Unfortunately, you don't get to see Emperor Penguins on this tour. They are only there during the extreme cold months when tours do not operate. You will see Adelie, Chinstrap, and Gentoo penguins which are great as well. I did this tour in December 2018; it was excellent!
Cathy, I highly recommend the BBC production of Seven Worlds One Planet, series One Episode 6. Antarctica,to get your fill, including Leopard Seals. If you are lucky, after your tour, Tauck may send you a DVD of the series. They have sent us several expensive DVD of this type of series and Ken Burns ones when we have returned from a relevant tour.
The equivalent date for 2021 is the only one that isn’t sold out for the entire 2021. Hurry and book Cathy before everyone from this December beats you to it!
If Tauck has sent the same email to the January people, might they want to book next December instead?
Waiting for Tauck to cancel? That's a hard thing to figure out when that occurs. I know British has heard from Tauck months in advance that a tour has been cancelled. For out Egypt: Jewel of the Nile tour starting October 8th we haven't heard from Tauck. Our final payment is due this coming Monday, August 24th. I will call them Friday, tomorrow, if they don't call me today.
Cathy - I hope your cancel or no cancel information from Tauck is more like British's than mine.
Also, all of the corresponding dates for our Egypt tour for 2021 are already sold out. We're on the list for 2022 dates.
Amazing how fast trips are filling up. We just added the Normandy/Brittany tour for next year and got the last spots. Room in the small group starts but not too surprising since the upcharge is $1200 per person.
I think the issues will be with Argentina not Ponant. Latest update was August 6th
International Parental Child Abduction
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Travel.State.Gov > Travel Advisories > Argentina Travel Advisory
Argentina Travel Advisory
August 6, 2020Argentina - Level 4: Do Not Travel
Do not travel to Argentina due to COVID-19.
Read the Department of State’s COVID-19 page before you plan any international travel.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 3 Travel Health Notice for Argentina due to COVID-19.
Travelers to Argentina may experience border closures, airport closures, travel prohibitions, stay at home orders, business closures, and other emergency conditions within Argentina due to COVID-19. Visit the Embassy’s COVID-19 page for more information on COVID-19 in Argentina.
Read the country information page.
If you decide to travel to Argentina:
See the U.S. Embassy's web page regarding COVID-19.
Visit the CDC’s webpage on Travel and COVID-19.
Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive Alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
Follow the Department of State on Facebook and Twitter.
Review the Crime and Safety Report for Argentina.
U.S. citizens who travel abroad should always have a contingency plan for emergency situations. Review the Traveler’s Checklist.
Last Update: Reissued with updates to COVID-19 information.
BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) - Argentina on Monday banned all commercial flight ticket sales until September, one of the toughest coronavirus travel bans in the world, prompting an industry outcry that the new measure will put too much strain on airlines and airports.
FILE PHOTO: Aerolineas Argentinas' passenger planes are seen parked on the runway of the Jorge Newbery airport, as the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues, in Buenos Aires, Argentina April 21, 2020. Picture taken April 21, 2020. REUTERS/Miguel Lo Bianco/File Photo
While the country’s borders have been closed since March, the new decree goes further by banning until Sept. 1 the sale and purchase of commercial flights to, from or within Argentina. The decree, signed by the National Civil Aviation Administration, said it was “understood to be reasonable” to implement the restrictions, without elaborating.
Many countries in South America, including Ecuador, Peru and Colombia, have banned all commercial flights for the time being, but none have extended their timeline as far out as Argentina. The United States, Brazil and Canada have imposed restrictions, but not outright bans.
“The problem was that airlines were selling tickets without having authorization to travel to Argentine soil,” a spokesman for President Alberto Fernandez said.
The ban would put a strain on LATAM Airlines Group , which has a significant domestic operation in Argentina, and has been seeking help from multiple governments. Argentina’s largest carrier, Aerolineas Argentinas, is state-owned and could survive as long as the government is willing to subsidize it.
