Our People
  • Amy Waters snow biking Our Team

    Steppes Travel is made by the people who work here. Incredible holidays are made possible because of their vast travel experience and the great enthusiasm they bring to their work.

  • William Dalrymple Our Tour Experts

    We carefully select our experts based on their knowledge, companionship and influence, ensuring that you can travel with the most knowledgeable leaders in the field.

  • Liz Bonnin Heroes and Heroines

    The people who lead the way when it comes to those things which matter to us: exploration, the environment, women’s empowerment and education.

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Useful Information

Getting down to the details. Read on and see that we have everything covered.

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FAQs – Covid Travel Traffic Light System

The traffic light system is being retired at 4 am Monday 4 October 2021 and is moving to a two-tiered system. In its place will remain a single red list of countries and reduced restrictions to elsewhere in the world. If planning to travel after October 4th please see this page.

Below you will find a table of the current requirements when travelling aboard, please give us a call so we can talk you through the specific requirements of the country to which you wish to travel.

Traffic Light System Table

MeasureGreenAmberRed
Passenger Locator FormYesYesYes
Pre-departure test before arriving in the UKYesYesYes
Quarantine Managed at HotelNoNoYes
Self IsolationNo10 days or No isolation if double vaccinated10 days
Test to releaseNoYes on day five / N/A if vaccinatedNo
PCR TestingBefore or on day 2 since arrival in the UKBefore or on day 2 since arrival in the UKBefore or on day 2 since arrival in the UK
Additional PCR TestingNoOn day eightOn day eight

 

What about individual destination entry requirements?

The measures above are only those introduced by the UK government. Each country has their own border controls and additional measures that you need to comply with to enter. Please take a look at the government pre-travel checklist before you start planning your next trip.


How do I prove my Covid vaccine status?

You can demonstrate your COVID vaccination status via the NHS app. We suggest you download the NHS app in readiness for your next trip and check that your status is up to date. The NHS app will be accepted as proof of status by most countries around the world and is due to be integrated into the EU’s Covid Passport scheme.


What does ‘fully vaccinated’ mean?

This means you should have had two government recognised jabs, administered in the UK, no less than 14 days prior to your commencement of travel.


What if I have had a vaccine that is not recognised by the EU (or the country I am visiting)?

The EU recognises all of the jabs given in the UK however different names are sometimes used:

  • Pfizer-BioNTech is known as Comirnaty
  • Oxford-AstraZeneca (AZ) is known as Vaxzevria
  • Moderna is known as Spikevax
  • Janssen (sometimes referred to as the Johnson & Johnson vaccine) is the same as in the UK

You may have heard that the EU does not recognise a version of the AstraZeneca vaccine called Covishield, produced by the Serum Institute of India, because it is yet to receive approval in Europe. Up to 5M doses of this vaccine have been administered in the UK and are identifiable by the batch numbers included on the NHS app (4120Z001, 4120Z002, 4120Z003). We can check this for you and in most cases, you can still enter the country you plan to visit but will need to provide proof of a negative PCR test result.


Returning to the UK

To get back into the UK you will need to complete a Passenger Locator Form, 48 hours before your arrival. In addition, you will need to provide a negative result from a private COVID test taken in your holiday destination before returning home – see this government guidance for more details. On your return to the UK, on or before day two of your arrival, you will need to have taken a private PCR test. Details of this PCR test will need to be provided on the Passenger Locator Form, so it is important that you get this test booked before you depart the UK. You may wish to organise this through a provider that Steppes has been in discussion with, CHB Medical – https://www.chbmedical.co.uk/ – use the code ‘Steppes10’ to receive a 10% discount on the cost of the services provided.


What about children?

Children under the age of 18 will not have to isolate when returning to England. Children aged 4 and under are exempt from any travel testing. Children aged 5-10 will only need to do a day 2 PCR test on return from either a green or amber country, while 11-18-year-olds will need to take both a pre-departure test and a day 2 PCR test on return from either a green or amber country.


What if the country I am due to travel to is green?

If you are due to travel to a country on the green list then – provided your destination is open for international travel and we can fulfil the services you have booked – your booking should continue as normal.

Should you choose not to want to travel, cancellation charges would apply as per our booking conditions.


What if the country I am due to travel to is amber?

If you are due to travel to a country on the amber list then – provided your destination is open for international travel and we can fulfil the services you have booked – your booking should continue as normal.

Should you choose not to want to travel, cancellation charges would apply as per our booking conditions.


What if the country I am due to travel to is red?

If you are due to travel to a country on the red list and your departure date is imminent and you do not wish to travel, then you are entitled to a full refund or postpone your booking to a later date. If your departure date is more than a few months away, we will call you to discuss what is best to do.

If you are still happy to travel, then – provided your destination is open for international travel and we can fulfil the services you have booked – you are of course entitled to do so.


What happens if the country I am due to travel to changes from green to amber?

It does not make much difference from a legal perspective. Provided your destination is open for international travel and we can fulfil the services you have booked, your holiday should continue as normal.

Should you choose not to want to travel, cancellation charges would apply as per our booking conditions.


What happens if the country I am due to travel to changes from amber to red?

If your departure date is imminent then you can choose to cancel and receive a full refund or postpone to a later date. As above, you can still choose to travel should you wish to. If your departure date is more than a few months away, we will call you to discuss what best to do.

Why Choose Steppes?

Our knowledge and expertise set us apart. So too our curiosity. It is this that drives us to create a journey that is really bespoke to you, all the while ensuring we travel and operate sustainably.

Are you ready to discover extraordinary once again?


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