Welcome to the January edition of newsletter and Happy New Year to you. We are slightly late with the newsletter this month as we were waiting for some good news with regard to travel - which we got from Bojo this week. Details below. We are also taking a look at the latest travel advice and we have a brief preview of the NEC Motorhome Show, which is all set to go in a few weeks time.
Latest travel news
The good news is that there has been another relaxation on overseas travel rules. For the last few months there has been a requirement to test before re-entering the UK and then take a further PCR test on Day 2. The travel industry have been campaigning against this as it seems fairly pointless if the virus is already in the country. As I have said before, it's a bit like having a "no weeing" section in a swimming pool.
The latest changes mean that the only test required now on returning to the UK, is a Day 2 test, which can be an antigen test, rather than the more expensive PCR test. You can get a Day 2 antigen test for as little as £15 now and it can all be done via email. This is great news for travel as it means that the cost is not onerous and you eliminate that worry that you might test positive at the end of your holiday and have to hang around for a week before you can come home.
Another feature that has been reported more and more is the importance of booking a "package" holiday. A package holiday is any holiday that is made up of two more elements e.g. a ferry booking plus campsite bookings. Where you book a package you are protected by the Package Travel Regulations. We sell packages! This means that if we cancel the tour for any reason (including any existing or new variant of COVID), you are entitled to all of you money back. You do NOT get this protection where you book individual parts of the holiday yourself.
On top of that we offer our Covid Guarantee, which is an added level of protection. This means that you can opt to carry your tour over to another year if you don't want to travel due to Covid concerns. Therefore, if you choose not to travel this year, you don't lose your deposit. Full details are on our website.
NEC February Show
We are all set you go for the February Show, which will be the first one for two years. We know that sales of tickets is the highest it has been for years, with 40,000 tickets sold already. There is a real appetite for the show from the public.
The way the shows normally work is that there is the October one, which is the biggest where all the manufacturers bring their latest models. The Feb Show is usually a bit smaller with fewer brand new models on show. As October was cancelled, many of the manufacturers are actually using the Feb show to launch their new models.
As if that wasn't enough, we will be there too on Stand 4055 on Hall 4 and it would be great to see you. We know that lots of you have tours planned with us that you booked way back in 2019. It would be great to see you and catch up again.
Someone sent us this photo that was taken at one of the Italian motorhome shows. Although things have been difficult in the travel sector, we are not quite ready to downsize to it just yet.
Coq au Van (the amusingly titled recipe feature)
1onion, peeled and diced
1 clove of garlic, peeled and crushed
1 x 400g tin cherry tomatoes
70gpitted black olives
4 fish fillets, frozen or fresh
fresh basil, to finish
This works best in a shallow frying pan with a lid, although a large cast-iron casserole with a lid can also be used.
Sauté the onion and garlic together in a little olive oil for 8 to 10 minutes, until soft. Add the cherry tomatoes and black olives and bring to a very gentle simmer.
Top with the fish fillets and cover with the lid. Poach for 10 to 20 minutes (depending on the size of the fish and if it is fresh or frozen. It is done when opaque all the way through and flakes easily).
Serve hot, sprinkled with torn basil leaves.
This month's motorhoming tips are all about the motorway tags for France. This was prompted by a solo traveller friend of ours who travelled through France recently and was particularly keen NOT to hang out the passenger side window to manually grab a ticket.
The main advantage of a tag is that you can drive through any lane with a "t" displayed above it and the barrier will open automatically. Payment is linked to your bank account so no need for cash or cards at the toll booth. We have had one for a few years and would not be without one.
The tag itself is a small electronic device that sticks on your windscreen. A sensor picks up the tag as you drive to the barrier, you hear a re-assuring beep, the barrier lifts and you whizz through the toll booth leaving all the other poor suckers behind.
The downside is that there is a cost (but we think it's worth it). It costs 10 euros to get one, 5 euros per month (only in the months you use it), 8 euros a year ongoing and a 20 euro refundable deposit. The tolls are then charged at standard rate and you get an itemised bill via the website every month.
Get one from here: https://www.emovis-tag.co.uk/
Keep in touch
Please feel free to contact us at any time. When we are away, calls will bounce to our mobiles at no expense to yourself.