Holidays: Simon Calder advises to use ‘human’ travel agents
Tightened travel restrictions mean holidays continue to be off the cards for Britons. Despite this, travel expert Simon Calder says he is “optimistic” travel from the UK will return “with no particular restrictions” within months.
However, it seems much-loved tourist destination Spain might not be an option for some time.
Speaking on an Instagram Live Q&A the travel expert said: “Quarantine tests before travel for the UK will probably go. The Government likes to keep its measures, even the pointless ones, in place for a few weeks.
“I think that is going to happen at the end of March and there will be a great celebration because the number of cases and, let’s desperately hope, that the number of fatalities will have fallen.
“That happens at the end of March and travel reopens from the UK with no particular restrictions coming in.
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“There might be testing before coming home but it will be very very manageable sort of airport ones.”
Even if the UK Government allows holidays to go ahead, though, Mr Calder points out it is up to foreign governments to decide whether or not tourists will be welcome.
According to the travel expert, this could mean bad news for Britons eyeing up a holiday in Spain.
“Spain by late march, I just don’t know,” he said.
While he said the thought of visiting Spain in the summer sounds like “a very good idea”, he added: “The trouble is, of course, we don’t know if Spain wants us.
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Mr Calder explained: “Pedro Sanchez, the prime minister of Spain, said on Monday ‘we will be inoculating 70 percent of our people before we restart international tourism.’
“That is going to happen by the end of the season by which he means, I think, until the end of August.
“That means travel is off the agenda until you get to September which is disappointing.”
Spain has so far distributed approximately 68.4 million doses of the coronavirus vaccine.
The UK has distributed around 7.04 million doses.
Despite the Spanish prime minister’s comments, however, there is some hope.
“Late yesterday the Spanish tourism minister came out and said if you have heard we are not going to reopen until September you’re wrong.
“[She said] Spain is hoping to reopen by effectively late spring so you can have a proper summer season That would be a great celebration I think.”
Yet, although the travel expert is “more optimistic than pessimistic”, he has advised holding off on booking a holiday for the near future.
“I am not booking,” he warned.
“I think if you want to book for august and you are booking a package holiday well you might as well if you are getting a good price.
“You’ll be able to either get the holiday you want or get all of your money back. “
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