Stay Home so we can come home... that was our personal slogan during the height of the COVID19 pandemic.
We were booked to fly from New Zealand to the UK in May after two years living on the road, overcoming a strenuously tight backpacker budget and all the possible twists and turns that an adventure like world travel throws at you (think passing out on remote asian islands and personalised nurse escorted ferry rides to a stint in hospital).
What we didn't predict was a global pandemic closing borders and pathways home.
Through sheer good spirit we reached a time we had begun to wonder might never come, lockdown eased and (albeit limited) aircraft took to the skies again.
With almost 2,000 GBP invested in flights which had been cancelled, our travel agent gave us little choice to accept a credit note by way of refund.
This covered our new flights home, booked for November 2020 when our visa is set to expire.
...then the travel agent filed for insolvency.
...and the airline informed us the agent had not transferred the fees to cover our new flights.
...at this point sheer good spirit has expired and we find ourselves with no flights home nor a travel agent to request a refund from.
Our booking was made in NZ, and the travel agency is not recognised by any financial protection board like that of ATOL in the UK. Many insurance providers also finding loop holes with COVID.
Simply. Our money is gone.
And so, with a fresh dose of good spirit we begin a new adventure of finding flights home...
Any donations will be gratefully returned in the form of a socially distanced catch up when we eventually make it home, over coffee of (more likely needed) something stronger.