The ban would also affect smaller ultra low-cost carriers that have grown rapidly in Argentina with the support of former President Mauricio Macri, such as FlyBondi domestically, and SkyAirlines and JETSmart, which fly internationally
I'm very impressed that testing and laboratory capabilities exist on the ship. As a precautionary measure, I would wear a mask at all times except when eating and in my cabin. Hopefully the masks will be mandatory on shore excursions.
cathyandsteveI think it's great you received a quick response; however, the waiting game continues...ugh
Cathy, I feel so bad that you have to wait and wait. The decision will really be out of the hands of Tauck, it will be the rules of Argentina who May continue to ban Americans Into their country. Unfortunately, it will also be Ponant who judging by what Tauck is experiencing with them with previous tours that Ponant have canceled, is that Ponant are canceling more last minute. Their Covid preventions read beautifully yet the Paul Gaugin ship had Covid on what I think was one of it’s first return tours. I would actually feel safe on the ship because I hope I know how to avoid the pitfalls that others have even when they are wearing masks. People must learn not to mess with their masks or put them face down first on tables and all those other unsafe practices. And yet...This week, I saw friends on my deck, I served social distance lunch. One hugged me, I was not happy, she has just been in hospital with an unknown illness. Next week they are taking me out to lunch for my birthday. I have only eaten out once for a quick lunch since March. One wanted us to travel in the same car, I said no, I’m not popular for that, but half an hour In a car so close, no not for me.
Tauck emailed us yesterday to tell us we have a Dreamsaver that was supposed to expIre in December. We had no idea, we were under the impression It was until the end of 2021. Now they are extending December to June 2021. So now we have to decide which of our already long booked two trips we want to put our two Dreamsaver each amounts together, our April or July 2021 tours. I’m not sure either will go. Not being political, but some of this depends on the outcome of the election.
Cathy - We are booked at a resort in Jamaica in April 2021. We received information from the resort, just this week, about the current Jamaica restrictions. Yes Jamaica is welcoming tourists, but they aren't allowed to leave the hotel property in which they are staying (per the information available on Jamaica tourist board). When you go to the JTB site it says you have to get permission to visit and that you'll be restricted to the hotel property. This is what we received from the resort we're booked at.
Like most countries around the world, Jamaica has taken proactive steps to contain the spread of COVID-19. Details about these can be found on the Jamaica Tourist Board website at jtbonline.org.
Our resort is an all-inclusive resort, so we might go even if the above restrictions are still in place, but we may cancel because we usually, even when at an all-inclusive resort, like to do some off property excursions.
If you have different information about Jamaica, I'd love to see it. Thanks.
I always thought that Jamaica was one of those places it has always been advisable not to go off resort.
Cathy - Thanks
British - There are places in Jamaica where that is true and perhaps renting a car there wouldn't be advised, but I'm referring to off-site excursions offered through the resort. Something like Climbing Dunn River Falls or a Zip-lining Adventure. The excursion company picks you up at the resort and returns you to the resort. All perfectly safe and lots of fun.
Cathy - Here's the stuff that our resort sent to us. Sounds like this is different than your information.
Additionally, the government expanded safety measures earlier this month to include:
The closure of some beaches and rivers, which does not include those in the Montego Bay area where AMResorts®-branded properties are located, meaning guests can enjoy sun-soaked beaches in front of the resort just steps away from their elegant accommodations.
A requirement that guests at any hotel or resort remain on property during their time in the country, meaning that excursions and off-property attractions are not available right now. However, with world-class spas, gourmet dining, unlimited premium drinks and a wide range of activities, water sports, fitness options and entertainment, AMResorts®-branded properties have everything guests need to stay as busy as they like.
The government has not provided a time frame as to how long these additional measures may be in place, and more information is available at opm.gov.jm.
I think it would be helpful to go thru Tauck on this one, Anything that Ponant stipulates will be dealt with by Tauck, so if it Is to do with a Covid test,Tauck will have it figured out. Tauck is now a huge Ponant customer and Ponant can’t afford to mess them around. I’m getting a pre surgery Covid test this coming week, I’m curious to know how it feels and if I’m positive.
