Can I still travel this Summer? Answers to some of your biggest travel questions

Can I still travel this Summer? Answers to some of your biggest travel questions

The information provided is current and correct at the time of this publication.

Alaska – Like many other states, Alaska is beginning to ease some restrictions that have kept tourists away. On Saturday, June 13th, the state began allowing travelers to enter the state without undergoing a mandatory 14-day quarantine, however, visitors still needed to show proof they are free of COVID-19. Due to the restrictions, most of the major cruise lines have suspended all 2020 Alaska cruises. It also didn’t help when Canada banned all cruise ships until October 31st.

Hawaii – The Governor just extended the 14-day quarantine to the end of July. With some of the lowest cases of COVID-19, the Governor plans on keeping those statistics down.

Las Vegas – Need to get away for a few days? See if your favorite hotel is listed in the first round of reopening: Bellagio, Caesars Palace, The Cosmopolitan, The D, Downtown Grand, Excalibur, Flamingo, Golden Nugget, Harrah’s, The LINQ, M Resort, MGM Grand, New York, New York, The Plaza, Station Casinos, Treasure Island, The Venetian, The Westin, Wynn/Encore, Paris, Westgate, Luxor, Aria, Mandalay Bay, OYO.

Cruises – 97% of our cancelled cruises have rebooked for next year. While those with cruise reservations set for October, November and December, are just waiting to see what happens. Most are very encouraged about the possibility of actually sailing this year. Or waiting until the cruise lines sends out a notice of cancellation, so they can be offered a future cruise credit of up to 150% of what they paid, and can be applied towards a future cruise. As for all cruise lines, most of the major ones do have a launch date for sailing by October 1st. Will this happen? There’s a 50/50 chance, so yes and no. So far, most of them have been pushing out their launch date farther out as the launch date approaches. Since this is such a fluid situation – this can change at any time.

Disney – Disney Parks, announced proposed plans for a phased reopening of the Disneyland Resort. Pending state and local government approvals, Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa and Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel plans to reopen on July 23, and Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park will plan to reopen on July 17.  Additionally, Downtown Disney District will begin reopening on July 9th.  Walt Disney World theme parks will open beginning July 11 for Magic Kingdom Park and Disney’s Animal Kingdom, followed by EPCOT and Disney’s Hollywood Studios on July 15.

Passport Renewals – The US State Department did a pretty quick turnaround for new and renewing passports before the pandemic. Usually getting passport back within 2-3 weeks versus the standard 4-6 weeks. They suspended the passport applications for a time and were only processing emergency passports and processing case-by-case as needed. As it enters Phase 1, June 1, they will resume routine passport operations at eleven passport agencies and centers.

TSA – Going through TSA, passengers should take extra care to ensure that they do not have liquids, gel or aerosols in quantities greater than 3.4 oz, in their carry-on bags. But in response to COVID-19, TSA is allowing one liquid hand sanitizer container, up to 12 ounces per passenger, in carry-on bags only.

Airlines – In the beginning, airlines cancel and refund policies were not fun to deal with as it changed on a daily basis and it was pretty crazy to try and keep up. It took a while, but they relaxed the rules a bit to allow for waivers. The waivers helped with eliminating the cancel or exchange fees, if you were able to get one. Again, this is a fluid situation and their cancel, change and refund policies keep changing. Those that have traveled to nearby states report middle seats are blocked, flight attendants with masks on, and no food served on board.

We appreciate your continued support of small businesses like ours. Please know our commitment to providing the best vacations will never waver, nor will our commitment to you, our valued Travelers. Joyce Bates is the owner of Sun Connections Travel & Cruises, the ‘go to’ travel agency for all occasions. For more information on this subject or to book your next trip, visit www.sunconnections.com or call 503-655-4850. *Travel Layaway plans available! *