With the coronavirus lockdown levels gradually being eased across the UK, the subject of staycations has never been so topical – but we feel some thought is needed before blowing the dust from your home from home and hitting the road.
After a very difficult three months for very many people in the UK and around the world, we are the first ones to say that a campervan is a great way to feel freedom once more and a fantastic way to spend your tourism pounds, however, there are already signs of caution in some rural areas that an influx of road travelling tourists could raise the risk of coronavirus cases being brought into their communities.
Of course we want to see everyone out in their campervans, supporting the UK economy and helping businesses and people across the whole of the UK to recover from the financial impact of the coronavirus lockdown, but we urge you to do so with some careful thought for the places and people you plan to visit.
Many rural communities will have seen hardly any, or indeed no cases of the disease, so the thought of city based people, where the perception of some rural communities may be that coronavirus was rife, could lead to a level of concern and worry – it’s important to remember that the local health service in remote rural communities can be very limited and the nearest hospital or indeed GP is often many miles away.
Many people in rural communities will undoubtedly welcome back tourists, but some others may show understandable concern. Staycations will be an important element of helping the economy on its path to recovery, but we must respect one another along the way and we feel that the campervan community has a vital part to play.
We would urge all campervanners to go out and enjoy their freedom, but to respect the feelings of people in the places they visit and tread carefully and cautiously.
Here are some things we’d like to suggest you do!
Respect all the key points about reducing the possible transmission of Covid-19 – in addition to the national or devolved administrations’ guidelines, consider wearing a mask in a public place when it’s clear that it makes local people feel more comfortable.
Shop local – as you’re there to enjoy the local scenery and atmosphere then try to buy your food locally as you go. Resist the temptation to stock up a major supermarket before you leave home! Support the local shops and sample the local produce!
Book ahead – although virtually all campsites will be open, many will be running at reduced capacity, so it’s probably wise to book ahead. Wild camping in Scotland is always an option, but remember that some local people may be wary about you camping outside of designated campsites, so pick your places to stop with great care and be prepared to readily move on if asked.
Bring your own facilities – not every campsite will have their washroom and toilet facilities open, so bring everything you need. Not leaving any mess behind at the place you stay is so important. It’s vital that we are all responsible campervanners, as bad behaviour now could taint reputations for years to come.
Enjoy yourself!! – 2020 has been a tough year for very many people and very many businesses. Although the coronavirus pandemic is not yet behind us we feel there’s now breathing space to relax a little and enjoy life again within the new set of social and behavioural boundaries.
If you or anyone you are with show Covid symptoms then isolate immediately – please don’t head to the local rural GP surgery or hospital unless it’s an absolute emergency. Call NHS 111 or visit the NHS website. If you can safely make your way back home then that’s probably your best option.
Very many thanks and happy travels!