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It is estimated that one billion people, or 15% of the world’s population, live with some form of disability. Accessibility is therefore a very important issue in the travel industry and one in the forefront of discussion as we pursue greater inclusion for all. The retreats below include accessible features and experiences to cater for the needs of the differently abled: ramps allow easy access to the pool or spa for wheelchair users; physiotherapeutic treatments can be performed by qualified staff to ease the symptoms of a variety of medical conditions; delicious, nutritious cuisine can be prepared within the parameters of even the most constraining diets. Every aspect of the wellness holiday experience is made as easy as possible for all people to be included.

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The UK’s travel entry regulations have tightened drastically in an effort to lessen the spread of coronavirus. All travel corridors have been closed, and from 18th January most international passengers will have to produce a negative PCR test in order to travel to the UK. The UK has also introduced a travel ban on all flights from South America and select countries due to the detection of a new strain of the virus in Brazil. 

Which countries are affected by the travel ban?

Anyone who has been in, or travelled through, any country in South America or Portugal in the past 10 days will be denied entry into the UK. Portugal is included due to its strong ties to Brazil, as are Cape Verde and Panama. These travel bans have been put in place to protect the UK from a new and potentially more transmissive strain of the virus. 

Travel is already banned from any country in South Africa due to another COVID variant that was identified in December. 

The rules do not apply to UK citizens, long-term visa holders or those with residency rights - but they will have to self-isolate upon return to the UK. Hauliers travelling from Portugal to transport essential goods are also exempt.

What are the new rules on testing?

From 18th January, anyone travelling to the UK, whether by plane, boat, or train, including UK citizens, will have to show proof of a negative Covid-19 test before boarding. The test may be taken up to 72 hours before their departure.

The government says it will accept any test with at least 97% specificity and 80% sensitivity.

If your test result is positive, you must not travel. You must follow local rules and guidance for positive coronavirus cases. 

Who is exempt from testing?

  • Children under 11
  • Passengers from the Common Travel Area (the Republic of Ireland, Channel Islands, or the Isle of Man)
  • Travellers from the Falkland Islands, Ascension Islands and St Helena
  • Hauliers, air, international rail, and maritime crew
  • Travellers from St Lucia, Barbados, Antigua and Barbuda arriving in the UK before 21 January

What happens if you enter the UK without a PCR test result? 

Those who do not comply with the rules will face a fine of £500. Border Force officials will be carrying out spot checks.

Do travellers entering the UK need to quarantine?

The UK has closed all travel corridors until at least 15 February. This means that even with the new testing requirements, most travellers - including UK citizens - must still self-isolate for 10 days on arrival. 

Exceptions are made for people coming from the Common Travel Area. Some business travellers no longer have to quarantine when re-entering the UK, and a small number of other jobs are exempt, including arts professionals, journalists, defence personnel and drivers. 

All travellers must provide contact details and their UK address when filling in the Passenger Locator Form. Please note that Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have their own quarantine rules.

Is there a way to shorten quarantine? 

Travellers arriving in England from certain countries can shorten their quarantine by ordering a private test through the Test to Release scheme. The test must be booked by travellers before their journey, and it can only be taken after five full days of self-isolation. Tests cost between £65 and £120, and results are normally received within 48 hours. People who test negative can stop self-isolating once they have their result. However, those who test positive must quarantine for another 10 days from the date of the test.

The government has published a list of approved private testing companies.

Will you be fined for breaking quarantine rules? 

Breaking quarantine rules is a criminal offence. People not abiding by the rules risk being fined and could end up with a criminal record. Failure to self-isolate can mean a £1,000 fine in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland, or £480 in Scotland. Fines in England for persistent offenders have now doubled to £10,000.

There is also a fine of £100 for not filling in the passenger locator form, and people can be fined up to £3,200 in England for providing inaccurate contact details, or £1,920 in Wales.

What do the new rules mean for your travel plans?

