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GEM offers tips for safer holiday motoring in Europe this summer

GEM offers tips for safer holiday motoring in Europe this summer

Road safety and breakdown specialist GEM Motoring Assist is encouraging holidaymakers to ensure they do their homework before taking the car into mainland Europe this summer.

The Covid-19 pandemic lockdowns may be easing, but there are still restrictions and requirements which vary from country to country, according to GEM. That’s why it’s important to check:

the rules on travel put in place by the country in which you live (England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland each have their own regulations);

the specific rules put in place by the country or countries you plan to visit;

the Foreign and Commonwealth Office website for the most up-to-date information on 14-day quarantine requirements when returning from certain countries.

Returning from most European countries will not require a period of quarantine. The main exceptions are Portugal and Sweden, where a mandatory period of quarantine will be required on return to the UK.

Quarantine exemptions are by and large the same for people returning to England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland from most European countries. However, Scotland currently does not exempt travelers returning from Spain.

GEM chief executive Neil Worth commented: “Before deciding whether to take a holiday in Europe by car this summer, make sure you check details of what has reopened, what restrictions remain in place and what requirements there may be for wearing masks, maintaining social distancing and pre-booking accommodation.

“Please also ensure you have proper travel insurance in place and that you have checked exactly what cover you have. For example, most policies do not include cover for claims arising from, or relating to coronavirus.”

Ferry operators and Eurotunnel have put in place additional sanitation measures, which include hand sanitisers, more frequent cleaning of public areas and toilet facilities.

GEM’s tips for safer travel in Europe:

Check carefully on any restrictions and government advice relating to the country you are planning to visit.

Also check whether you need to quarantine on your return.

Make sure your car is properly serviced before you travel, thus minimising the risk of a breakdown while you are away.

Book as many components of your holiday as possible in advance. Restrictions on numbers mean you may not be able to turn up without a reservation for a ferry, a campsite, hotel or visitor attraction.

Be ready for reduced services and longer queues at ports, motorway service stations and on ferries.

Familiarise yourself with rules on mask wearing, as these can vary not only from country to country but also from town to town. Officials on some Spanish beaches will impose fines of £90 for people not wearing masks.

Make sure your travel insurance covers you if you need to cancel your trip, or if you become unwell while away.

If you become unwell – with Covid symptoms – while away, don’t ignore it. Check specific health advice, which usually involves staying indoors and arranging a test as quickly as possible.

Follow GEM on Twitter @MotoringAssist for the latest industry news.

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