Please sign in to post.

Travel to Italy April/May 2021

Good afternoon,
Curious to know the group's thoughts on travel to Italy in Spring of 2021. We were booked to travel this past March and then with the pandemic everything came to a halt. Per Lufthansa I have until August 31st to rebook and can rebook until the end of 2021. Do you think it is wise to rebook for April or May or should we postpone until the Fall. Realize no one has a crystal ball here, just looking for input. We would be traveling to Florence, Rome, and Sorrento. Thanks

Posted by
6539 posts

I would wait until the Fall. I am not optimistic about the US getting its act together by Spring (or getting the spread tamped down enough to be deemed acceptable by other countries absent a vaccine). If wearing masks and quick-turnaround testing have been such a debacle, I can imagine what kind of circus a vaccine rollout will be (assuming one is available in adequate quantities - also, it takes one's body several weeks after the vaccine to be protected, so it's not automatic).

Posted by
20972 posts

I agree with Agnes. I think early 2021 is very IFFY. A lot of things need to fall in place for that to be a good solution. Our fall Italy was canceled and we very tentatively looking at fall 2021 BUT more realistically think 2022 is a better time frame.

Posted by
4657 posts

I would wait a few more months.

What happens if you don't book before August 31st?
We have an Air France voucher that we plan on using for next year and if we don't use it in a year, we get a full refund.

Posted by
10 posts

We were told by Lufthansa that we needed to rebook by August 31st but could use the ticket thru 2021. They did not mention an option for a refund but doesnt mean that isnt an option. I honestly didnt think this would go on for more than a few months and we would be on our way.

Posted by
1625 posts

I'm with the others who advise to wait until the Autumn months.

Posted by
10 posts

Thank you all for your input. I feel awful changing our hotel reservations yet again. Everyone in Italy has been so wonderful but in my heart, i know you all are right....Fall would be a safer bet.

Posted by
1625 posts

🙌 We hope travel to Europe resumes. For me, I can't wait to return to Rome. I miss Navona and the street musicians! 🎶🎹🎻🎶

I want to visit Florence for a few days too.

Good luck with your plans. 💼👜👒👠

Posted by
2397 posts

Maybe a safer bet, but just a bet. I have trouble understanding why anyone would book anything at this point. Dream, plan, talk, yes. Book? No. Nobody knows where this is going. Will we have a vaccine? Can you get it? Will it work? Will there be drugs for this? What travel restrictions will be in place? Those who feel late 2021 or 2022 might be a good time to travel and are making reservations must have a crystal ball. I’ll be booking a return to Europe when I know its safe not when I think it might be.

Posted by
1625 posts

True Alan. But the OP wrote their airline was making them commit/choose a rebook by August 31st.

Choosing a much later time is no guarantee for them, but they won't lose the airfare in this way.

Adding: Maybe the OP will inquire to Lufthansa about a refund option. If Americans are still banned going to Europe next year, I would hope airlines will be nice.

Posted by
10 posts

Precisely. I will roll the dice and book for Fall rather than give Lufthansa 2600 dollars. If we are in some other end of the world scenario then they can just grant us another voucher

Posted by
671 posts

If you have to re-book, I would go as far out as you would like to travel. Worry about next fall for instance.

Posted by
2397 posts

Choosing a much later time is no guarantee for them, but they won't lose the airfare in this way.

If they can travel that is. If I were in this position I’d start working on Lufthansa. Tell them you can’t use a voucher before the date given and see what options are offered. Maybe a refund, maybe another couple of years? I can’t see the cycle of booking and canceling leading to anything but stress, but that’s me.

Posted by
1625 posts

Well that is true also. It's definitely a tough call or blind uncertainty (giving suggestions as the OP asked.)

Ultimately, it's the virus who is in control right now.

As dmbrigati wrote, they would rather roll the dice for some months than lose $2600.

Posted by
417 posts

dmb...We are in a similar situation and I remember something about no change fees if re-booked by August 31. I checked the Lufthansa website just now and found this...

For bookings made until 31 August 2020 and travel on/before 30 April 2021, the Lufthansa Group airlines waive the rebooking fees for all newly booked flights worldwide and offer a one-time rebooking free of charge – regardless of the conditions of the original fare purchased. Passengers can in future rebook to a new travel date until 31 December 2021 without rebooking fees. Rebooking must be done by 31 January 2021. If the original fare is no longer available, the corresponding difference must be paid.

If i'm reading it correctly, there are also no fees if you re-book up to Dec 31 2021.

