Posted on 21st June 2021 Blog Covid-19 News
We sadly continue to see the impacts of Covid-19 on summer 2021, and following recent delays, announcements and consumer confidence falling within the travel industry we have been communicating once again with our booked guests regarding their plans and thoughts.
Unfortunately the continuing difficulties, and lack of clear governmental communication regarding international travel have been having a significant effect on people’s confidence and willingness to travel. Currently many European governments state that travel must be for essential travel only – and the UK government itself continues to make consumers feel that they should not travel for tourism, and have made some very odd judgements with which nations should be on the “Green List”. Many countries with very similar or better statistics than the UK are not on the green list – which creates question marks over whether the list will be expanded, the validity of personal insurances if people travel for tourism purposes and how to plan a trip when announcements are so last-moment.
Once you factor in the above with the continuing cancellation of flights by many airlines it is very easy to see why confidence in ability to travel abroad this year is very low- despite our excellent vaccination programme.
Therefore, as mentioned, we have now communicated with all of our guests who are booked to visit prior to September to discuss their thoughts, worries and preferences for the summer ahead.
It’s a devastating situation to once again find oursleves in, but we can absolutely understand why so many people are not wanting to leave international travel plans in place during such a period of indecision and uncertainty – and, as always we have worked very hard with the many, many guests who we had booked in during June, July and August to ensure that we offered solutions to suit them. As a result, all of our guests in June and July have now postponed their trips to late summer, or to 2022. This is, of course, the very last situation we wished to find oursleves in once again – I personally have not had any income since the end of 2019 due to the pandemic, and to say that times continue to be tough is an enormous understatement…
We have also been speaking with our guests for August, and that month too is now almost fully deferred – we have a few loose ends to tie up, but at this stage it is clear that we will not be operating in June, July or August as a result. However, we still have strong hopes that before September travel will have fully recommenced – and we fully intend to operate as normal during that period. We believe that by late summer it is likely that the various governments will all have agreed travel systems, increased vaccination levels will have had an impact, and new attitudes to fully-vaccinated travellers will allow for fewer travel-related testing/quarantining requirements.
We still have a handful of spaces available for September – which is very full – but at the time of writing we can accomodate 11 more riders across the September weeks – and we are keeping the 28th August available for now too! If there is demand for it at a later stage we may also look at extending into October slightly , as the weather is still fantastic early in the month.
In the meantime many of our guests have expressed an interest in our UK-based guiding, so we have reintroduced our Snowdonia-based North Wales trips, on a guiding-only basis. We ran the first of these two weeks ago, and interest is high! We live in North Wales, and have been riding here for decades (our first ever STS guided guests came here back in 2010) – and as a result we know all of the local secrets, the best of the wild mountain routes and lots of hidden riding just away from the trail centres which you’d never discover alone…details are all on our website right here – prepare to ride some amazing singletrack without leaving the country! And yes, you can transfer onto this from an Andorra trip if you prefer!
On a final note, I would personally like to thank all of our wonderful guests from around the World for their continued support through these difficult times – the friendship and compassion we have experienced has been absolutely incredible, and has made this dreadful year so much more bearable as a result.
Thank you all for standing by us, and we will see you on the trails in the near future.
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