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What it is like to fly at the moment? We flew to Italy last week – Story and pictures

What is it like to fly these days?

Clark and Chris from our UK offices flew over to Pisa this week from Manchester Airport. As most are intrigued about the flying situation, Clark recounted his journey so we have an idea about what is going on – and he took some photos for us too. At time of writing there is no quarantine period when flying between the UK and Italy.

Clark:  “I was collected for airport transfer to Manchester airport, only difference was I had to wear a mask during transport.

Arrived at Manchester airport, quieter than normal but still plenty of flights departing and arriving, with many passengers still travelling, at the entrance you have to wear a mask and hand sanitiser stations are placed all over the airport.

Security is as normal, entrance is a scanning system where you scan your QR on your phone or printed boarding pass.

We had a coffee and some breakfast in the lounge and you can remove your mask whilst seated when eating / drinking – Just like current situation in restaurants and bars.

Our gate was announced like normal and we popped on our masks and went to the gate for boarding, boarding passes were scanned and passport checked at boarding gate”

“Seated on plane as normal, our flight was possibly 50% full, I noticed it looked like spare seats had been left vacant between passengers where possible. We sat on Row 16, we had 3 people on this entire row of 6 seats, the same applied to the row in front and only 2 people on the entire row behind.

It is worth noting that the 50% capacity isn’t a requirement, the flight was just quieter than normal. Airlines insist on masks being worn throughout the flight unless eating or drinking (they do serve a limited menu during the flight with drinks and snack foods available) and the air within the cabin is circulated through its own system for protection purposes.

Prior to departure we had to fill in a form to consent that prior to travel we did not have any symptoms of COVID-19, we had this ready for passport control checks”

“The weather brightened up later as always. Temperatures in September / October hover in the mid-20s which is very much like July in the UK.

Once we arrived at Toscana Holiday Village we dropped our bags off in our holiday homes and headed straight for the on-site restaurant for a hearty Italian meal and some refreshing cold beverages. There is great table service around the pool area and the food was delicious. It was fantastic to relax in such a peaceful and idyllic setting after travelling all day”

Delicious food – you can either eat in the restaurant or enjoy a BBQ on your patio or terrace – or go out to one of the many restaurants in Tuscany. 

Arriving in Florence and sightseeing – River Arno, Florence Cathedral, Ponte Vecchio, Baptistery of St John and Piazza della Signoria

Travel dates Thursday 1st October – Saturday 3rd October 2020


Update as of 8th October: Italy makes coronavirus tests mandatory for travellers from the UK

Nothing to worry about, most countries already have this in place for travel from another country, you can take a free Covid-19 test at the airport when you arrive in Italy. This usually takes 30 minutes to an hour. You won’t be allowed to leave the airport until you have your result so if you would prefer not to wait then you should arrange to take a private test prior to your arrival. The test needs to have been carried out in the 72 hours prior to your travel and should be a molecular (PCR) or an antigenic test. You’ll be asked to show proof of your test date and result at the border, you should not use the NHS testing service to get a test in order to facilitate your travel to another country.

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