Boris Johnson announces plans for re-opening of pubs outdoors
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International holidays have been on hold for some time, with foreign travel for non-essential reasons illegal under the current lockdown rules. However, the Prime Minister has offered a glimmer of hope for foreign holidays, with the aim of announcing new ways to help Britons “plan for the summer”.
Speaking in the House of Commons today, Boris Johnson announced his roadmap out of lockdown for the UK.
Though the nature of international travel is largely dependent on global governments and the state of Covid worldwide, Mr Johnson is to restate the Global Travel Taskforce from April 12 to look at different ways to help reopen the industry.
From June 21, Mr Johnson plans to “remove all legal limits on social contact and other life events”.
Following this, he will then “review” travel.
“A second review will consider the resumption of international travel, which is vital for many businesses which have been hardest kicked including retail hospitality, tourism, and aviation,” he told the House of Commons.
“The successor to the Global Travel Task Force were bought by April 12, so that people can plan for the summer.”
He continued: “The review will consider the potential role of Covid status certification in help in helping us to open safely, but mindful of the many concerns surrounding exclusion discrimination and privacy.”
Though MP’s raised some concern the Global Travel Task Force was being resonated too late, Mr Johnson remained firm in his belief it would allow for Britons to get away before the end of the year.
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“We will continue to support that industry throughout these difficult times,” he said.
“But I believe that setting a deadline of April 12 for the report of the Travel Task Force will give people time to make their plans for the summer, and if things go well, if we can meet those ‘not before’ dates then I do believe there is every chance of an aviation recovery later on this year.”
Mr Johnson also spoke on the current hotel quarantine rule and said the Government would continue to impose such rules in the future.
“We have amongst the toughest quarantine measures anywhere in the world, including the mandatory incarceration in hotels appointed by the Government if you returned from one of the 33 Red List countries,” he said.
“We will continue to impose very very tough controls on people coming into this country.”
Though international travel remains uncertain, some experts suggested overseas holidays may be considered from May.
“May 17 for possible restart of overseas travel,” said Paul Charles, CEO of the PC Agency in a tweet following the House of Commons announcement.
“Thankyou @BorisJohnson for listening to #SaveOurSummer to get the travel sector re-opened in May.
“Sixteen million people will have been vaccinated twice by then and eligible to travel safely.”
The Prime Minister also unveiled plans to get the UK’s domestic tourism industry up and running.
“Step two will begin at least five weeks after the beginning of step one and no earlier than April 12, with an announcement at least seven days in advance,” he said.
It will be during this stage “holiday lets” will reopen from this time, however, the Prime Minister pointed out “only for use by individuals or household groups”.
This will include camping and caravan holidays, as well as private rentals.
From May 17, should data continue to “satisfy the four tests”, the Government will allow hotels, B&Bs and more leisure facilities to reopen.
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