As the world reopens, I’m keeping aside an earlier trip report from India to focus on a new trip report. I will get to that one eventually, but for now, as travel outside India opens up, I wanted to bring you all my experiences of my first international trip that I undertook in September 2021. A lot of things have changed since the pre-pandemic era, and a lot remains the same. So, a brief report would help you plan if you are heading out to somewhere exotic in Europe in the coming months.
In September 2021, I was supposed to make a work trip to France. Unfortunately, my visa for Europe had expired in the meantime, so I had to head out for a new Schengen Visa before I could plan this trip, and hence, everything was pretty last minute, as I’ll explain while we go along. There were a lot of touch and go moments as well.
Since I was going to pass through Paris on both ends, I figured it might be an idea to add a stop in Paris and get some much deserved R&R on this trip. It would also be an opportunity to walk around the Eiffel Tower and catch the Arc d Triumph, Wrapped, as the last work of Christo and Jeanne Claude. Hence, I eventually added a couple of nights in Paris as well.
The flight was booked in cash, and hence, I stuck to Premium Economy on this trip. There was a minimal network of flights operating between Delhi and Paris CDG, and therefore, I was going to land up straight at the event I was headed to.
Eventually, the trip lined up as such:
- Obtaining the Schengen Visa
- Converting the Indian vaccination certification to a French pass
- Testing requirements to travel to France
- Plaza Premium Lounge at Delhi Airport Terminal 3 (International)
- Air France Delhi to Paris CDG onboard Airbus A350-900 (Business Class)
- Air France Paris CDG to Toulouse onboard an A320 (European Business Class)
- Hotel Residence Inn, Toulouse
- Air France Toulouse to Paris Orly onboard an A321 (Economy Class)
- Testing for departure to India
- Hotel Renaissance Le Defense, Paris
- Hotel Moxy, CDG Airport
- Air France Paris CDG to Delhi on board Airbus A350-900 (Premium Economy)
- Post arrival testing
You can see I am trying to provide as much information about the testing as I can, given this is a significant requirement from now on. I’ll try and roll this out as quickly as possible. However, if you’d like me to add something specific, please leave me a message in the comments section below, and I’ll come around to it.
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