For many in 2021, the only safe bet for a summer holiday is staying in the UK (remembering to book restaurants ages in advance of course). Here PRs share their holiday plans which range from staying at home to venturing to the US.
Staycation for me
Shelley Frosdick, group managing director at PR agency the PHA Group: “2021 is the year of the staycation for me. Usually, I would go abroad for a long two-week holiday, but this year I will instead be breaking up my annual leave into several long-weekend stays in the UK. With all the uncertainty over international travel restrictions and the constant changes from green to amber to red, a holiday abroad is difficult to contemplate right now. But the past year has taught us all that there are a lot of wonderful places to visit in the UK! Even in our own back gardens, where I plan on using some of my holiday to take the time to relax and unwind. We just need to keep our fingers crossed for the weather. Now, pass me the rosé!”
Claire Simpson, communications consultant at marketing and communications consultancy Hard Numbers: “I’m a travel turned tech PR. So, if there’s one thing I’ve missed over the last year, it’s hopping on a plane for an impromptu weekend in Europe somewhere. Under the current guidelines, I’ve put plans for a trip to the continent on ice until the autumn. Hopefully, there’ll be greater clarity on where’s open and what’s off limits by then.
“Likewise, as a US fanatic, I’ve been itching to make up for a cancelled trip to Chicago last year. But I’ve given up on any long-haul plans until 2022. I’d rather wait until the experience in-destination is a little closer to pre-Covid times before splashing out on a big getaway. In the meantime, I’ll be looking for alternatives closer to home. So far, I’ve only made it as far as London-by-the-sea, but Devon beckons for a staycation later in the summer.”
Sally Maier-Yip, founder and managing director of marketing agency 11K Consulting: “The pandemic definitely has made us more cautious about travelling abroad. I am still hoping to spend a couple of weeks with my French husband's family in France this summer. This is hopefully a safe choice compared with the past, when I always try to visit a more distant country such as somewhere else in Asia where I come from. Having said that, with the travel limitations poised by the pandemic, I am not going to be demanding and will already be very happy if I could just get some time off and relax! The near future of travel is no longer about distance but is more about the environment or 'doing' that a place can offer, until we can travel freely internationally once again.”
Claire Blyth, managing director at design agency PR specialist Red Setter: “Since the pandemic hit, I’ve had a vacation in the diary. So far all have been cancelled (except a rainy trip to Pembrokeshire last summer) but eventually one won’t be! Just the process of booking a holiday gives me a chance to imagine myself there which is worth it in itself.
“We have a trip to California booked for August which is half work, half holiday. I can’t wait to see our clients on the West Coast again. We work with design and branding agencies worldwide, and it’s important to still meet face-to-face. Who knows if it will happen but if we can go, we will, and if it doesn’t, I feel I’ve at least mentally travelled there!
“Staycations seem expensive and crowded at the moment, so if we can’t go to California, I’ll be booking a last-minute holiday in July as soon as a country goes on the green list that looks fun.”
I’m staying in my (new) home
Ailene Barr, account director at marketing agency Barrett Dixon Bell "I was one of the many people who chose the pandemic to change jobs and move out of London. London under lockdown in a tiny flat with no garden was getting us down and outside of the city we were able to afford so much more space.
"My partner and I made the jump to Macclesfield, bought a house with a garden that gets the evening sun and I started working for BDB, a Manchester-based agency. This summer we are still planning a two-week holiday, but we’ll spend most of that gardening, drinking homemade cocktails and arguing over colour schemes. That break from work is still important, even if we can't do our usual escape to a sunny beach in southern Europe. Now we just need to find somewhere that still has garden furniture and a paddling pool for sale…"
As for me, it has to be the Isle of Wight where I have been going forever, although the island is getting rather full now that everyone else seems to have discovered it!
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