Travelling in a Covid World

Cruise Express

Australian owned and operated

Travelling in a COVID World

Written by Managing Director of Cruise Express, Meg Hill
April 2022

There is a lot to know before you go!

What you need to know and do varies greatly based on the destination, airline and what you’re doing when you get there.

Rules and regulations are changing all the time

An agent can help navigate through the endless websites, watch for updates, assist to complete online forms, and simplify the process and any stress involved in pre-departure plans.

What you’ll need (as of April 2022)

  • At a minimum – to be at least double vaccinated (booster preferable if you qualify) or have an official medical exemption/Dr clearance letter if you have tested positive previously.
  • Create and download a physical copy of the international version of either of the above documents. 
  • An International Vaccination Certificate is downloaded from your Medicare app.
  • IMPORTANT: If you’ve had Covid in the 6-8 weeks prior to your departure, you need to obtain a Certificate of Recovery from your GP. Depending on destination and mode of travel on arrival (in our case cruising in Portugal), a negative PCR test result was taken within the past 72 hours.

Our experience

  • Pre-booked apps with Histopath $79 per person
  • SMS to confirm
  • On arrival proceed for test before checking in
  • At SYD a large tent/marquee is located outside the Departures Hall
  • Open early till late (check hours)
  • No waiting
  • Show passport and answer ID questions
  • Test of mouth, throat and nose
  • Less than 5 min
  • Results expected in 1.5 hours, by SMS
  • Can return for a printed copy
  • Our results arrived in approximately 30 minutes via SMS
  • Written copy approximately 5 minutes.

 

Proceeded to the airline check-in

  • Staff screening guests prior to joining check-in lines
  • Key questions – vaccination status and end destination
  • Depending on this, other paperwork may be required
  • In our case, completion of an online ‘Entry to Portugal’ form confirming our arrival and stay details (flight and seat numbers*, departure and arrival ports, address on arrival) plus home address and an emergency contact
  • Check-in, immigration and security processes are unchanged

*complete after airline online check-in!

The Terminal 

  • Was very quiet, with many shops, eating outlets as far bars closed (sadly permanently in some cases)
  • Masks required unless eating/drinking
  • Witnesses a police officer hand out a mask to someone not wearing one

Boarding 

  • The process is by aircraft zone
  • Masks required unless eating/drinking or children
  • Masks available on request and handed out during the flight with amenity kits

Transit in Dubai

  • Bus connection from Terminal D to Terminal C
  • Pass through security again
  • Time to walk, stretch, have a coffee, check emails etc
  • On reboarding (entry to flight gate) we had to show our passport, boarding pass and Portugal entry form QR code
  • Masks were worn throughout the airport in Dubai

Arrival in Portugal

  • Long delays due to the arrival of other flights into Lisbon but once at Customs, we were only asked for our passports. Stamped and we were free to proceed.

Out and about in Portugal 

  • Lisbon, Portimao, Porto and most places we visited in the country felt like pre-pandemic times. Plenty of people out and about, alfresco dining, and busy European cities.
  • The only requirement was to wear a mask whilst indoors and on public transport, touring coaches and transfers, no QR scanning etc …

Not required by Portuguese authorities but by the cruise line

  • Testing (RAT) may be available on arrival at the port of departure which was an option with Silversea

Embarkation

  • Once at Lisbon Port it was a smooth check-in process. 
  • The ship required a negative COVID result in order to board. As we had a PCR test in Sydney within the last 72hrs this was acceptable. 
  • We could also avail of the RAT test at the port but having the PCR made the process quicker.
  • We were also asked for our passport and international COVID Vaccination Certificate. Once this was done we were checked in and on the ship in less than 30 minutes.

Onboard

  • Many have asked about mask wearing onboard which may take away from the overall experience.
  • We were not required to wear masks at any time whilst onboard with the exception of the Panorama Lounge (main show lounge/theatre). This is an intimate space that can host a large number of passengers.
  • In the buffet restaurant we were not allowed to serve ourselves and the attendants were more than happy to assist us.

Return to Australia

  • RAT and PCR tests are available on the ship on the day prior to disembarkation (free of charge). Results emailed within 3 hours, also provided in hard copy form with passport at the gangway at disembarkation
  • Download the Australia DPD app from App Store
  • Set up an account with a username and password
  • Create new entry
  • Need flight details (list all flights from the departure point to arrival back in Australia if on connecting flights)
  • Scan copy of information page of passport
  • Take selfie
  • Verify personal details
  • Scan copy of International vaccination status
  • Scan copy of PCR or rapid antigen test results
  • The App needs to show all areas as COMPLETED
  • Take a screenshot of that page. It will likely be needed at the point of first check-in for your flight(s) home to verify all conditions are met prior to arrival in Australia

REMEMBER no liquids of more than 100ml each in carry-on luggage. All must be stored in a clear plastic bag and presented at security at airports throughout the world!

