Matt Haycox Daily

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Testing time for travel to the US

By Ricky Browne

Its great that people from the UK can now travel to the United States in time for Thanksgiving. But its not all easy sailing so to speak.

Because now you need to do a Covid test prior to departure.

That sounds like it needn’t be too complicated. But of course there can always be a fly in the ointment – as I have just found out.

I went crawling through the list of test providers recommended by my airline, but many of them said that I was too close to my departure date to order from them. That of course entailed minutes of giving them information about me, my flight, my address, etc, etc.

Finally I found Collinson, a company that seemed to be fine – with a discounted price of £23 pounds for the home delivery of the test. So I made the order and paid my money, and waited for today to come, when I should have received the package.

But first I tracked the order. Its on its way, was the last message from Collinson. But then I dug a little deeper and used the tracking number provided by Royal Mail.

Oops. The package was being returned to Collinson because it didn’t have the full address.

It turns out my apartment number was missing. Now why that happened I don’t know.

So, eventually I get online to a real person, Magmoeda and told them the sad story.

The response seemed pretty good.

“I can confirm that the matter had been escalated, We apologize for any inconvenience caused by this.

“The test kit is delivered within 4 business days, The test kit will still be sent to you, However we do worry that it might not arrive in time.

Could you please confirm whether a collection of the test kit could be an option at the Stansted airport?”

Yes, I say.

“Perfect, Please allow me a few minutes whilst I arrange for a collection for this evening at Stansted,” they said.

Anxiety levels still high. Not helped by dreams of a riot a la the Capital at my hotel, and not being able to move to another one.

But its rare for anything to go smoothly. Hopefully I’ll get that test today, and with my ESTA, and whatever else I need I’ll make it onto the flight without any more worries.

So, provided this all works out – cheers to Collinson for its customer service. Now maybe I can order my return test from them too. And it will be a happy Thanks getting for Thanksgiving.

And I can’t wait for a return to normality one of these days.

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