So, I’m no travel blogger by any means but the lovely Britt-Marie aka The Holiday Fixer asked me to share my recent experience of travelling to Spain.
I was apprehensive. It was a girls getaway for a few days (I say girls – we’re all mums in our late 30s/early 40s) This trip had been booked over 18 months ago and was my first holiday without the kids in TEN YEARS. Originally there was five of us going but between covid vaccinations (or lack of) and PCR tests and rumours of having to self-isolate upon return, 3 dropped out leaving just the two of us.
I was on the fence, and to be honest couldn’t be bothered with all the ‘faff’ of covid passports, PCR tests, mask-wearing etc. However my travel companion, Katy, really REALLY wanted to go and so convinced me to say ‘yes’ and commit to five days in the sun.
Katy came round to mine 2 nights before we were due to fly (28th July 2021). We checked the rules for flying to Spain which was an amber country. Katy had produced a checklist of everything we needed to complete (I was very impressed!)
As we were both double vaccinated, things seemed relatively straightforward. We spent a couple of hours in front of the laptop, wine in hand and got sorting.
Here’s the checklist:
1. Covid Passport:
- Download NHS app
- Input NHS number
- Wait 24hrs
- Print off covid passport
2. Complete a Spanish vaccination declaration and print off (this is for the Spanish authorities)
3. Book a day 2 PCR test for return. This is government regulation. We booked ours via Randox for around £40 (I think some airlines are offering discount codes)
4. Complete a passenger locator form (you need to include the Randox reference number to confirm you have booked your day 2 return test)
Day of travel
We had an early morning flight, the airport wasn’t overly busy despite all the horror stories you see in the press. We got through check-in and security with no problems after showing our various paperwork and even had time to grab some breakfast and do a bit of shopping.
Ola Espanola! We’ve arrived, again, got through passport control no problem, showed our paperwork and we were on our way to our hotel.
We stayed at the gorgeous Hotel Melia Villaitana in Benidorm. Five days of relaxing by one of the numerous pools, sipping on pina coladas – absolute bliss!
Time to be honest…
The one thing that did cause me a little anxiety was getting a PCR test within 24 hours before flying back to the UK.
Our hotel reception were super helpful and provided us with details of the private hospital where we had to get our test. We made an appointment for the evening of our last night.
A short taxi ride to the hospital, a payment of 34 euros and the test was done and we received our results (negative!) within 20 minutes via email.
And now I’m back on UK soil, after having an amazing holiday, I ask myself was the ‘faff’ worth it?… Absolutely and actually it wasn’t as much ‘faff’ as I thought!
It was so good to be able to relax, soak up some sun, drink some cocktails and eat my body weight in paella. I’m sooo glad I decided to go and not let this pandemic ruin it.
The kids were fine with ‘Daddy day care’ and I feel super refreshed and recharged. The only question now is…where to next?