MEDIA RELEASE: Ten travel tips Manitobans should consider before flying this summerOctober 18, 20224 min read
Winnipeg MB, July 13, 2022 – CAA Manitoba (CAA MB) has compiled a list of ten things that Manitobans should be aware of if they are considering travelling this summer – both inside and outside the country.
“Those who are considering booking a trip should make sure they understand the scope of what travel looks like at the moment,” said Susan Postma, regional manager, CAA Manitoba. “The checklist for planning a trip has changed and we want to help people navigate this new environment.
“Airports are experiencing delays with varying degrees of impact, and Manitobans should be prepared.”
Through consultation with its top travel agents, CAA MB has identified ten key considerations that potential travelers may not be aware of. Anyone who is considering travel in the current environment should remember that travel requirements and regulations are continually changing.
Expect itinerary changes. CAA Manitoba travel agents say our Members are experiencing schedule changes for flights. Subscribe to the airline’s text message service to be immediately notified of any changes, and book connecting flights with more time in between than you normally would if available. A travel agent is also a valuable resource if this happens.
Consider packing a carryon instead of checking luggage. Potential baggage delays mean that your luggage may not arrive with you, or take extra time to be unloaded off the plane. If you bring a carryon, make sure it fits the size requirements for all the airlines you are flying on, and with any tour operators. When using a carryon to travel, you still need to follow the 3-1-1 rule: three ounces of liquid, gel, aerosol, cream or paste that fit in one quart-sized resealable bag. If you are checking luggage, make sure your carryon has your hygiene essentials, any medications and perhaps a change of clothing.
It will take longer to get through airport security. The old standby of being at the airport one hour before takeoff for domestic flights and two hours before international flights no longer apply. CAA Manitoba currently recommends a minimum of two hours before domestic flight departures and three hours for international flights. While waiting in line, take off your jacket, belt, and empty your pockets so you’re ready to quickly place your belongings in the scanner.
Make sure all your documentation is in order before you book. Your passport should still be valid six months after your travel date, as this is required in several countries. Passports themselves are taking longer than usual to renew, so it should be done several months before you travel. Each destination has varying documentation requirements, so make sure you fully understand what information you need to have ready and in what format.
Buy travel insurance and understand what is covered. Make sure you have $5 million in coverage for emergency medical situations and that illness related to COVID-19 is included. Understand your entitlements for situations like denied boarding in the event of a positive test, trip cancellation or delays, what luggage is covered and what isn’t.
Car rentals need to be booked months in advance. High demand as well as a shortage of vehicles means a shortage of rental cars. Some rental agencies, particularly on the east and west coasts, are not allowing vehicles to be rented in one city and left in another. A travel agent can help you navigate this.
Be patient, be kind. Around the globe, airlines are dealing with staff shortages and luggage handling back-ups. Keep in mind that the staff at the airports are there to help you, and that things may take longer than usual.
COVID-19 is still a major consideration. Confirm the COVID-19 situation at destination prior to booking. Understand the risk level associated with travel to a particular destination by checking the Government of Canada Travel Advice and Advisories website. Individual travel advisories remain on a country-by-country basis. It is important that Manitobans understand the ongoing uncertainty associated with international travel, whether that be related to the continued community transmission of COVID-19, or state of health care systems in destinations hit hard by the pandemic.
Stay connected. It is important to have access to trusted, up-to-date information while travelling so you can monitor changing conditions and requirements and adapt accordingly. Bookmark the Global Affairs Canada website prior to departure and check it regularly while abroad. It is also a good idea to sign up for Registration of Canadians Abroad and stay in touch with a family or friend that has knowledge of your travel plans. Find these and more information at caamanitoba.com/travel.
Confirm change and cancellation flexibility with your travel service provider. Many airlines and hotels have been providing more flexibility when it comes to refunds and changes to bookings. Make sure you understand any key dates related to cancellation and changes and whether you are entitled to a refund or a future travel voucher or credit at the time of booking.
Susan Postma Regional Manager
Susan oversees CAA Manitoba's retail and travel services with more than a decade of experience.