‘Couldn’t believe it’: Family forced to cancel holidays because children aren’t vaccinated

Booster jab: Gillian Keegan discusses travel advice

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Ally Keeting and her husband Joe, along with their families, booked a cruise holiday back in August.

The whole family was going to enjoy a Caribbean cruise during Christmas.

However, they recently saw their cruise holiday cancelled by P&O Ferries because their children, Sofia, two, and Finley, five months, aren’t double vaccinated and therefore, are not allowed aboard.

P&O rules state all passengers must be double-vaccinated regardless of their age.

The family, however, claimed they were given a week to organise the vaccines, as they had to be completed by December 3.

According to Ally, the company said to them they understood the young children couldn’t get vaccinated, but this was the new policy.

The P&O Cruises states all passengers on Caribbean holidays between October 2021 and March 2022 must have completed their vaccination, irrespective of age.

The family, who had spent over £14,000 on their holidays, got a refund but paid an extra £2,000 to go with another firm.

“We’re just baffled and really upset.

“How can we achieve something that’s unachievable?” Ally said.

“There’s nowhere in the world that’s vaccinating children that young – the vaccines aren’t even licensed for that age group.

“It’s like hitting your head on a brick wall.

“I just couldn’t believe it.

“I think they just want adults.

“They can resell the cabins at a higher price than what we paid for the children because you pay per person,” Ally explained.

The family have now booked another trip with Tui.

“We just felt really sad,” she said.

“If they had to cancel it because of regulations you’d understand, but when it’s their own new policy that doesn’t make sense: it’s irritating and hurtful,” said Ally.

A spokesperson from P&O Cruises commented on the issue.

“We are so sorry for the disappointment that this has caused.

“However, given the long-haul destinations and the number of different countries visited, combined with the current health protocols and various and evolving entry requirements in the Caribbean, all guests (irrespective of age) must have completed their vaccination course at least 14 days prior to travel for this season of Caribbean cruise holidays.”

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