Itching to go on vacation? Here's what you can do for some safe summer fun
LONDON, ONT. -- With many regions still facing COVID-19 restrictions, people itching to go on vacation are wondering what options they do have for some safe summer fun.
In March of 2020, a travel advisory was put into effect for non-essential travel in Canada.
Kelly Balderston, vacation travel specialist at Robert Q Travel Centre in London, says the agency is still dealing with trip cancellations and changes.
“We’re looking at a lot of people who will have credits for the next couple of years to go to future travel…It has been something we would have never anticipated, it was just unreal.”
After being in and out of lockdown, many people are itching to get out of their cities and onto some sand overseas.
“Even though (our family) have never been out of the country together it still feels kind of restricting not to be able to, but it will nice to finally have that option,” says Lima, a London resident.
Balderston says in her work experience, people are booking vacation packages well in advance.
“Right now it is fairly quiet but what we are seeing is a huge increase for travel in 2022 and 2023.”
Balderston says the travel centre is also receiving lots of inquiries for travel during Christmas holidays in 2021.
“Canadians love to travel…they’re just waiting for that time. When people are booking an all-inclusive it is a little more last-minute, but we are getting inquires for next Christmas. I think it's because people know they can’t get away this summer or fall.”
Andy Skelton, a London resident, says he is fine with skipping a vacation abroad.
“We’re happy that everything seems to be on the way out, it will be better over the summer and we look forward to just being out and about in town."
Another place to go out and about this summer is to a provincial park, but those too are seeing an increase in demand.
Megan Loucks, discovery leader at Pinery Provincial Park near Grand Bend, says Ontario's parks had a record number of visitors last year.
“With over 11 million visits for day use and camping, and since the beginning of 2021, we’ve seen a 100 per cent increase in visitations.”
The Ontario government has said it will postpone March Break for students and teachers for a month.
Campsites like those at Pinery Provincial Park still have openings for March Break, which is being held in April, but Loucks encourages campers to book their day and overnight camp passes sooner rather than later.
“Specifically at Pinery Park, we’ve experienced high visitations. We are expecting campers to come early spring and extend their stay into the late fall.”
Another alternative for some summer fun, is to get your hands on an RV trailer.
Salesperson at Can-Am RV Center in London, Dan Meyer, has been selling RVs for the last seven years.
Meyer says the pandemic has increased people's interest in buying a set of wheels of their own.
“We are appointment only and our phones have been through the roof.”
Meyer suspects that families are turning to RVs as a safe and intimate way to travel.
“Now with the use of the RV, you’re with your own family, it's a lot safer form of travel and I think going forward it's going to become more popular.”
Meyer encourages those interested in purchasing an RV to do so sooner rather than later due to manufacturing limitations amidst COVID-19.