From compulsory seat reservations to contactless car hire returns and a thorough disinfection process, rail and car hire companies across Europe are implementing new processes and safety precautions for the safety of their employees, travellers and the general public.
So if you’re planning your next trip and want to know what the car hire process and rail travel will look like post-pandemic, you're in the right place. Use the links below to learn how car hire and rail companies are responding to COVID, and read our travel tips to help you get back on the road safely.
Rail policy updates
To ensure the safety of customers and employees, rail companies are implementing policies to reduce social distancing and comply with government guidelines. Wearing a mask is compulsory at many stations and on board, and for some rail companies seat reservations are now mandatory. You can also expect to see some lounges temporarily closed and limited catering, so it’s advisable to bring your own refreshments. Policies vary by company, so click on the links below to find out more.
Car hire policy updates
To ensure the safety of customers and employees, rental companies are now implementing stringent cleaning measures such as a thorough disinfection process in between rentals. Many are also changing their policies to decrease human interaction and touch points for example social distancing at the rental desk, contactless return processes and self-serve via apps. Policies vary by company, so click on the links below to find out more.
1. IF YOU’RE UNWELL, DON’T TRAVEL
With the outbreak of Covid-19 we’ve become more aware of viruses and their incubation periods; regular flu having 2 days and Covid-19 estimated to be 14 days. With that in mind it’s important to understand that if you are feeling unwell you shouldn’t travel. Even if you feel that it’s just the beginning of something or the tail end of a bad cold. It’s best to not travel and risk spreading a virus to multiple people you may come into contact with.
2. COVER UP
Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough, and sneeze into your elbow if you don't have a tissue to hand. Ensure you wear a facemask to protect your fellow travellers and go home as soon as possible if you begin to feel sick while at work. Face coverings are now mandatory at many airports, so make sure you check the rules at your departure, transit and destination airport beforehand.
3. CLEAN UP
While many airlines are very hygienic and have upped their cleaning, there is no guarantee that every surface will get the full treatment. So carry antibacterial wipes to clean your seat armrest, tray table, seat-back pocket, air vent, seat touch screen, headrest and window blind. The same advice is sensible for other items frequently used by travellers, such as hotel television remote controls. Also make sure to clean your hands after travelling on shuttles or taxis, holding handrails and using lifts. Getting pocket sized antibacterial wipes or sanitiser can be easy to pack in your hand luggage.
4. KEEP VACCINATIONS UP-TO-DATE
While there is no vaccine for COVID-19, having all other essential vaccinations up-to-date will help you stay healthy and prevent your immune system from being compromised.
5. STAY UP-TO-DATE WITH TRAVEL ADVICE
If travelling internationally, make sure to check the FCO website for the latest information and advice. Travellers are advised to download FCBT's SAM app to stay updated on all travel disruptions. Staying informed about what is happening in the world can help prevent unnecessary travel to infectious destinations.