Saturday, November 27, 2021

Changing Dates From April '22 to September '22

 They Say That Change Is A Good Thing

Yes, we have decided to postpone our trip until September 2022. So, the last 5 months of getting closer to our April date left us 5 months from our departure. Kind of like it wasn't real, at all. Now, here we are 10 months away from going again. Five months forward; five months backward. Just a bit frustrating and disappointing, but we have extended the trip with Plan B to 24 days from 21 days. So, we get 3 more days in Italy - that can't be a bad thing, can it? 

What has been added to our to our itinerary? A two to three day side trip to Pedavena where my great grandparents and grandparents left in 1906 to seek a better life in the United States. I had thought that to get to Pedavena would take too much extra time before when were trying to trim the days down from 30 to 21, but putting off the trip  (and the overall influence on COVID-19 on life) prompted us to rethink that and making it to Pedavena now seemed necessary. Plus Pedavena and Feltre (where we will stay for 2 nights) is in The Dolomites, a region of Italy, where we have been to only briefly on a day trip from Milan to Varenna and Bellagio on Lake Como in 2016. 

The apartment we have reserved in Feltre in the Dolomites.

Because of the ease of finding, reserving and changing lodging reservations on, we have already secured confirmation on all of our lodging for September/October 2022. My website or I receive no compensation or benefit from mentioning in these posts, but I have to say, really works well for this amateur. I would suggest that anyone planning an extended trip or just a weekend away in the US should try It has saved me hours of time and hundreds of dollars just in the last 3 months of visiting seaport towns in New England.

The only difficulties so far were rebooking hotels/apartments that were not reserved with I was able to cancel the reservations, but not change the dates readily. Our lodging on our first night after our flight was at Charley Hotel in Milan which is very close to the train station, Milano Centrale, but they are not accepting reservations for 10 months out ( we'll wait until reservations open again). The other was in Bologna where upon cancelation, the VRBO owner let us know that he, most likely, wouldn't be renting out our favorite apartment in Bologna in 2022 to tourists due to cancelations and uncertainty caused by COVID-19. We had stayed there on our last trip in 2016.

Charley Hotel in Milan

Milano Centrale train station

Once again, I turned to to find another suitable self-catering apartment and was fortunate to find the "Tilia" apartment, a much bigger and more elegant place (not that we look for "elegant") close  to the center of of the city.

Balcony at "Tilia" apartment in Bologna

One of the bedrooms at "Tilia"

I now have completed all of the reservation changes (except for the first night and the last night in Milan) for September / October 2022.  Our itinerary will be:

 1- Milan* (1 night)
2 - Verona (5 nights)
3 - Feltre / Pedavena (2 nights)
4 - Venice* (2 nights)
5 - Bologna* (5 nights)
6 - Cortona (4 nights)
7 - Florence* (3 nights)
8 - Milan* (1 night)
* (have also visited on previous trips)

Still to be planned are day trips from Verona, Cortona and Bologna.  All transportation will be on comfortable and convenient Italian trains and occasionally on city or inter-city buses.

Debbie waiting for a train - 2016

We still need to book train tickets for longer distances which I will book on the Trenitalia site when the dates open up and our flights which will do in June or July '22.

Saturday, November 20, 2021

Reconsidering Our Dates for Our April 2022 trip

With all of our lodging booked, mostly through for our 21 day April 2022 trip to Italy, we have begun to reassess the the situation with COVID19 in the world today as cases and deaths are rising rapidly in Europe and the US now in November 2021. Safety is becoming more of a concern for us once again. Even though we are both fully vaccinated, including booster shots, we still are more concerned than when we started this process of planning our trip in June.

We still have plenty of time to cancel or change our lodging reservations (until the beginning of April 2022), but we don't want to inconvenience the owners of the apartments and hotel rooms we have reserved in Verona, Venice, Cortona, Bologna, Milan and Florence.  The earlier we cancel, the more likely it will be that they can still rent the apartments out to others for our April time slots. Also, the  earlier we do that, the more likely we can find (or re-book the same) other lodging for a trip later in 2022 like in September or October if conditions start to improve again in the summer. This is a difficult decision for us to make, but we probably will cancel / reschedule our lodging soon. 

Fortunately, we haven't made any flight or train reservations at this time and we feel it's best to plan these things well in advance, so now would be a good time to be considering a trip in October 2022. Of course, it's disappointing to feel it necessary to make these changes, but we are hopeful that we'll be able to use our same itinerary for the fall as we we did for the spring. The silver lining may be that there are usually more festivals in the fall than in the spring, which will be exciting. Although, we were looking forward to seeing Italy in the spring because we have been there in in the fall and the summer before, including in the months of June, July, September, October and November, so adding April & May would have been nice. There really is no time that we wouldn't love Italy (we would probably avoid it in the month of August, though).