I’m also pretty sure that the reason Tauck are so late canceling Ponant tours is that they have to wait to see what Ponant is doing. On line, Ponant is encouraged people to book tours and talking lenient changes. I think they are fine if you want to change your tour date but not is you just want to cancel which is why it’s good booking through Tauck. Tauck has a much better price deal too. We looked into booking tours directly with Ponant which is why we get their emails....to places Tauck don’t go, but put off their prices and policies
British good luck with your surgery and test. I had a sore throat 2 weeks ago with no fever but went for a test anyway, it took 3 days to get the result which was negative.
Thanks Gladys, nothing life threatening. When you go in hospital or are having surgery, the Covid test is instant. Know of two people who were tested on emergency admissions and one who had surgery last week.
Cathy, will PM you in the next couple of days, lots going on here at present
I just talked with Tauck about several subjects but asked about the covid test requirement for Ponant. They said we would be advised ‘if’ there is any such requirement for ‘Tauck’ guests at an appropriate time. She said, “We are booked with Tauck, not with Ponant.” Ponant has a similar point of view. Even though I’ve done three trips on Ponant with Tauck, we are not considered Ponant ‘past’ cruisers.
I’m wondering whether it would make more sense to rebook this tour for 2022 not 2021 once Tauck cancel this December tour.
It’s becoming clear that things are not going to be anywhere nearer to normal until the end of 2021.
The only new tour we have booked is for September 2022.
Booking this special tour a further year out could save the disappointment this time next year if things are no better than they are now. It’s looking more and more like Argentina is going to be the problem. As long as you can stand upright on ice, using hiking sticks, it’s not a strenuous tour and could be put off for a couple of years.
News about Antarctica https://my.xfinity.com/articles/news-general/20200914/AS--New-Zealand-Antarctic-First-Flight-2804
I just booked our backup plan in the event our January Antarctica falls apart. We will be going back to K&T June 26, 2021. The itinerary has been changed a little bit, but the animals are always different. There’s a new hotel in Arusha.
We are headed back to Yosemite in a couple weeks ... wildfires permitting. Using two air purifiers in the house right now.
Belay my last ... the Yosemite trip just went up in smoke ... pun intended.
Sealord...I went in T&K for the first time in July 2019 (was that 100 years ago?? ). And I keep thinking of going again. Remind me: when did you go? For us, July was fantastic: no bugs, no rain and we even saw The Migration!
I then looked more carefully at the 2021 trip itinerary (itinerary for 2022 isn’t listed yet). There are some other difference between 2019 and 2021 besides the new hotel in Arusha: flight rather than drive to Serengeti from Ngorongoro Crater, 3 nites instead of 2 at Four Seasons). I await your impressions in 2021; I’m looking at 2022. I have a 1 month trip set (again) for a 2 week road trip from Lisbon thru Southern Spain—to a Tangier and finally meet our Tauck Morocco tour. I’m hoping this works for us in October/November 2021. I’m getting rather optimistic...
did K and T in 2007 and last December. We were very disappointed with the Four Seasons
While I enjoyed the luxury of the 4 Seasons, I was there for the animals. We had some fabulous sightings in the Serengeti (with a bonus unexpected drive which only 4 of us took part in) — I just hope there are as many (or more) game drives as in the past. I don’t want more time (actually I don’t want ANY time) to luxuriate at the pool or spa.
Funny, comments about game drives in an Antarctica thread. Guess there really is global warming
Far less game drives this past time,
Something for everyone I guess. We like the Four Seasons, and expect there will be more game drives from there this time. On our two previous K&T’s we had a similar number of game drives each time. We did skip one offered night game drive because we had already been on the ‘road’ for twelve hours that day. We never thought we had excessive ‘dead’ time. The first trip we had a lot of elephants at the Four Seasons, but the second time was a very ‘wet’ year and there were no elephants at the water hole.
I will answer any further questions on the K&T thread.
Cathy - Looks like things in Argentina, w/r to COVID, have deteriorated. Previously they had indicated they might open up flights on 9/20. Now, per the IATA website (see below), it simply says passengers are not allowed to enter and flights are suspended.