Travellers who had been aboard the covid-19 stricken Braemar cruise ship, operated by Fred Olsen Cruise Lines, react as they arrive at Heathrow Airport in London on March 19, 2020, after being flown back from Cuba. - The MS Braemar had more than 1,000 people aboard including five confirmed coronavirus cases and more than 50 people in isolation due to showing flu-like symptoms. (Photo by Tolga AKMEN / various sources / AFP) (Photo by TOLGA AKMEN/Tolga Akmen/AFP via Getty Images)

Are you still waiting to return to UK from Madeira?

Thanks to John Cleary for this comment he left on my blog. I think it’s good to put in a blog post here as I know not everyone reads comments or may have missed it.

Problem No1) My last 2 flights to Funchal with BA were booked for Gatwick and changed to Heathrow nearer departure date, so please be very wary when booking Airport Hotels, Airport Parking and Taxis.

Problem No 2) If you are planning to fly back to the UK anytime soon, the Portuguese Government waived the need for a visa as those people marooned in Madeira obviously couldn’t fly home BUT if you fly back via Zurich, this waiver goes out the window, last Sat 3rd April, about 12 of us had our passports taken off us at Zurich Airport and we were marched off (when I say marched, that included wheelchairs and walking sticks) by a senior Polizia, he thought we had deliberately overstayed our time in Funchal, one spokesperson (Michelle) told them we weren’t a group of 12 and last Sat was our first opportunity to leave Madeira, he couldn’t believe that insurers wouldn’t pay out for our extended stay, felt sorry for us and stamped our passports and let us go.

Problem No 3) Two of our fellow passengers (he 81 she 78) were not allowed to fly to London from Zurich as the wifi in the airport boarding area is rubbish and they couldn’t find or access their documents on their phones, the knock on effect was they had to cancel their overnight stay at Heathrow, they had to cancel their Sun flight to Newcastle, they had to stay in a transit hotel overnight in Zurich airport, they had to rebook a flight to London on Sunday, they had to rebook a night in hotel in Heathrow and they had to rebook a flight to Newcastle on Mon, arriving home Mon night after leaving their hotel 7.45 am Sat morning.

Please Please Please print off all documentation required to get you through the airports, we had to show ours 3 times, FUN/ZUR/LON

Hi Tobi, maybe you can highlight some of what I have said on a separate Blog just in case there are still people in Madeira without visas or printed paperwork.

Apart from that Have a nice weekend. (I’m still in isolation).

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