I had read about this trip in the news when it was still in the planning stages and it has since become a reality. If you live in the Atlantic bubble and want some sunshine this winter, you now have the option of booking an all-inclusive vacation to Cuba where you’ll be joined only be fellow residents of the bubble.
14 Day Self-Isolation Required Upon Return
Although there was talk of this Cuba trip being a sort of extension of the Atlantic bubble, I’m not sure that was ever the intention. If the mandatory self-isolation period remains in effect when the trips take place, you will still have to comply when you return. The “bubble” aspect apparently refers to the travelling group which will depart and return to Halifax after staying together at a resort in Cuba. No off-property excursions are permitted.
Anyone booking this package must be a permanent resident of Atlantic Canada and the group will not be sharing the resort with any other guests. (If I read the description correctly, the resort will not even be open to any guests at all until the first group of Atlantic Canadians arrive.)
For complete information about these week packages go to the Hot Deals page of Absolute Travel Specialists, the Halifax travel agency behind this idea.
The name of the resort is Playa Coco Hotel and two departures are available:
February 12-19, 2021
March 19-26, 2021
These are adults only trips. Flights are via Air Canada Vacations charters. $1499 per person double/triple occupancy or $1675 single occupancy with COVID-19 medical insurance included.
A Few Thoughts
Well, I am not a beach resort person so this is not a trip I would ever book. So, I’m not sufficiently familiar with typical all-inclusive rates to accurately judge the cost of these packages. And of course the price must be evaluated in light of the unusual restrictions/protections involved.
I can see how a trip carefully planned to limit potential exposure could give people some peace of mind. Whether in airports or at the destination, exposure to other travellers from various places including possible COVID-19 hot spots is a strong deterrent to travel.
The chief medical officer of health in Nova Scotia discourages non-essential travel outside the bubble and the Canadian government’s travel advisory remains in effect. Despite these important cautions, I assume there was enough demand to convince the travel agency to move forward and offer these packages to Cuba.
Aside from any interactions with resort employees, you will only be around people from the same neck of the woods. Since the flight departs from Halifax I suspect the majority of guests will be from Nova Scotia. I wonder if that means that within a few minutes you’ll run across someone who once worked with your second cousin or taught your neighbour in school or used to play cards with your grandmother. It would be a unique experience. I expect this group would not likely include many “how ’bout we go to Cuba?” folks, but instead be mainly of the “I must escape this hellish winter” sort.
While I definitely won’t be one of them, I hope this travel opportunity gives a bit of joy to a few Atlantic Canadians who are keenly interested in a southern getaway.