Happy Valley

Is travelling abroad worth it? Forget the factor 50, it’s all bar codes, locator forms and tests

Bogged down by Covid travel rules, Charlotte Cripps reassess her spiritual beliefs about abundance and heads off on a pre-holiday shopping spree

Wednesday 04 August 2021 21:30 BST
(Illustration by Amara May)

Be careful what you wish for. Lola’s new passport arrived in the nick of time. The holiday to Portugal is on: is a pastel-de-nata binge on the cards? I’m not sure if this trip with my 89-year-old dad, Lola, 5, and Liberty 3, is a good idea or a potential nightmare... But my God, I need a break from my dog. Just the thought of being able to walk barefoot across the sand without worrying about him terrorising people for food feels liberating.

But first I have to get there without any of us getting Covid or getting pinged by the NHS Track and Trace. The bureaucracy is hell. Forget the factor 50, it’s all bar codes, locater forms, Covid tests and vaccine travel passports. It’s taken all the fun out of it.

The simple pleasure of browsing the mini toiletries in Boots and obsessing over which bikini to buy is lost on me. I’m just bogged down with the paperwork, dotting the “Is” and crossing the “Ts”. I still manage to get a bit of pre-holiday shopping in for my dad whose new elasticated shorts fell down to his ankles while we did our Covid fit-to-fly test. But I’ve left it to the last minute to plan anything to wear at all.

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