Should I cancel our trip to Paris after the events of the past week?

Travel Q&A

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The Independent Travel

Q. Just wondering if you have any advice for anyone meant to be travelling to Paris imminently? I have flights and a hotel booked next week, as well as tickets to Disneyland Paris. After the terrorist attacks I'm at a loss what to do at such short notice – I can't cancel without losing all the money. Rosie, via email

A. The past week has been terrible for the people of Paris, and shocked the world, but I cannot see any reason to postpone or cancel a trip to the city or to Disneyland Paris.

The terrorists had specific targets for most of their 17 murders: the offices of Charlie Hebdo magazine and a kosher supermarket in the suburbs. No tourist locations were targeted. The capital has been in disarray, with a number of security scares (including a false alarm at Disneyland on Saturday, but France is now getting back to normal – or the "new normal", with 10,000 troops deployed.

There should be no effect on your trip beyond tighter security searches. The latest Foreign Office advice says: "Be especially vigilant and follow the security advice issued by the French authorities." That is well short of recommending that you avoid Paris.

The travel companies – airlines, Eurostar and hotels – do not expect these awful events to disrupt tourism in the coming weeks and months. Quite reasonably, they are not offering people the opportunity to cancel without penalty.

So I urge you to go ahead with your trip. Partly, that's because at this time it is important to travel to France to show support for the nation. Partly, because mid-January is an excellent time to visit the city and its fabulous theme park without excessive crowds. But mostly, because if travellers start cancelling long-anticipated trips, the terrorists will claim a victory.

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