Coronavirus’ “ airlifts’ ‘are finally taking effect today with dozens of open destinations – but a poll shows they may fall flat, as less than a fifth of Britons plan to go on holiday abroad this year.
Research for MailOnline found that the public has little appetite for sun-drenched beaches, despite lifting draconian quarantine measures in many countries.
Only 17 percent plan to take a break abroad this year, while 22 percent say they are going on vacation in the UK. About 54 percent say they have given up on the idea for 2020 altogether, according to the Redfield & Wilton Strategies poll.
Even among those who do expect a vacation, most don’t go in the summer. Only 11 percent are looking at books for this month, a third the next month, and 28 percent say they will wait until September.
Another 27 percent say they won’t take a break until October or later this year.
Nearly half said they were planning a vacation abroad before the pandemic hit – and only a quarter suggested no escape at all.
About 54 percent say they have given up on their 2020 vacation altogether, according to the MailOnline survey by Redfield & Wilton Strategies
The poll found that even among those who do expect a vacation, most won’t go in the summer
Where can you fly back and forth without quarantining?
The 73 countries
Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Aruba, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Barbados, Belgium, Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba, Croatia, Curaçao, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominica, Faroe Islands, Fiji, Finland, France, French Polynesia, Germany , Greece, Greenland, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macau, Malta, Mauritius, Monaco, Netherlands, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Reunion, San Marino, Serbia, Seychelles, South Korea, Spain, St. Barthélemy, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Pierre and Miquelon, Switzerland, Taiwan, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, Vatican City, Vietnam.
Plus the 14 British Overseas Territories.
And who is not on the list?
Canada, the US and most of Central or South America. Countries in Africa, the Middle East and most of Asia are also excluded.
In Europe, travelers from Sweden, Portugal and Russia must also be quarantined.
The UK government has confirmed quarantine-free travel to over 70 countries and British overseas territories.
In addition to European short-haul destinations, the list of travel corridors also includes long-distance locations such as Australia, Barbados, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand and Vietnam.
However, the US, Canada, Portugal and Sweden are not on the list and many other countries in South America, Asia and Africa are not covered by the exemption due to the high level of coronavirus.
As part of the plans, the State Department has eased the embargo on “anything but essential” global travel for 67 countries, although travelers still have to remain in quarantine when they return from destinations that don’t have a travel corridor.
The rules are slightly different in Scotland, where Prime Minister Nicola Sturgeon has approved 57 countries – but Spain is not one of them.
The scheme eventually started as:
- Anger intensified when Foreign Office officials told all British to avoid cruise ships – not just the over-70s;
- People traveling to the UK from France say they are still told to isolate for 14 days;
- Holidaymakers are encouraged to always wear masks, even on the beach and by the pool;
- Travel insurers admitted that they are unlikely to pay out if someone gets sick from Covid-19 abroad;
Now that the World Health Organization has warned that the coronavirus pandemic is still on the rise, tourists in most vacation destinations are facing a completely different experience.
A separate poll yesterday suggested that there are widespread doubts in many other countries as to whether they want British tourists, with infection rates still relatively high in the UK.
In the Balearic Islands – bracing for the arrival of thousands of English sun worshipers this weekend – police have been given authority to give fine holidaymakers £ 90 if they don’t wear cover outside of their hotel rooms.
But officials confirmed last night that vacationers do not have to wear the masks by the pool or on beaches in Mallorca and Ibiza.
Tourists also don’t have to wear face cover in restaurants and bars when sitting to eat or drink.
The Spanish authorities are concerned that the massive arrival of tourists could lead to a spike in Covid cases in the Balearic Islands, which have one of the lowest contamination rates in Spain.
In recent days, police have closed a series of illegal parties in Mallorca and Ibiza, where large numbers of tourists have gathered without masks and without social distance.
Today it has been found that Serbia is being removed from a list of places where people returning to or visiting England can avoid quarantine.
The UK government has announced that the Joint Biosecurity Center and Public Health England have “updated their coronavirus assessments of Serbia based on the most recent data.”
Serbia was on a list of 76 countries and territories from which people arriving in England will no longer have to isolate for 14 days from Friday.
The list included popular destinations such as Spain, Germany, France, and Italy, but Portugal was one of the notable omissions.
Vacationers should wear a mask EVERYWHERE as part of the ‘new normal’
Vacationers should wear masks when traveling, in hotels, and even on beaches, a coalition of the world’s largest travel companies will say today.
As part of a ‘new normal’ for vacations, the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) urges tourists to almost always wear masks wherever they are to avoid a second wave of coronavirus.
Tourists should even have face coverage by the pool and on beaches where they can’t keep a two-meter distance between their fellow sun worshipers, the council says.
Airports, hotels, night clubs, museums, gyms, and all other “ indoor locations, ” including cruise ship public areas, should also have mandatory mask-wearing rules until a vaccine is found, it recommends.
The Welsh government and the Northern Ireland government decided to follow the same approach, but the Scottish government drew up a list of only 39 countries, excluding Spain or Serbia.
There have been two nights of violent clashes in the Serbian capital, Belgrade, by thousands of people protesting against the coronavirus locking measures.
Serbian authorities have reported 352 coronavirus deaths and 17,342 cases, but it is alleged that the data does not represent the full impact of the virus.
British holidaymakers were looking forward to meeting new grandchildren and being reunited with loved ones while traveling on the first day of the new quarantine regulations.
Passengers passing through Gatwick Airport’s North Terminal admitted they would not travel if they had to isolate for another two weeks upon return.
“We probably would have gone later,” said Ray Gordge, 64, of Taunton, who was on his way to Paris to see his daughter for the first time in six months, and to meet his new grandson, who was born last week.
“It’s exciting, I’m glad the quarantine has been lifted to be honest,” he said.
“It’s nice to have a little more normality.”
Mr Gordge said that he had only booked his easyJet flight in the past few days, but that he was not worried about traveling.
“I’m okay, as long as you’re wearing a face mask. That’s very strange. “
Although Labor welcomed the relaxation of the quarantine by the British government for some countries, it criticized ministers for not having signed multi-destination agreements to accept British visitors without restrictions.
Shadow Transport Secretary Jim McMahon said workers and vacationers paid the price for the government’s failure to act.
He added, “The fact that they have not been able to negotiate airlifts is an indictment of their failure to tackle the crisis at home.
“They were too slow to take lockdown, too slow to order PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) and too slow to protect our country.
“Labor has consistently called for a sectoral deal to support the entire airline industry, including the supply chain, based on our six terms.
“The ministers at Tory have taken no action and the workers are paying the price and the trips are being canceled.”
As of today, Scottish holidaymakers are allowed to visit 57 countries and 14 UK areas without having to enter a two-week quarantine upon return. However, travelers have been warned to expect restrictions in destination countries, including temperature controls on arrival.