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Travelling in a COVID World

Written by Managing Director of Cruise Express, Meg Hill
April 2022

There is a lot to know before you go!

What you need to know and do varies greatly based on the destination, airline and what you’re doing when you get there.

Rules and regulations are changing all the time

An agent can help navigate through the endless websites, watch for updates, assist to complete online forms, and simplify the process and any stress involved in pre-departure plans.

What you’ll need (as of April 2022)

  • At a minimum – to be at least double vaccinated (booster preferable if you qualify) or have an official medical exemption/Dr clearance letter if you have tested positive previously.
  • Create and download a physical copy of the international version of either of the above documents. 
  • An International Vaccination Certificate is downloaded from your Medicare app.
  • IMPORTANT: If you’ve had Covid in the 6-8 weeks prior to your departure, you need to obtain a Certificate of Recovery from your GP. Depending on destination and mode of travel on arrival (in our case cruising in Portugal), a negative PCR test result was taken within the past 72 hours.

Our experience

  • Pre-booked apps with Histopath $79 per person
  • SMS to confirm
  • On arrival proceed for test before checking in
  • At SYD a large tent/marquee is located outside the Departures Hall
  • Open early till late (check hours)
  • No waiting
  • Show passport and answer ID questions
  • Test of mouth, throat and nose
  • Less than 5 min
  • Results expected in 1.5 hours, by SMS
  • Can return for a printed copy
  • Our results arrived in approximately 30 minutes via SMS
  • Written copy approximately 5 minutes.

 

Proceeded to the airline check-in

  • Staff screening guests prior to joining check-in lines
  • Key questions – vaccination status and end destination
  • Depending on this, other paperwork may be required
  • In our case, completion of an online ‘Entry to Portugal’ form confirming our arrival and stay details (flight and seat numbers*, departure and arrival ports, address on arrival) plus home address and an emergency contact
  • Check-in, immigration and security processes are unchanged

*complete after airline online check-in!

The Terminal 

  • Was very quiet, with many shops, eating outlets as far bars closed (sadly permanently in some cases)
  • Masks required unless eating/drinking
  • Witnesses a police officer hand out a mask to someone not wearing one

Boarding 

  • The process is by aircraft zone
  • Masks required unless eating/drinking or children
  • Masks available on request and handed out during the flight with amenity kits

Transit in Dubai

  • Bus connection from Terminal D to Terminal C
  • Pass through security again
  • Time to walk, stretch, have a coffee, check emails etc
  • On reboarding (entry to flight gate) we had to show our passport, boarding pass and Portugal entry form QR code
  • Masks were worn throughout the airport in Dubai

Arrival in Portugal

  • Long delays due to the arrival of other flights into Lisbon but once at Customs, we were only asked for our passports. Stamped and we were free to proceed.

Out and about in Portugal 

  • Lisbon, Portimao, Porto and most places we visited in the country felt like pre-pandemic times. Plenty of people out and about, alfresco dining, and busy European cities.
  • The only requirement was to wear a mask whilst indoors and on public transport, touring coaches and transfers, no QR scanning etc …

Not required by Portuguese authorities but by the cruise line

  • Testing (RAT) may be available on arrival at the port of departure which was an option with Silversea

Embarkation

  • Once at Lisbon Port it was a smooth check-in process. 
  • The ship required a negative COVID result in order to board. As we had a PCR test in Sydney within the last 72hrs this was acceptable. 
  • We could also avail of the RAT test at the port but having the PCR made the process quicker.
  • We were also asked for our passport and international COVID Vaccination Certificate. Once this was done we were checked in and on the ship in less than 30 minutes.

Onboard

  • Many have asked about mask wearing onboard which may take away from the overall experience.
  • We were not required to wear masks at any time whilst onboard with the exception of the Panorama Lounge (main show lounge/theatre). This is an intimate space that can host a large number of passengers.
  • In the buffet restaurant we were not allowed to serve ourselves and the attendants were more than happy to assist us.

Return to Australia

  • RAT and PCR tests are available on the ship on the day prior to disembarkation (free of charge). Results emailed within 3 hours, also provided in hard copy form with passport at the gangway at disembarkation
  • Download the Australia DPD app from App Store
  • Set up an account with a username and password
  • Create new entry
  • Need flight details (list all flights from the departure point to arrival back in Australia if on connecting flights)
  • Scan copy of information page of passport
  • Take selfie
  • Verify personal details
  • Scan copy of International vaccination status
  • Scan copy of PCR or rapid antigen test results
  • The App needs to show all areas as COMPLETED
  • Take a screenshot of that page. It will likely be needed at the point of first check-in for your flight(s) home to verify all conditions are met prior to arrival in Australia

REMEMBER no liquids of more than 100ml each in carry-on luggage. All must be stored in a clear plastic bag and presented at security at airports throughout the world!

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Your email address will not be published.

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