Your Health & Safety

For 40 years, we've been crafting journeys that provide an easy, safe and accessible way to experience the best that our world has to offer. While the COVID-19 pandemic presents new challenges and has put a pause on our globetrotting for now, we are looking to the future and doubling down on our commitments to keep you safe and healthy while you explore. More than ever, you'll appreciate having our global team of travel experts looking out for you.

Read on to learn about how we're responding to the pandemic, all the ways that we're keeping you safe and healthy, and how to do your part. And find out what we mean by Flexible, Safe, Confident Travel.

Peggy M. Goldman
Peggy M. Goldman
President

How We’re Protecting You

Protecting the health and safety of our travelers has been our highest priority for 40 years. The coronavirus pandemic presents new challenges, and we're enhancing our protocols for every package to meet those challenges.

While we don’t require the COVID-19 vaccination, all travelers will be required to present one or both of the following depending on their destinations entry protocols:

  • Proof of the full COVID-19 vaccination given at least 14 days prior to the tour
  • A Negative PCR Test Result, taken within 72 hours prior to the start of the tour

Travelers will be responsible for preparing for travel by acquiring all necessary tests and documentation to comply with regulations. Booked passengers will receive details to assist in understanding the requirements.

  • We've lowered deposits and implemented new Carefree Booking policies on most packages that allow you to book with confidence, knowing you can modify your departure date or destination or even cancel if you don't feel comfortable traveling.
  • On our group tours, we are adjusting the size of our groups and motor coaches to provide additional spacing.
  • We are redesigning many aspects of our itineraries to avoid large gatherings and crowded spaces, and to schedule visits to popular sites during off-peak times.
  • On our motor coaches, you will have assigned seating on each coach throughout your itinerary.
  • All vehicle surfaces will be cleaned and sanitized each day.
  • All restaurants will serve plated meals instead of offering buffets.
  • All rooms and cabins will be sanitized and deep-cleaned prior to check-in, and housekeeping staff will wear masks and gloves.
  • All porters, drivers, hotel staff, and tour representatives will wear a face mask and gloves when handling your luggage.
  • Our tour staff will wear face masks and other appropriate personal protective equipment and regularly wash their hands and/or use hand sanitizer.
  • All travelers will be required to wear face masks while touring public places, particularly indoors, and on our motor coaches. While you should bring your own face masks and hand sanitizer, we will have both available.
  • On itineraries with tour guide listening systems (headsets), the headset will be sterilized and sanitized, and you will use the same one throughout your trip.
  • For the safety of you and others, including local populations, and to comply with local regulations, closures, or other unexpected circumstances, we may adjust your itinerary before or during travel. If it is necessary to omit certain sites or experiences, we will do our best to substitute other, similarly rewarding ones.
  • If you or any other traveler exhibits symptoms of illness, we will promptly seek a medical evaluation, and assess whether any travelers should be isolated from the group.
  • In the unlikely event that your trip is interrupted, our team in the US and in destination will help modify your travel arrangements and get you home as soon and as safely as possible.

What You Can Do

Together we can stay safe and healthy! To make sure your travel experience is exciting, enjoyable and safe, we need your help. A full list of guidelines and tips, specific to your tour or package, will be included with your final documents.

  • Wear a face mask in public places wherever possible, including in airports and on airplanes and motor coaches. We strongly recommend you bring your own supply of face masks and hand sanitizer.
  • Do your best to minimize your contact with people outside your household for two weeks prior to departure, to minimize your chances of becoming ill.
  • If you're not feeling well or are exhibiting symptoms of any illness, please do not travel unless your doctor says that it's okay. (If you have a fever, many airlines, airports, and/or customs officials may prevent your boarding or entry.)
  • While on tour, please defer to your tour leader, guide or manager. They are there for your safety and wellbeing, and to ensure the journey goes smoothly for everyone, and know the local customs & regulations.
  • Be flexible and open-minded! While most itineraries operate as scheduled, international travel is always a bit unpredictable, especially now. On the off chance that it is necessary to adjust your itinerary, you'll enjoy your trip much more if you roll with the punches.
  • To protect against the unexpected, purchase a travel protection plan to protect you and your travel investment, including coverage for emergency medical coverage abroad.

Suspended Packages

We have suspended all programs departing now through June 2021. If you are booked on one of these departures, our travel specialists will contact you to help reschedule your trip for a future date, with no fees or penalties assessed by Friendly Planet. If you prefer to cancel, we can issue a refund, minus a $99 future travel credit (and any premiums paid for our travel protection plan). If we haven't been able to reach you, please contact us.

Please note that if you booked prior to Mar 19, 2020, and we issued flight tickets for your trip, there may be limitations on your rebooking options or refund. In most cases, we can transfer the value of your flights to a future trip, but within the airlines' rebooking policies, which may require your new trip to be on the same airline and to occur within a certain amount of time. Ask us for more information.

Frequently Asked Questions

Check out these answers to our travelers' most frequently asked questions.
* Advertised prices may include an "Instant Savings" discount and/or sale discount, available for a limited time. Prices reflect these discounts. Advertised prices are per person, based on double occupancy; single occupancy rooms may be available for an additional charge. Advertised prices are the best available based on the least expensive travel dates, departure city, and other options, and do not include optional excursions or other optional items. Your total price will vary based upon the dates, flights, and other options you select during the booking process. For packages including flights, prices include Airline Taxes, Fees & Sept. 11th Security Fee, but do not include excess baggage fees or advance seat reservations. Prices and availability subject to change. More about our prices.

† The Carefree Booking policy is not travel insurance. With our Carefree Booking policy, if you book one of our scheduled departures and decide later not to travel for any reason, you can transfer all payments you've made excluding the cost of any issued flight tickets, towards another available departure date or package, with no change fees or penalties. Alternately, you can choose to receive a future travel credit for all payments made, excluding the cost of any issued flight tickets; or you can choose to receive a refund for that same amount, minus a $99 per person future travel credit. You may use these credits anytime and they do not expire, but some restrictions apply. Travel protection premiums may be credited to your new tour provided: no claim is filed; (no vendor penalties such as Air, sea or rail etc have been incurred); and your new trip departs within 1 year of the cancellation of your original tour. Valid for bookings made on or after March 19, 2020. Offer may not be available on all packages, including private and custom group departures and Biblical Journeys. Changes or cancellations requested after final payment due date are subject to our regular change and cancellation fees & policies. For more information and some additional restrictions, see our terms & conditions.

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