Worldwide Summer Vacation Options 2021

Published 2021-07-02 08:22:02

The summer season is upon us and vaccination rollout is almost at full swing in most countries. People are eagerly looking at making summer vacation plans to slowly emerge from the pandemic isolation and into the "new" normal. Social media is calling it the "summer of revenge travel" where people are frantically trying to make up for lost time during the enforced lockdowns.

The travel industry is open for business with many hotels and airlines offering incentives to kickstart their business. Highly affordable flights and accommodation is encouraging people to go on that trip they only dreamed about during those long, difficult months of lockdown.

However, when making travel plans, remember that the list of likely holiday destinations could change at very short notice due to the ever-changing pandemic.

Summer Trends

So far this year, according to Airbnb:

  • Family travel has increased from pre-Covid years globally by 6%.
  • In the US, accommodation bookings have increased by 4%, particularly rural bookings near state and national parks.
  • Bookings in rural areas have also increased by 10% in other countries, like Canada, France, UK and Australia.
  • Previously, popular destinations included big cities like Paris, London and Seoul but latest trends showed rural areas, like Cornwall in the UK, surpassing the popularity of vibey London.
  • City bookings have been recovering too, with London, Montreal, Barcelona seeing more bookings and with longer-than-previous stays.

Other travel reports cite a considerable increase in the average holiday budget. People seem eager to spend more money on their holidays-- by either increasing the duration of their stays and/or choosing more luxurious accommodation. They are choosing local destinations and looking at alternative transport like trains rather than flights.

Statistics, according to online travel platform Tripadvisor, show:

  • Travellers who are vaccinated are more likely to consider summer holiday plans. 32% of vaccinated travellers surveyed globally said they would vacation domestically and 80% said that those plans depended largely on their vaccination status, compared to 19% of unvaccinated people who are making summer plans. 
  • 35% of vaccinated travellers are going on longer holidays and increasing their holiday budgets compared with 20% of unvaccinated people.

Some destinations

We have listed below conditions applicable on some exciting destinations for you to plan your own dream "summer revenge" holiday:

Middle East

  • Jordan: all tourists require a negative PCR test that is not older than five days (120 hours) at the time of travel. Travellers will also have to take another PCR test when they arrive in the country. This second test inJordan must be paid before you travel to Jordan at a cost of USD 39.49. A health form will also have to be filled in before travelling. If both PCR tests are negative, passengers will not have to quarantine.
  • Dubai: if you have a valid visa to enter Dubai, you must show a printed negative PCR test result that is not older than 72 hours prior to travelling. Travellers from certain listed countries require a negative test not older than 48 hours. A second PCR test may be required on arrival if you're travelling from certain listed countries. Download the mandatory app on your smartphone. A positive PCR will require a 10-day isolation. All local precautionary rules have to be strictly followed.
  • Bahrain: quarantine-free travel is only available in Bahrain to those fully-vaccinated travellers from certain countries, like Greece, Israel, Cyprus and the GCC. These passengers have to provide an official document proving their vaccination status.
    Passengers from other countries like the US, UK, Japan, Australia and New Zealand have to be fully vaccinated but require a PCR test on arrival to Bahrain (cost of PCR test is USD 95.74). They should quarantine until the results are ready. Even with a negative PCR result on arrival they have to repeat a PCR on day 10 of their stay in Bahrain. The PCR tests have to be prepaid using the official BeAware Bahrain App.
    All other travellers that are unvaccinated or from other countries require a mandatory 10-day quarantine at a government-approved location. 2 PCR tests have to be prepaid-- one on arrival and another 10 days later.  Children are not required to do the PCR tests.

