- UK government introduces new travel policies
CLIA Director shares details of collaboration with travel authorities
- Rise in search demand for holidays as more countries reopen
- Scenic launches 2021 river cruise collection
UK government introducing international travel policy
The UK has revealed it plans to implement an international travel policy which allows journeys to be made by land or sea. The initial policy will follow a traffic light system which classifies countries as green, amber, or red depending on their coronavirus cases.
Countries classified as ‘green’ or ‘amber’ will be exempt from quarantine from the 10th July, with classifications based on robust public health criteria.
The government’s full list of ‘safe’ quarantine-free destinations includes:
Antigua and Barbuda
Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba
St Kitts and Nevis
St Pierre and Miquelon
Trinidad and Tobago
Ireland was already exempt as part of the common travel area, as are the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man. This is a welcome change, as now the travel restrictions have been lifted, Britons can start to travel and plan holidays for the future.
Read more: Government working on wider travel freedoms
CLIA UK continue to work closely with authorities to plan the return of cruise
The cruise industry, in particular, is continuously working in collaboration with the government, health bodies and maritime authorities, confirmed by CLIA UK & Ireland Director, Andy Harmer.
Speaking with Travel Weekly, Harmer continued, “A lot of work is going on in the background to transform the experience of taking a cruise. The industry is working in collaboration with the government on a ‘door to door’ strategy – from the time of booking through to the passengers’ return home – that would go way beyond protocols in place or proposed for any other travel sector.
“Throughout, CLIA has been working closely with the Department for Transport, Port Health, Public Health England, and the Maritime & Coastguard Agency to develop the road map to resumption – what will happen from time of booking to embarkation at the port, onboard, ports of call, disembarkation and customer follow-up.
“We are also engaged with public health professionals as we review the whole customer journey, from minimising the likelihood of on-board cases by thorough screening of each guest before departure, through comprehensive on-board management and repatriation plans should cases occur on board.”
Rise in search demand for holidays as more countries reopen
Following the UK’s new travel policy announcement, holiday comparison site – TravelSupermarket – recorded its busiest weekend for search since the UK was placed under lockdown in March. Searches for summer holidays to Spain, Italy, Barbados, Croatia, France, and Greece were most popular, with Spain comprising 38% of all searches over the weekend. This included searches for regions such as the Balearics, Canaries, Costa Del Sol, and Costa Blanca.
Greece also experienced a 216% spike in searches, with regions such as Crete, Corfu, Rhodes, and Santorini, while Italy received a 170%; France 167%; Croatia 348%; and Barbados 476%. Many of these destinations are set to be featured on the UK government’s list of ‘green’ destinations, with 15 nations thought to be on the list also including the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Norway, and Finland.
The news comes shortly after the Italian Tourist Board (ENIT) published their guidelines for tourists to follow when visiting. Currently, Britons must quarantine for 14 days after returning from Italy to the UK, though it’s presumed that the country will soon be included as one of the air bridges between the UK meaning they may not have to quarantine at all depending on the level of cases.
Speaking on Italy’s new guidelines, ENIT’s Manager for the UK and Ireland, Flavio Zappacosta said, “We hope to reassure visitors that Italy is ready for tourists and has the correct measures in place to both ensure their health and safety while having a fantastic experience in the destination.”
Other countries are also working on lifting their restrictions, including Dubai which has confirmed it is allowing foreign visitors to enter from early July. The Dubai media office commented on the news, “The new announcement will allow thousands of people affected by the worldwide restrictions in passenger air traffic since the start of the pandemic to resume their travel plans”. Tourists visiting the country will be required to hold international health insurance, covid-19 tests, and a completed health declaration form.
The rise in searches shows the positive demand for holidays, with many longing for a sun-soaked vacation and escape from everyday life to enjoy the getaways lockdown has had us dreaming of. As more countries begin to plan to reopen and release their health and safety protocols, we will update you with further information.
Scenic launches 2021 river cruise collection
Featuring brand new sites in Ypres and Passchendaele, Scenic River Cruises’ 2021 itineraries are packed with gastronomic delight and world war history. The cruise line has released it’s latest in a collection of sailings, including some which are brand new for 2021.
The culinary cruises include an on-board dinner prepared by Michelin star chef, Didier Goiffon and a cooking class at the three-star Michelin chef Georges Blanc’s restaurant. These itineraries highlight the gourmet food France is renowned for, with both the Tastes of Southern France sailing along the Rhone and the Flavours of Bordeaux along the Garonne.
Also new for 2021 are the new WWI sites visited in Ypres and Passchendaele which have been added to reflect the trends Scenic has noted since lockdown. Scenic Group UK Managing Director, Colin Downing commented, “While the world may have changed, we are confident customers will increasingly look to smaller ship experiences like those on Scenic’s Space Ships. There is also a clear trend towards true personalisation and once-in-a-lifetime moments, which is why we continue to enhance our ScenicFreechoice and exclusive Enrich experiences.
“Our entire fleet of Scenic Space-Ships are perfectly suited for exploring the historic waterways of Europe. […] The cruising industry is used to adapting to change and here at Scenic we are agile enough to continue to ensure any new guidelines introduced are met, and our guest experience stays at the heart of everything we do, as we all navigate this unprecedented time.”
Read more: Scenic reveals new 2021 itineraries