Peregrinomics

Yesterday I got a reminder from my email calendar – my refund voucher for the cancelled Iberia flight, booked for a quick Inglés long ago, was about to expire. Basically a case of use it or lose it. Well, lose it wasn’t an option, was it? So I dived into the internet and all the different airlines I now have vouchers from and tried to puzzle together a good way back home from my (hopefully, fingers crossed, all the omms) September camino.

As so often happens, I have one plan and the camino has another. I tried and failed, tried and failed to make the flights fit, and even Rome2Rio could only suggest bouncing via Fuerteventura and Valencia on my way north from Santiago! Getting home on the date I wanted would either take forever or cost a fortune, and all my vouchers slid off it like some form of logistical teflon.

I tried the day after, and the day after that, and I even considered taking a few more days and walk to Finisterre, but no. Then I reluctantly tried moving my departure one day forward, and the perfect flights materialised, heavily discounted by my various vouchers! Still I hesitated. No one can know what the situation will be in September, if Spain welcomes tourists, and if so, which ones – the UK is not in the EU, nor the Schengen zone; or you might need a vaccine certificate – which hostels are still open, still running, the Holy Year factor, how many pilgrims are raring to go and how many beds are out of action due to covid restrictions …

Also there was still the price difference to be paid, though far from a fortune. But it’s now just over a year since we came home from our honeymoon celebration camino, and in that time I have cancelled two long walks and a few other travels. So my peregrinomic calculations went as follows:

New flights minus vouchers (which is basically hypothetical money anyway)

plus one-way ALSA tickets when they are available

divided by 365 days with no holidays or travels

equals less than 30 pence a day.

Even if I have to cancel again and lose this money, plus the one non-refundable room I booked because I got a bit too eager, 30 pence a day is a price worth paying for the hope and dream and prospect of a September camino!

Besides, I’m not going for another 6 months, so that makes it just less than 20 pence a day … and I still have the brand new Hokas I bought in the sales and haven’t worn out, so that takes it down to 10 pence a day … and I found €34.70 in my camino wallet! By peregrinomic standards this trip is virtually free – in fact, I’d likely be losing money by not going!

Well, maybe not losing money, but I’d be losing out, so it’s definitely worth the price.

Here’s to hopes, dreams and peregrinomics!


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