Travel review day

By | Category: Travel destinations

France would welcome more British visitors to the French Riviera as well as the rest of France.

From looking at the media it appears that no-one approves of the existing state of affairs. There are clamours for travel to be opened up.

The Chancellor, Rushi Sunak, wants overseas travel opened up supposedly to assist industry. The travel industry, of course, wants more countries added to the green list and probably every other country in the world not on the green list added to the amber list. The French were hopping mad, until the country was moved to the amber list yesterday, to be made the only country where, on return to the UK, quarantine would need to take place.

But what does the Great British Public want?

It seems to be split. There are those who want a holiday almost at any cost but are held back by restrictions of one sort or another and there are those who would prefer to stay at home for a bit longer until other nations catch up with the UK on vaccination numbers.

The Scottish and Welsh governments recommend no overseas travel but realise they are pretty powerless to stop it given how easy it is to cross to England and travel from there.

One country that has achieved parity is the Republic of Ireland where it looks as though the number of double vaccinations there exceeds the numbers in the UK. It lags behind on first vaccinations but must be reaching herd immunity levels just like the UK is. Yet, somewhat strangely, Ireland along with the Isle of Man has been placed on the American “don’t travel” list

So why not Ireland for a holiday?

It may not have the beaches of Spain or Portugal, Florida or Greece but it has a landscape that draws walkers and cyclists and offers an enjoyable nightlife in almost every city, town and village bar.

If you prefer a beach then there are plenty around the UK. It’s just that – by and large – the travel industry isn’t geared up to provide UK holidays. It concentrated on overseas ones and that could be why it has been pushing so hard for overseas travel to be opened up. It didn’t gear its portfolio of holidays to cover the eventuality that we might not be able to travel abroad. It though the day of the seaside holiday was past.

The changes have been announced. Austria, Germany, Latvia, Norway, Romania, Slovenia and Slovakia have been added to the green list. On the amber list go Bahrain, France, India,(a little odd given the growing case numbers in the Indian state of Kerala) Qatar and the UAE. To the red list go Georgia, Mexico, La Reunion and Mayotte, the last two being places difficult to get to in the best of times.

Overshadowing the moves is the attitude of destinations. What we don’t know is whether overseas countries will make it easier for us to travel by saying we don’t need locator forms, tests 48-72 hours before we arrive and quarantine if not fully vaccinated.

That depends on how confident the governments of those destinations feel and nothing to do with the British government.

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