Posted by
156 posts

This is off topic, but personally, I don't like the way (many o)f the airlines are handling the situation.. I live in Italy and have received a refund from one low-cost airline, while the other originally gave me a choice between a refund and a voucher to be used within a specific period of time. I choose the refund, but Italy imposed some sort of law and are only requiring the airlines to provide vouchers. This is also true for live theater tickets, and other modes of transportation, which I'm still waiting to be reimbursed / receive a voucher for. It's a difficult situation all around. I plan to call my credit card company to see if they will dispute it.

As for travel, I agree with what others have said about postponing for as long as possible. Keeping an eye open to see what happens with the pandemic this winter may help you decide what to do. Numbers of cases are also going up in Italy, and other European countries, since borders have opened. I live in Northern Italy and am waiting to book a trip to Sicily until I see what happens this fall / winter.

Posted by
10 posts

Theresa
Yes Lufthansa falls into the same category. Germany is backing their voucher only program so we can use it for Italy or another local they fly too. 2 of our hotels are vouchers as well but honestly they were non refundable bookings so I am grateful for the voucher. Thank younfor your input. I dont rhink the United States will have the virus under control for quite so time so I can understand the EU being hesitant about allowing Americans in.

Posted by
9522 posts

We are choosing to think optimistically and will book for fall 2021 sometime late this year. I need the psychological boost of believing a trip will happen sooner rather than later. If we book for fall and spring looks good, we may go twice next year. I’ll be in line for vaccine as soon as it is released.

Posted by
69 posts

I like your attitude Laurel from OR
Most likely fall 2021 is going to be ok, but I wouldn’t chance it. The amount of stress and aggravation of you trying to get a refund won’t be worth it, if something happens. That’s one reason, I won’t be booking anything until we get a all clear signal. My time is too valuable for me to be on hold for hours trying to get refund on a cancelled trip... Life is short, and I’m not about waste any emotional energy trying to fight with hotels and airline companies if the trip changes...

Posted by
1534 posts

We live in Italy and went through lockdown in March-May. Everyday after 6pm, Incheck the website emerge Italy post COVID19 numbers. In Italian, there is a verbal summary of yesterday’s results, assuming written by someone in the “CDC” of Italy. Even though the daily cases is around 500+(population of 60 Million), there is clearly concern about Italians returning from abroad (Spain, Croatia, Greece, etc). My gut tells me that Americans won’t be allowed into Italy until there is a vaccine, which might be sometime in 2021. Below is the translated summary from this website. Italy Covid

The daily national increase in cases, today 12 August, is + 0.19% (yesterday + 0.16%) with 251,713 total infected, 202,697 healings and 35,225 deceased (+10); 13,791 infections in progress (+ 230, yesterday 13,561). 52,658 swabs were processed (40,642 yesterday) with 481 positives: the positive / swabs ratio was 0.91% (yesterday 1.01%). Patients with symptoms are down, -22 to 779 (yesterday 801) while intensive care is growing (+4 to 53). New cases reported mainly in: Lombardy 102, Veneto 60, Piedmont 42, Emilia Romagna 41, Lazio 37, Tuscany and Puglia 33, Campania and Sicily 29, Liguria 26. Curve in Lombardy + 0.10% (yesterday + 0.07% ) with 7,960 swabs processed (yesterday 4,537) and 102 positives; positive / swabs ratio 1.28% (yesterday 1.49%); 97,054 total infected: +5 hospitalized (165); intensive care (10) stable; 0 deaths. In Milan, alarm in the reception facility in via Quintiliano, where a young man (already placed in solitary confinement) was found positive for a swab performed in the workplace. The entire structure is subject to a ban on entry and exit, with the control of the police, and all guests will be subjected to tests. Even with an epidemic under control so far, it is clear that the highest risk currently concerns imported cases, which in the last two weeks reached more than 40% of the total, many of which related to Italian tourists returning after a holiday period. . At a national level, the hypothesis of tampons for those returning from Greece and Spain is being studied, with the obligation of 14 days of quarantine for those returning from Croatia: a country not part of the Schengen area from which it has registered in the last few days a surge in imported cases. Similar measures have already been adopted in Emilia Romagna (mandatory test for those returning from Greece, Spain and Malta) and in Puglia, where those returning from the same countries are subject to 14 days of quarantine.

Posted by
406 posts

Fall. Our trip was for next month, and we’ve postponed to Sept. 2021...cautiously. I really think things won’t be normal in the spring. Even if a vaccine is rolled out, it will go to frontline workers first, who knows when the masses will receive one.

