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The Buckingham School

The Buckingham School

International Trips and Visits - Letter dated 11 February 2021

Following a meeting with one of our tour operators last week, I am writing to inform you of the current situation regarding our planned overseas trips and what we are planning to do.

The Government’s current advice for UK citizens is:

“Under current UK COVID-19 restrictions, you must stay at home. You must not travel, including abroad, unless you have a legally permitted reason to do so. It is illegal to travel abroad for holidays and other leisure purposes.” 

The Government’s wording puts the onus on the traveller and not the tour operators and travel companies. For this reason, the tour operators will continue to act as though the tours are going ahead. This would change if travel restrictions to certain countries were put in place that covered the dates of our trips, or if the Government introduced a blanket travel-ban.  

At present, the travel companies are monitoring the situation regarding the countries that our trips are due to travel to. If, five days before the trip departure date, there are travel restrictions in place, the tour operator will issue us with a full refund. At the moment, these are due to be reviewed later in February and March. 

If there are no travel restrictions in place, but the Government advises against residential trips, we will rely on our own insurance providers to reimburse any money owed. If we were to decide to cancel the trips now, we would be liable to pay up to 75% of the full cost of the trip. If we wait and follow the process, we will be able to secure full refunds.  

Our aim is to ensure that our families and school do not suffer financial losses as a result of a cancelled trip and we continue to work with the tour operators to ensure that we are clearly informed about our possibilities. As you can see, there are several different scenarios and many of them need us to wait until nearer the time of departure before we act. 

We will continue to monitor the situation and inform you of any developments that may occur. 

Yours faithfully 

Mr D Fox, Deputy Headteacher