Coronavirus has dashed plans for summer holidays 2020, it has been announced. EU bosses have warned holidaymakers against booking any breaks over the summer season as the deadly virus rages on, in the latest travel advice. There are currently 1,870,076 cases of coronavirus globally at the time of writing.
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Popular holiday destinations Spain, Italy, France and Germany all top the list of most affected countries after the USA.
Ursula von der Leyen, the European Commission President, has now issued a warning against making summer holiday plans.
She told German newspaper, Bild, that holidays won’t be an option until September at the earliest.
“I’d advise everyone to wait before making holiday plans,” von der Leyen said.
“At the moment, no one can make reliable forecasts for July and August.
“We will need to learn to live with this virus for many months, probably until next year.”
Meanwhile, France’s President Emmanuel Macron is urging EU countries to keep their borders closed until September.
France has said it will maintain strict border controls until October 30.
The UK Government is currently warning Britons against all non-essential global travel abroad “indefinitely.”
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advice is: “As countries respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, including travel and border restrictions, the FCO advises British nationals against all but essential international travel.
“Any country or area may restrict travel without notice.
“If you live in the UK and are currently travelling abroad, you are strongly advised to return now, where and while there are still commercial routes available. Many airlines are suspending flights and many airports are closing, preventing flights from leaving.”
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Meanwhile, Aito, the Association of Independent Tour Operators, has said it anticipates UK travel to return in time for the summer.
A source said: “If luck is on our side, then three months hence should see things calm down on the virus front.
“It’s likely that the first travellers within the UK will venture out again to explore their own country at the traditional start of the summer season.”
Most experts are predicting early Autumn departures, meaning September to October could be a great time to think about going away.
Roger Pride, Visiting Professor School of Hospitality and Tourism Management at the University of Surrey, commented: “Post COVID-19, nobody really knows how the world will look or specifically, how people will behave when it comes to booking holidays again. Some people will still feel unsafe and not holiday at all, while some will feel more secure in destinations on their own doorstep.
“Others will return to their favourite place and gain comfort from being in familiar surroundings, while those with cabin fever will long for new horizons and wide open spaces.
“Destinations all over the world will be thinking about how they ‘bounce back from this life-changing pandemic. It will not be enough to operate business as usual anymore. Success will come instead to those adaptive places and businesses who are authentic and who think deeply about the visitor experience they offer.
“Having a compelling visitor story will be more vital than ever and may mean the difference between future success and failure.”
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