Posted by
4 posts

We have resigned ourselves to the likelihood of our October 2020 trip to Tuscany (booked in December 2019) not happening.....we already have travel credits from canceled March 2020 and May 2020 trips that will need to be re-booked for travel before December 2021. I re-booked one to Umbria for end of May 2021 (I know, being optimistic), but always have cancel-for-any-reason travel insurance should we need it. I honestly didn't think we would be so many months into still battling this virus when we first went remote in March. I don't post much on this site, but I do read alot of posts and very much appreciate all the information here!

Posted by
31219 posts

With the current resurgence in virus cases that's occurring in many places in Europe and elsewhere (including the area I live in), I'm not sure "normal" travel will be possible in spring 2021. Italy has been more restrictive than other E.U. countries, so that's another thing to consider. However as you pointed out, none of us has a crystal ball.

If I were planning to travel then, I would not be booking anything that involves non-refundable deposits for air, hotels, etc.

Posted by
68 posts

The possibility of travel to Europe could depend on who wins the election.

Posted by
143 posts

I think all of 2021 is in doubt. We were fortunate to get refunded for our May-June 2020 Luftansa flights from Boston to Ljubljana and return from Dubrovnik. It did take more time than allowed by US law. My daughter's 125-person October wedding this year is postponed until Oct next year and I think the chance it can happen next year is at most 50%.

Posted by
71 posts

Definitely later than sooner. I don't think we will be able to get the vaccine until late 2021 if even then. I am thinking that 2022 will be the first for US citizens to be able to travel abroad safely.

Posted by
71 posts

I agree with all those who advise waiting. I was supposed to go to Italy on Delta in May of 2020 but that was not to be. My Miles account was increased with the non used ticket and I have until 2021 to use it. So now I watch travel videos on youtube and dream of the day when I will be able to travel. Without a universal vaccine we can not go safely anywhere including our neighborhood bar. Be wise, be safe.

Posted by
92 posts

We were gonna leave next week for Italy for our first international trip. But than shit hit the fan! So we changed all our dates to 2021 for Sept/ beginning of October. Airlines refunded us! Hoping to book flights at the end of the year!

Posted by
10 posts

Thank you for everyone's responses. We are going to attempt Fall of 2021 or perhaps even Spring of 2022. It was to be my first trip to Europe...disappointing but it will be so wonderful when we finally get there!!

Posted by
1 posts

I was so glad that I stumbled onto this discussion. This was supposed to be a big travel year for me: NYC in April, Italy in May, and I was supposed to be in Hawaii as of yesterday. None of which happened of course. Italy has been my bucket list trip for years. I did rebook a portion of our trip for May of 2021 and am now considering cancelling even that portion. I booked because an upscale hotel that I would normally not be able to afford to stay at had posted a very attractive offer. I can still get it cancelled with no penalty but am considering waiting a few months just in case (always the optimistic. LOL). I was honestly looking at dates this morning...UGH! We were looking at May 13-June 3 of 2021. Happy and sad at the same time to see everyone's advice to wait.

Posted by
69 posts

April is only 6 months away. COVID-19 is spiking in Europe and in the USA. I was hoping for a May 2021 trip to Rome-Amalfi-Puglia but that seem less likely now. There was a very tempting RT flight to Rome extremely cheap, that I passed because it was non- refundable. Now I am looking at Sept 2021, which I have a sneaky feeling will become sold out (flights and hotel) due to this pent up demand created by lockdown, or maybe a moot point if we don’t have vaccine. Spanish flu lasted 3 years...

Posted by
726 posts

"Curious to know the group's thoughts on travel to Italy in Spring of 2021." Well, frankly, that would be a NO. There is no infrastructure yet for travel with out quarantine. And I know of a university study group, from Eugene Oregon, that has already paid in to a trip, in spring of 2021: I think this will be a disaster since delays are already happening on the Vac Schedual, and students are last in line. You can have the Vac, but still, we don't know about the new freak'en versions of C0V-19. This isn't going to go away for MANY years. We, personally, were looking at 2023, ... that may be realistic: Hope I'm wrong.

Posted by
259 posts

We have been planning our next trip to Italy for over a year for April 2021. Taking a transatlantic cruise to Rome, then spending another 25 days in Italy. We were notified that the cruise was cancelled on Jan 19. We didn't really think we would be able to go anyway due to Covid, but were hoping. Had to sadly cancel all our hotel reservations. Now we are back planning for April 2022. I feel Spring of 2021 is not realistic. Travel restrictions, new variants and infections, vaccine delays..... We now watch the videos I made of our last 4 trips and plan for the next again. We will all be able to go back when safe.