europe. I haven't done enough research yet.

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    2. Thank you! It would be nice to keep us posted on that issue while you travel in Europe! I’m curious! In Mexico, I thought you had a Canadian cell connexion. I was probably wrong!

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    3. In Mexico we have always used a Telcel SIM card in our phone. The last time we had a Canadian SIM card in our phone was probably about 5 or 6 years ago and it was a pay as you go one that we didn't use very much at all. Even now we are still using our Mexico SIM card for data/phone/text.

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  6. You may mean 'Three' who have cell and data sims (for mifi). Jason and Julie are the local experts on this.

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    1. Yes, and I was going to check with them on the different options.

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  7. I saw this article yesterday of new rules in various European countries. They believe a second wave is starting as casersa re rising rapidly in many European counries right now You may find it useful. https://www.bbc.com/news/explainers-53640249

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    1. Thanks for the link although it will get old very quickly as things change every day. We are keeping our eyes open to everything that is happening over there so that we aren't in for any surprises.

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