Sasha Smolova (picture) took her children out of school for four weeks
A single mother took her children out of school for four weeks after she realized that she could secure a cheap vacation thanks to greatly reduced Covid travel offers.
Sasha Smolova and her sons Aleks (eight) and Andrey (six) flew to Malta for a little over £ 1,000 for a month.
Ms. Smolova says Coronavirus felt it was the only time she and her sons could ever afford to be away from home in the sun for so long.
She got cheap £ 150 round-trip flights from RyanAir and 28 nights of accommodation in a number of four-star hotels for half the price she allegedly would have cost without the virus.
That meant her children were out of the country for four weeks, followed by two more children who are stuck at home in self-isolation and return to school on November 16.
But she still says that more single mothers like her should take advantage of people’s current fear of flying to secure a bargain break.
Ms. Smolova said, “I hadn’t received any bookings for work for October. I spoke to my friends in Malta and the weather was great. I risked it. It was still scary to do so.
“But Corona was a bonus for us.”
Ms. Smolova and her sons Aleks (eight) and Andrey (six) (pictured) flew to Malta for just over £ 1,000 for a month
She got cheap £ 150 return flights from RyanAir and 28 nights in a range of four-star hotels
Ms. Smolova says she works three jobs to make ends meet – as a photographer, interpreter, and as a physical education teacher in an activity center.
She saves a lot of money to be able to take short vacations with her children three times a year, but admits she could never afford a month off before the pandemic.
This means that cheap flights and hotels were available to those brave enough to purchase them.
She says bringing her boys to Malta meant they missed four weeks of school, but two weeks of the trip were during the October break.
Miss Smolova (pictured) says she works three jobs to make ends meet
And she says they learned things abroad that they didn’t learn in class.
“Usually we’re a family that travels three times a year,” she explained.
“Going on vacation is good for your sanity, even if you have no problems, it makes you positive and happy.
“I’m a single parent and when you go on vacation and spend time with your kids, with no clients, no work, no … I have three jobs, I’m always busy and don’t have much time when they’re at home.
“I do a lot of different sports with them, but when you are on vacation just enjoy yourself.”
The most recent holidays in recent years included Fuerteventura, Bulgaria, Lanzarote and Latvia.
But the family had to accept that they couldn’t escape on their usual trip in August.
In late September, Miss Smolova of Peterhead, Aberdeenshire said she had begun to believe that the risk of travel was worth worrying about.
“I saw a few people out,” she said.
“I knew the government was suggesting not to go on vacation, but then I kept checking which countries you could travel to without self-isolation, and we got to the point where I found that Malta had changed it, that you it doesn’t need self-isolating when you arrive from the UK. ‘
The trio had been there last year when the hotel cost more than their entire vacation for a fortnight in August alone.
Ms. Smolova said: “The tickets were extremely cheap compared to last year when we were there with the children.
The vacation meant her children (pictured) were out of the country for four weeks, followed by two more children stuck at home in self-isolation and returning to school on November 16
‘The vacation itself was extremely cheap. The hotel was also very cheap.
“Last year we were there for two weeks and I couldn’t afford a posh hotel or hotels, so I rented an apartment. This time we were in three different hotels and RyanAir offered that you can change your dates or travel destination for free when you buy tickets.
“Everything was supportive, even though you weren’t really allowed to go.
“I don’t care where I go as long as there’s sun and it’s hot. I check flights and see where they are cheaper in Europe. Then I will see which apartments I can rent. My key is flexibility
The family flew out on October 3rd with £ 150 worth of Ryanair tickets. Aleks and Andrey were taken out of class for a total of three weeks and did not return until November 16.
Since the mother of two was worried about the temperature control at the airport, she initially only booked two nights in a 35-euro hotel. If either of them couldn’t fly, they hardly wasted any money.
And when they arrived there was so little demand that they checked into two four-star hotels for the rest of their stay and didn’t return to the cheap until October 31st to fly home.
The family then had to isolate themselves for an additional two weeks upon their return to Scotland, which meant they were on vacation or stuck at home for a total of six weeks.
Miss Smolova said they were incredibly lucky with the weather. Upon arrival, they saw temperatures of 32 ° C, which only dropped to 25 ° C on their last day.
“October is already out of season, the water slides were closed the day we arrived, but the sea was just as warm as it was in August and we could swim in the hotels pool,” she said.
She still says that more single mothers like her should take advantage of people’s current fear of flying to secure a bargain break
“We all tanned very well, it was hot, we wore skirts and shorts. There were fewer people. ‘
She understands that she may be criticized for taking her boys out of school – but says she doesn’t mind.
“It doesn’t bother me at all and to be honest the coronavirus has changed my mind,” she admits.
“Nobody teaches you how to be happy in life at school. Coronavirus, it’s a bonus because all education, both my children’s education, is online and all of the things they do in class are online.
“I printed out the things they had to learn and we practiced on vacation. Two weeks of self-isolation – all information is online. I gave them tasks. It wasn’t a problem at all. ‘
Now she says she wouldn’t rule out traveling again during the pandemic to make the most of cheap vacations.
She added: ‘Happy mom, happy kids. And neither of us had corona. Malta was the longest vacation of my life – it was great! ‘