Though travel - unless under specific circumstances - is not currently advised, restrictions are likely to ease up after lockdown. For more information about where you can go and what regulations there are in different countries, read our blog on which countries require a PCR test for entry. You can also get up-to-date information at our COVID-19 information hub

Our Travel Specialists are on hand to help you navigate the current restrictions and to discuss tailor-making your next wellness holiday, call 0203 397 8891 or contact us here today.

 

My name is Carla Bangueses and I started my career in Performing Arts and the circus where I forged a dancing career as a professional contemporary and classic ballet dancer. As a dancer and circus artist, I was often injured and this probably led to my fascination and curiosity about my body ́s responses to those injuries, so I went on to take my degree in Physiotherapy. While completing my studies I was intrigued by the neurological and musculoskeletal areas of the body. The accumulation of these events in sports and Physiotherapy brought me to Pilates and I saw the incredible effect it had on the human body!” 

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During these uncertain times, having something to look forward to can be vastly beneficial to a healthy disposition and a resilient mental state. COVID-19 restrictions have left many couples with a heightened sense of wanderlust and a strong desire to escape away to recharge their batteries and allow the body and mind time to restWith Valentine’s day around the corner, it’s an ideal time to plan far ahead and book a romantic bespoke retreat for you and your partner, something you can look toward in these trying timesWhether you yearn for an amorous getaway or a chance to exert yourselves with a focus on fitness and rejuvenation, you are sure to find the perfect wellness holiday for you!  

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As if wedding planning isn’t stressful enough, Covid-19 has turned up the heat for all the brides-to-be this year, and our best spa holidays for hen weekends might be just the thing you need to de-stress before the big day. A wholesome trip for the whole bridal party, why not spend your last moments of single-life indulging in spa treatments, relaxing classes, and sauna sessions with your nearest and dearest girlfriends?

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Considering a solo holiday but apprehensive about going on holiday by yourself? Don’t worry as holidaying on your own can be an awakening experience; an opportunity for some serious self-improvement that would be impossible with more people in your party. Solo healthy holidays open up a world of freedom, focus, exploration and betterment.

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With the vaccine being rolled out, treatments have indeed begun, and even though we’re back in lockdown, it looks as though the end could be in sight! Now, we have all had to undergo serious changes in our lives, which in turn has severely affected our wellness, both physically and mentally. It is high time to look after your wellbeing, whether you need serenity, spirituality, weight-loss assistance or simply to just blow off some steam; one of the best ways to do this is through a wellness holiday

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Defined as a holiday where 3 or more generations are present, multi-generational holidays fell out of fashion for many years but are experiencing a renaissance in 2021. In the wake of the pandemic, where separation from extended family members was mandatory, the multi-generational active trip is taking off as the new favourite form of family holiday. Travellers are eager to reconnect with loved ones and make up for lost time; embarking on trips the whole family can appreciate and enjoy.

 

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Picking the right beginner fitness holiday can be a daunting challenge. There are lots of fitness breaks out there and it is not a one size fits all arrangement. The gruelling demands of a triathlon retreat might be great for those looking to crack the ironman but they’re not designed for someone just looking to tone up for the summer. It can be a challenge as great as the break itself to choose the getaway that is perfect for you. To help you make sense of all the fitness breaks for beginners, we’ve ranked the best getaways based on your athletic aims. So, whether you need a quick top up on a 3 day retreat or you’re willing to fully submit yourself to the fitness gurus on a 21 day bootcamp, Health and Fitness Travel can help you discern which is the ultimate fitness break for you.

