When will foreign holidays be allowed?

22 February 2021, 17:11 | Updated: 23 February 2021, 10:47

When will holidays abroad be allowed?
When will holidays abroad be allowed? Picture: PA
Polly Foreman

By Polly Foreman

Everything we know about when people might be able to go on holiday abroad again - and whether summer holidays can take place this year.

On Monday 22 February, Boris Johnson delivered his roadmap out of lockdown for England.

The Prime Minister gave key dates for the planned re-opening of things like pubs, restaurants, schools and hairdressers.

Read more: When will hairdressers and beauty salons open?

One area that Boris Johnson did not put a date on is that of foreign holidays, which are still being discussed by the government.

Here's what we know.

What did Boris Johnson say about foreign holidays in his roadmap speech?

Mr Johnson said that foreign holidays will be the subject of one of four reviews the government has yet to conduct, and that the earliest possible date they could go ahead would be 17 May.

He has said that the result of this review will be given by 12 April, to allow people to plan their summers accordingly.

The four reviews he outlined are as follows:

  1. The first review will look at how long will we need to maintain social distancing and face masks. This will also inform guidance on working from home, which will continue until the review is complete
  2. The second review will consider international travel, which is vital for any businesses
  3. The third review will consider Covid status certification to enable venues to open safely
  4. The fourth review will look at safe return of major events

When will foreign holidays be allowed?

It is not yet known we will be able to go on an international holiday again, but a recent report suggested that the government are 'increasingly positive' about summer holidays taking place this year.

A Whitehall source told The Times: "It’s looking increasingly positive on summer holidays. Once the vaccination passport system is set up it should be straightforward. That won’t be easy, but we can see the way ahead."

Read more: Police issue warning as Covid vaccine scammers steal thousands from 'desperate' public

International holidays may also depend on the rules and regulations of the country being visited - but there are some early plans for deals to be made between the UK and certain countries.

It is not yet known when Brits will be able to go on holiday again
It is not yet known when Brits will be able to go on holiday again. Picture: PA

What countries will Brits be able to visit in the summer?

There is no confirmation that people in the UK will be able to go on holiday this summer, but it is certainly possible that some destinations will be allowed.

A number of countries are working on 'vaccine certificates', which may allow Brits to visit if they have had their coronavirus jab.

The Greek tourism minister, for example, has said his government is in "preliminary discussions" with the UK ministers over a possible travel agreement for vaccinated Britons.

Reports have suggested that Greece could be a possible holiday destination this summer
Reports have suggested that Greece could be a possible holiday destination this summer. Picture: PA

According to the Telegraph, scientists have said that a lack of international standards for vaccine passports means that they cannot be introduced yet, but Professor Christopher Dye, a professor of epidemiology at the University of Oxford, said: "An effective vaccine passport system that would allow the return to pre-Covid-19 activities, including travel, without compromising personal or public health, must meet a set of demanding criteria – but it is feasible."

What is the current government guidance on foreign holidays?

We are currently in lockdown, and non-essential international travel is prohibited.

The government guidance states: "You cannot leave your home or the place where you are living for holidays or overnight stays unless you have a reasonable excuse for doing so. This means that holidays in the UK and abroad are not allowed.

"This includes staying in a second home, caravan or boat, if that is not your primary residence. This also includes staying with anyone who you don’t live with unless they’re in your support bubble."


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