- On 7th July 2020
- In Italy Updates
A New Normal – Italia 2020
Will this year be the year to ‘Remember to forget’ as we go back to our ways, or will it be the year that revolutionized our whole existence to the point that we will never be as we were?
Predicting next year or even next month has become 2020’s impossible quest: in all areas of work, not just in travel, the word “uncertainty” has been used so much that it’s become “la canción del Verano!”.
So let’s focus on today’s “New Normal’’: No more hugging, No more kissing, automatically wearing our masks as we enter closed places, waiting in line in front of our favorite cafes & restaurants, continuously having our temperature measured, constantly checking that we are maintaining the distance.
“I see you survived” and “Stay Safe” are our new Greetings and Goodbyes, pretty depressing if you think about it!
And this is why people have started to bend the rules, it’s impossible not to give you a hug, I love you way too much, I’ve had an amazing time, how can I not hug you tightly, it’s been a lifetime since I last saw you, it feels we are being disrespectful, it’s an awful feeling. For crying out loud, it’s in our nature to show affection!
I’ll be heading down to see my family in Gibraltar in a few days. How am I going to resist the temptation? In what way can I show how much I love them without squeezing them with a massive hug? It’s unthinkable! How will I be able to stand firm without holding them tightly against my heart, “This is impossible!!”
We keep comparing our current situation with how our lives were, and of course Facebook sending us reminders with “On this day 1 year ago” doesn’t help either, does it? But I guess we need to find a way, don’t we? We need to surrender, embrace these new ways without feeling it is against our principles, without feeling that we are not showing affection or that maybe we are way too rigid, paranoid, or worse we are submitting to a dictatorship mentality. Truth be told there’s no cure for Covid yet, and until the dust settles, we need to accept this New Normal. So when you see me, you know how much I do love you and care for you, but expect not to receive a hug or kiss and this is in fact to show you how much I do really love you and respect you, because you know in your heart how much I want to give you a good squeeze!
Since 1 July a large number of travel restrictions have been dropped with many countries, while others are still subject to limitations – please contact us for more information on individual countries to firstname.lastname@example.org. Since we have been allowed to move between regions I have been out & about, and I must admit that I have enjoyed these gorgeous places that I never get to enjoy with good weather, as this is our peak season. While on one hand having these sites basically all to myself is truly a once in a lifetime experience, on the other hand I would never sign on this.
This global pandemic hasn’t just affected us as individuals, it has brought new trends. For example, large groups are giving way to small group, private and semi-private experiences. Even big name companies that focus on large groups are now trying to convert to completely different standards, to cater to what is expected to be a fast growing market in the coming years. I have to say that, having spent the last 19 years providing private and semi-private services, it feels like we were already ahead of our time!
But of course even with “home advantage” we have never stopped innovating and reinventing our services, exploring virtual alternatives, devising more off the beaten path itineraries. So, as I said in other articles, we are “ready and waiting’’.
But the real question is: what can our travellers expect? First and foremost let’s talk about the elephant in the Room: What if I get sick here in Italy? When planning a visit to a foreign country our recommendation is to ‘absolutely’ have travel medical insurance, this covers a wide range of issues, and will ensure you get reimbursed for your medical expenses (the amounts may vary depending on the policy so make sure to check what is included). Also, everybody has access to Healthcare here in Italy, it doesn’t matter if you are a citizen or a visitor, so you do not need to worry about being denied care. In the case of Covid-19, we have a dedicated number with people trained to assist Italian and Foreign nationals that may be experiencing symptoms (1500), who will instruct you on procedures and provide all the assistance you need. Moreover, we have your back. In our offices we are all fluent in Italian, English and Spanish, and we have professional assistance in every corner of Italy. Your safety and enjoyment are our utmost priority and we will ensure our travellers feel safe and comfortable at all times.
You are not alone.
To give you an idea of the current situation, this picture was taken just a few days ago. This is a wonderful group of Brits & Americans that live in Umbria and myself, safely enjoying the Vatican Museum. We were able to comfortably keep distances, and as you can see we didn’t have to share our space with anybody else: Truly Incredible.
So for now I leave you with these encouraging words: if your airports are open, Italy is ready to welcome you anytime. If they are not, eventually they will be, and in no time you will be here enjoying La Dolce Vita.
Ana & The Selected Tours Italy Team