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This world has limited resources and we are polluting it every single day. Nearly 5% of greenhouse emissions are caused by the tourism industry. Nature should be conserved, not damaged. Unfortunately, we travel without keeping in mind the effect of our actions on the environment. This does not mean we should stop travelling, but we should start to travel more sustainably i.e. to find ways where we can enjoy the holiday without tarnishing the cultural and natural environment. This may not happen overnight but if all the travellers can go on eco-friendly holidays and engage in healthy activities, we can save the environment for the betterment of the planet. Here are a few ideas on how to be a more sustainable traveller: 

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After a turbulent yearit’s safe to say we could all do with some much-needed relaxation - there is no better way to do that than unwinding and taking a moment to pause, reflect and renew. Whether you are looking to rejuvenate your body and mind, quietly relax into tranquillity or strike a balance between spa and sports, we have compiled a go-to list for luxury spa breaks for men in Europe. 

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The coincidence that the popular song ‘The Final Countdown’ is by the band ‘Europe’ is sheer irony at its absolute best. We all know the clock is now five minutes to midnight; Brexit is nigh, but what does it mean for travel from 1st January 2021? This past year’s media has been dominated by the world-changing Coronavirus pandemic (for good reason) and in doing so, removed the spotlight from Brexit and all of a sudden, the departure from the EU is now suddenly upon us. With the release of the COVID-19 vaccine, we are predicting a major surge in travel for 2021 with people making up for the year before with a well-deserved wellness holiday. However, before embarking on your next healthy getaway there are changes for UK citizens, keep reading for crucial travel information. 

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As the year draws to a close, many are being bitten by the desire for change. The final holiday of the year can be a heavy week or two of over-eating and under-exercising. For a break with a difference, commit to creating a new you with a healthy holiday of self-improvement. Life-Coaching Retreats do more than your average holiday; they aim to change, to reset and recalibrate every part of your life. All the strands that are necessary for productive living are brought together for a comprehensive enhancement in one health focused package. Following your retreat, you’ll be readily equipped with the psychological tools to carry your progress forward. With guidance from the life-coaching experts, you’ll find your way to a fresh start and a reinvigorated you. Let’s explore our recommended life-coaching retreats for 2021:

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Chronic pain can disturb your life, restrict you from daily activities, and can be difficult to manage. It can also affect your mental health, making you anxious, frustrated, and depressed. Some of the most common chronic diseases are backache, nerve damage, arthritis, and migraines. Painkillers can temporarily mask the symptoms of pain, but they do not address the underlying problems that make them persistent. Treatment like surgeries, implants, steroid injections can have long-term side effects on the body. But there are natural treatments available, going on a wellness holiday may be a solution for you. Health and Fitness Travel offers a range of retreats to combat ongoing chronic illness. Each retreat uses a holistic approach that includes physiotherapy, Ayurveda therapy, Pilates, yoga, massage, acupuncture, hydrotherapy and more to treat the underlying problem from its root. You will not only learn how to manage the chronic pain but will be able to relax on the retreat, leaving you confident in addressing and managing chronic pain. Here are just a few of our bespoke retreats:

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To put it simply, a wellness retreat is a holiday that concentrates on your health goals whereas a wellness tour spreads out your time: satisfying your love of culture or natural geography as well as your love of spa treatments. On a retreat, your time will be spent at the resort, usually enrolled on a wellness programme, and supported by experts in their field within a luxurious setting. A tour, on the other hand, will take you on a journey through your destination country and expose you to the wellness practices of the region. One style is immersive, a dive into the intricacies and depths of health therapies and the other is an exploration of all the region has to offer in terms of wellness and culture. Want to find out which one is right for you? Keep reading! 

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Considered one of the most welcoming countries around the globe, Thailand translates as ‘Land of the Free’. Travellers have been flocking to this country for years to enjoy the enriching culture, spectacular landscapes, and 3219km of gorgeous coastline. Thailand has also garnered itself prestige for having some of the most incredible wellness retreats, infused with the nation’s spirituality, medicine practises and meditation, becoming a standout destination for a wellness pilgrimage.  

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Wellness Experts

Interviews from leading health and fitness professionals from around the world to explore a wealth of knowledge in their areas of expertise.

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