Holidays after Covid
We might not be there quite just yet – but the time is fast approaching when we can all look forward to hard-earned holidays after Covid-19.
Home or away?
Although there might be light at the end of the tunnel, we expect to get there just one step at a time.
The government has advised against all non-essential foreign travel since the March announcement made by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO). The advice is still in place and remains indefinitely.
Underscoring the seriousness with which the government is discouraging foreign travel is the introduction of compulsory quarantining of all arrivals into the UK with effect from the 8th of June. This includes British citizens who are returning from anywhere abroad – unless you are one of the estimated two million people who will be exempted from self-isolation (which includes bus drivers, dentists and police officers).
The controls are to be backed up by spot checks and fixed-penalty fines of £1,000.
On a more positive note, however, a poll published by the Daily Mail newspaper on the 10th of April revealed that 84% of those surveyed believed that foreign travel would become a possibility once again within the next six months. This contrasted with only 60% of Americans sharing such confidence.
The creation of "air bridges" may ease travel between the UK and other European holiday destinations. On the 26th of May, for example, the Telegraph newspaper suggested that such an agreement with Portugal may be imminent.
The home front
On the home front, lockdown is already beginning to ease. Most notable is the relaxation of restrictions on social contact that takes place outside.
Small groups of people are now free to meet outdoors. This will allow friends and family members, for example, to get together in their gardens once again, and children may be able to be reunited with their grandparents – provided all such social contact takes place outside and not indoors.
As easing like this begins to gather pace, parts of the UK tourism industry is also gearing up for reopening as early as this July.
Because of their outdoors orientation, campsites, holiday parks and open-air tourist attractions are likely to be among the first to benefit, suggested a story in the Guardian newspaper.
Campsites around England have already started taking bookings, said the article, aimed at opening as early as the 4th of July. Some holiday parks are also planning similar re-openings, but with measures in place to maintain an element of social distancing and to limit the number of visitors staying overnight.
A story in Good Housekeeping magazine on the 26th of May also referred to Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden’s reassurance that day trips within England might be possible as early as the beginning of July – but also repeated that the current guidelines would prohibit staying overnight.
Within England – but not Wales, Scotland, or Northern Ireland – and provided you do not stay overnight, you may now travel as far as you like to find open spaces to visit. Your travelling companions should still be family members, unless you can maintain social distancing throughout the trip – because you are cycling together, for example.
Finally, while the information used in this article is correct as at the time of writing, the situation regarding coronavirus and restrictions can rapidly change. You can keep up to date by visiting the Government website
This data is correct as at the time of writing.