New rules for flying with kids to South Africa apply from 1 Oct 2014 (Postponed)

  • 09 Sep, 2014
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south-africa

Update 17 September 2014: It has been announced that the new rules for flying with children to and from South Africa have been postponed from 1 October 2014 to June 2015.

With several Airport Parking Shop team members heading off to South Africa later this year, we thought we’d remind our users that new rules of travelling with children will apply from 1 October 2014.

If you are flying to, from or transiting through South Africa with a child under 18 years of age, you will have to adhere to these rules.

Both parents travelling with a child who is under 18

You must produce an unabridged birth certificate of each child which shows details of the parents of the child, as well as a child’s valid passport. The birth certificate has to be full and shows details of the parents of the child.

One parent travelling with a child who is under 18

Where only one parent is accompanying the child, the following has to be presented:

• an unabridged birth certificate (full);
• consent in the form of an affidavit from the other parent registered as a parent on the birth certificate, authorising them to enter or depart from South Africa with the child;
• a court order granting them full parental responsibilities and rights or legal guardianship or where applicable, a death certificate of the other parent registered as a parent of the child on the birth certificate.

You should travel with these documents in case you are asked to provide them. Read More

Flight delayed or cancelled? Brits fail to claim their dues

  • 01 Sep, 2014
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Airport International Departures Live Departures

As you will know if you have read our blog post on the subject, EU law states that passengers can claim compensation for overbooked, delayed or cancelled flights.

It seems, however, that not all of us who are entitled to claim actually do so. In fact, according to German compensation claims firm Flightright, there is more than half a billion pounds unclaimed by some 1.6 million travellers in the UK.

Their figures are based on an evaluation of 3 million flights, and it is not just Brits who are proving to be unsavvy travellers. German passengers have failed to claim over £468 million, Spanish over £400 million and French over £355 million. Passengers have up to six years to make their claim so it is not too late.

A few weeks ago, the tail end of Hurricane Bertha caused misery for travellers and many flights were cancelled or delayed. One passenger who had come down to London for the weekend and was due to return to Leeds from Heathrow on the Sunday evening could not fly home until the next day. He was unaware that he could claim compensation, wrongly believing that because the airline had told him of the cancellation on the Saturday and were putting him on the Monday flight at no extra charge they had done their bit. He also assumed that bad weather would constitute an exceptional circumstance, meaning that the airline had no obligation to pay him compensation. Read More

Make destination research a part of your holiday planning

  • 15 Aug, 2014
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camo Jamaica

Heading off to Jamaica for a holiday soon? Did you know that camouflage clothing is illegal in Jamaica and Barbados?

A recent research by online travel agent Sunshine.co.uk revealed that Britons spend on average 32 work hours planning, researching, booking and talking about their holidays. And this is just at work; for most of us holiday planning continues during lunch break, on the commute home, at weekends and pretty much occupies all our thoughts right to the point when we board the plane.

The planning itself, however, to most of us entails budgeting, comparing accommodation, airfares, transfers, car hire, local sightseeing spots, kids facilities, spas and the ins and outs of half-board /full-board menu; finding out local customs and laws takes somewhat a back seat.

The FCO’s Know Before You Go campaign urges travellers to research local laws and customs of their destination before they travel, to avoid misunderstandings or simply stay out of trouble with local law enforcement.

According to the FCO’s new study, while 70% of people believe that researching local laws and customs would make their holiday more enjoyable, less than 50% would actually make it part of their preparations when visiting somewhere new. Read More

Jet lag demystified: symptoms and prevention

  • 01 Aug, 2014
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Timezone Jet Lag

Jet lag, or desynchronosis to give it its proper medical name, is a physiological condition resulting from a disturbance to the body clock when travelling rapidly from one time zone to another. Passengers travelling by ship are less likely to be affected as their body clocks have longer to adjust, but for travellers flying across different time zones it can be a real problem and the further you go the worse the effects are.

It varies from person to person but jet lag usually lasts several days and as a rough guide you can expect the disruption to last one day per time zone crossed. This means that if you are spending a fortnight in New Zealand, you could well spend the majority of your holiday feeling lethargic and not quite with it.

The body’s circadian rhythm (or body clock) is set to our local time so that we feel tired at night, alert in the morning and ready to eat at set times of the day. Travelling east to west or vice versa means that we cross various time zones resulting in us either having difficulty sleeping when we have travelled west to east, or wanting to sleep early in the evening when we have travelled east to west. It is easier to delay our bedtime than make ourselves sleep when we are not tired so, in general, flying east to west is easier to cope with.

Who does it affect?

People who have a very rigid routine for going to bed and getting up in the morning will find it harder to adjust to a different time zone. Conversely babies and young children who are used to falling asleep during the day will find it easier. Jet lag seems to hit the over 60s hard, although the reason for this is not known. Read More

Travel related DVTs – risks, prevention, advice

  • 22 Jul, 2014
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Deep vein thrombosis

DVT, or deep-vein thrombosis, is a condition which occurs when a blood clot forms in a deep leg vein (typically the calf or thigh). If the clot stays put, stuck to the wall of the vein, it causes redness and swelling to the area. But if part of it breaks off it can travel to the lungs (pulmonary embolus) and cause serious illness or even death. It can also be a contributory cause of a stroke or heart attack. Unfortunately some DVTs cause no symptoms, for instance in the pelvis, and the first that is known of the condition can be a pulmonary embolism.

Why does it happen when flying?

Travel-related DVT is caused by sitting still for long periods of time in cramped conditions. The blood flow slows down and the blood collects in the legs when in a sitting position. Slow blood flow is more likely to cause a clot to form. A “long period of time” is considered to be four hours or more, and DVTs can be caused not only by flying but also travelling by car, coach or train. Read More