Indian Ocean Island Getaways

  • Maldives: Picturesque and tranquil Maldives was one of the first holiday destinations to open up for holiday makers during the pandemic. Requirements are: a negative PCR test not older than 96 hours at the time of travel and a completed health form.  
  • Seychelles: All travellers are required to show a negative PCR test that is not older than 3 days and complete a mandatory health form. Although travellers are permitted freedom of movement on the island, they have to adhere to the Covid-19 public health measures of the country.
  • Sri Lanka: Holidaymakers can only stay at government pre-approved hotels for at least the first two weeks of their stay. These specified hotels are called Level 1 Safe and Secure hotels. Booking confirmation at one of these hotels, prepaid PCR tests and insurance cover--specifically for Covid-19 have to be presented when applying for a visa. The cost of a visa for 30 days is USD 35 and the application can be completed on

The number of prepaid PCR tests depends on the duration of stay--  a short stay less than five days requires one test. A stay longer than five days requires two tests. The cost of the PCR test is USD 40, and the mandatory insurance will set you back USD 12 but it covers all Covid-19 related health issues up to USD 50K for 30 days.

The first negative PCR test should not be older than three days prior to travel and be presented at check-in together with the health form. The second PCR test is done when you check-in at the pre-approved hotel. A third test is required one to two days before you depart if your stay is shorter than 10 days (a visit shorter than five days requires no third test). If you're staying longer than 10 days, your third test will be after day 11 but before day 14.


  • Greece: holiday makers have to be vaccinated and have a negative PCR test that is not older than three days at the time of departure. All travellers must fill in the mandatory passenger locator form after departure and follow all local public health measures, which include curfews and restricted travel between certain areas.
  • Cyprus: A traffic light system determines how many PCR tests are required depending on the country you're travelling from and whether you're vaccinated or not. Travellers from green countries require no PCR tests, those from amber countries require a negative PCR test not older than 3 days of travel and red countries require the mandatory negative test result before travel (not older than three days) and a second PCR test on arrival at their own expense. Everyone must complete a Cyprus Flight Pass.  All travellers to Cyprus are required to register and provide all required information before they depart to Cyprus.
  • Croatia: All travellers are welcome in Croatia, even if you are not an EU citizen. Those tourists from outside the EU must have a negative PCR result that is not older than 2 days (48 hours) at the time of arrival in Croatia. Additionally, travellers have to show proof of accommodation.
  • Spain: In addition to EU tourists, Spain welcomes only non-EU tourists that have been fully vaccinated. Vaccination proof which is an official document in English/Spanish has to be provided. The vaccination received must be authorised by the European Medicines Agency or by the World Health Organisation (for emergency use). Family members who are underage and unvaccinated will need to provide a negative PCR test.


  • South Africa: All tourists to South Africa require a negative PCR test that is not older than 3 days (72 hours) at the time of travel. Passengers will undergo health screenings on arrival. They are required to download the official contact tracing app for the duration of their stay. It should be noted that South Africa is on the red list for many countries and popular airlines, like Emirates, have suspended their flights from Dubai to the three South African international airports.
  • Morocco: Tourists require a negative PCR test that is not older than 3 days (72 hours) and a completed passenger health form. All travellers are expected to follow local precautionary health measures, such as wearing masks and physical distancing.
  • Tanzania: Tanzania has some fairly relaxed Covid restrictions for travellers. All tourists have to complete a Traveller Surveillance Form before arrival together with a negative PCR test that is not older than 3 days (72 hours). Further testing is performed at arrival at their own cost of USD25.

Pacific Ocean Islands Getaways

  • Bahamas: All travellers must have a negative PCR test on arrival that is not older than 5 days. You must apply for a health visa within 48 hours of travel before departure. The cost of the visa includes Covid insurance cover and rapid antigen testing for those visitors staying five days or more. The cost of the health visa ranges from USD 40-80 depending on the duration of stay.  
  • Barbados: Countries worldwide are categorised into low, medium and high risk and requirements for travellers vary according to where they are travelling from. Travellers from high-risk countries require a negative PCR test not older than 3 days (72 hours) and a completed customs and immigration form before you travel. These would be uploaded before travel. These tourists require confirmed booking at pre-approved accommodation where further PCR testing will be required on day after arrival. Travellers will quarantine in the pre-approved accommodation until the second PCR test is returned and negative, after which they have freedom of movement.    
  • Costa Rica: tourists require a completed digital health pass within 48 hours before travel and show that they have adequate health travel insurance in case of Covid infection.

[Source for destinations: ITP Media]

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Author: KashGo
Expat Mum in the Desert...

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