At the moment we are being guided by this statement from STF & OEAPPlease take a look for more information.
As you will see, the advice only covers groups travelling until 16 April. However we understand that it is likely that this will be extended along with all social distancing measures.
As we are sure you will appreciate this is an incredibly challenging time for everyone involved in educational travel. Information and policies are changing on an almost daily basis. At the moment we are awaiting updates from amongst others; the Department for Education, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, the Department for Transport, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, ABTA, the School Travel Forum and some insurance companies, all of which has a bearing on the advice which we give all our groups and not just school groups. Consequently, if you are departing on or after 01 June we would very much appreciate your patience and forbearance whilst we wait to hear back from some or all of these organisations and are in a position to give you more constructive guidance and advice. Hopefully this should be within a matter of days.
However for groups departing on or before 31 May we appreciate the urgency of you knowing what your options are so our staff will be in touch this week to discuss these with you.
We are pleased to advise that the DfE have confirmed that they will accept all cancellation claims for groups travelling this academic year from all RPA members so if this applies to you, you may wish to start this process before we are able to contact you. Please take a look for more information.
It is also worth mentioning that some schools and other groups have successfully claimed for the cost of cancelled trips using their own insurance so you may wish to try this before we are able to contact you.
At Next Generation Travel our staff values and behaviours are guided and managed by the NGT TOGETHER words…
We truly hope that we can fully demonstrate our absolute passion to work with educationalists to deliver exceptional learning outside the classroom experiences, make the process as easy as possible and offer you real workable solutions to keep these valuable experiences in the school calendar.
We are dedicated to bringing you the latest news and updates regarding travel.
Please find below a joint statement from the STF and ABTA as of March 13th 2020. Our current understanding of the situation regarding school trips is as follows:
The government has advised schools that they should not undertake international school trips at this stage. This is due to concerns that the schools would face significant challenges in making arrangements to ensure children’s welfare should adult supervisors or children be required to self-isolate. Schools will decide how to act upon this advice. If schools do cancel their trips, normal cancellation terms will apply.
Schools should contact either their own general insurers or the Department for Education as they may have some financial cover in place for this scenario. This is one of the areas we are seeking clarity on urgently, so we will update again as soon as we have more info.
The Government is not advising schools to stop trips within the UK so schools can proceed as planned if they wish. The Government is advising schools to refresh their risk assessments.Customers wanting to cancel must do so at their own cost, normal cancellation charges apply.
We now know that the UK will leave the EU at 23h00 (GMT) on 31 January 2020. Following Brexit we will enter a transition period which will run, at least, until the end of December 2020. During the transition period everything will remain the same and you can continue to travel as you do now.
We will continue to monitor the information provided by travel industry experts, organisations like ABTA and the UK Government and pick out what we believe is relevant for you.
Common questions about travel after 31 January 2020
Will flights still operate?
Yes. During the transition period, everything will stay the same until the end of December 2020 and flights will continue as normal.
Will my coach journey still operate?
Coaches will still be able to travel to, from and around EU countries as usual.
Will trains from the UK to the EU still operate?
Trains from the UK to the EU will continue to operate as usual.
Will we have to show our passports at each border?
We do advise you keep passports handy when travelling throughout Europe, as you may be required to prove your right to travel at border crossings or security checkpoints.
Will I still be able to use a collective passport?
Whilst the position as to the validity of collective passports for travel to the EU has not changed, if you are able to arrange for each traveller to have an individual passport which has the requisite validity, this may help to forestall any issues which might arise.
Will I need a visa to travel to the EU after Brexit?
No. UK travellers will not need a visa to travel to the EU after Brexit.
European Health Insurance Card and travel insurance
The European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) allows any EU citizen to access state medical care when they are travelling in another EU country. UK registered EHICs will still be valid throughout 2020.
ABTA has always advised when travelling to the EU and beyond, that it is important you take out travel insurance. Our tour price includes comprehensive travel insurance as standard. So, unless you advise us that your school or college has its own travel insurance and you wish to decline our insurance, you will automatically have insurance cover with us.
If you have an existing booking with Next Generation Travel group brand:
We have placed forward contracts for foreign currency so fluctuations in the exchange rate are highly unlikely to affect the price of your tour.
Please note however that, if there is a change in legislation that will affect your overall tour price and which is out of our control, eg visa costs, surcharges, this cost would be passed on to you.
As is always our policy at Next Generation Travel we will do our best to do the right thing to work with you to ensure your trip would continue.
If you have not yet booked your tour:
Due to our forward buying policy for foreign currency, we will work with you to ensure there is no or a low impact on pricing. The travel industry is reporting that the sensible advice is to book now to secure your booking on current currency rates.
What is the law on price changes?
If there are increases in transportation costs, taxes or fees chargeable for services post Brexit, the law says that package holiday providers, like Next Generation Travel, are permitted to increase their prices. However, we are pleased to confirm that there would be no change within 20 days of your departure and we would cover the first 2% of any price increase. In the unlikely circumstances that prices were to increase by more than 2% you may be asked to pay an additional fee however where the price increase is 10% or higher, you have the right to cancel and receive a full refund of all monies paid, except for any amendment charges.
Will overall prices go up in the future?
Tour prices in the future will always be open to normal market and economic fluctuations such as currency and service prices. Our foreign currency forward buying policy means we always look to protect customers from the impact of currency fluctuations. However, overall tour prices may in the future be affected by changes in legislation such as visa costs, surcharges etc. or increased cost in services such as flights or ferry crossings.
At Next Generation Travel our experienced staff will always provide you with a tour price which is based either on the actual current rates for your service or estimated rates which are based on our extensive knowledge of the travel and industry. We will always communicate any price changes as they are given to us and have an open and honest pricing policy, which will ensure you should have no surprises later on.
Under EU rules, the cost of making calls, sending messages or using the internet on your phone in the EU is the same in the UK and this will continue after 31 January 2020.