Paris awaits, but is my passport still valid? Is a 10am hotel check-out too early? Am I too old to hire a car in America? The Holiday Guru tackles travellers’ questions

  • READ MORE:  Inside the British Airways course for people with a fear of flying

The Holiday Guru is here to answer travellers’ questions. 

This week he tackles queries around post-Brexit passport rules, age limits for car hire in America, 10am hotel kick-outs, family travel insurance, and more…  

Q. My passport runs out in October. However, it was issued exactly ten years ago this month, so I’m worried I will not be able to use it to go to EU countries. Is this so? I was hoping to visit Paris soon.

Emma Hayward, Basingstoke

A. EU rules state that you must have a passport issued within the last ten years on the date of your departure – which means you would not be able to go. This is a problem that has been increasingly cropping up post-Brexit, as although the official validity of your passport may be beyond ten years, the EU does not recognise these extra months. On top of this, you must also have at least three months’ validity on your passport beyond the date you intend to leave the EU’s free-movement Schengen territory. For further details, search for ‘documents you need’ at

Tourist trap: You won’t be seeing the Eiffel Tower if your passport doesn’t meet strict EU rules

Q. I am told that at the age of 82 it will be impossible to hire a car in America. Is that right?

Victor Wotton, via email

A. You should be OK if you shop around. The budget hire car website Autoslash says American rental companies ‘typically do not impose a maximum age limit’ as long as you have a driver’s licence ( Rental firm Sixt states: ‘We don’t have upper age limits [but] we do look at any restrictions listed on a renter’s driver’s licence and check that it’s valid.’

Q. We are travelling as a family of four in July so will get family insurance, but my daughter is arriving on her own. Would she still be covered, or should I get her extra insurance?

Annette Hilson, via email

A. This should be fine but call your insurer to check as company policies vary.

Q. Will it be safe to visit Sharm El Sheikh in Egypt in June and are there any deals on?

Mrs O. Mitchell, via email

The destination is not on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s do-not-go list (see ‘Egypt’ at

Tui (, Thomas Cook ( and easyJet Holidays ( have some tempting offers. When we checked, Tui had seven nights at the Royal Albatros Moderna from £672pp all-inclusive, departing later this month from Birmingham Airport.

Q. Are vaccinations required for Vietnam and Thailand? We are going in March on a cruise.

Roger Fear, via email

A. No proof of Covid vaccination is required. You should be up to date with the routine vaccinations offered in the UK, such as for diphtheria, tetanus and polio, but both countries are low risk for malaria. See ‘entry requirements’ at

Q. I have noticed some hotels in Europe, and a few in the UK, are now requesting 10am check-outs. Surely this is not fair?

Tony Miller, Norwich

A. Yes, many hotels now have checkouts at 10am, which seems too early. Before booking, look at the small print – it should be noon or 11am at the earliest.

Many hotels now have checkouts at 10am, reveals the Holiday Guru (file image)

Q. I booked a Jetcruise trip for April 25, but the return from New York to Southampton was cancelled before I left and the whole trip subsequently called off. Jetcruise told me to claim on travel insurance but my insurers won’t pay. Can you help?

Patricia Watt, via email

A. Under the Package Travel Regulations, tour operators must provide refunds for cancellations within 14 days. We talked to the company and a refund should be on the way.


If you need advice, the Holiday Guru is here to answer your questions. Email us at [email protected].

Source: Read Full Article