Covid POLL: Will you book a holiday as prices ‘skyrocket’ after travel restrictions axed?
Simon Calder says he’s ‘holding off’ booking a holiday
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Jet2 boss, Steve Heapy, said the holiday company saw a “huge spike” in bookings and demand had returned to “around pre-Covid levels” after the government said pre-departure tests for fully vaccinated people would be scrapped. EasyJet said its bookings rose by almost 200 percent compared to last week, whilst Tui said it experienced a “strong uptick”.
EasyJet said flights to Spanish destinations Tenerife, Alicante, Malaga and Lanzarote were the most in-demand, and the airline has put about 1.1 million more seats on sale from London Gatwick for summer 2022. From 4am GMT on Friday, January 7, fully vaccinated travellers coming to England will no longer have to take a test before they travel. And from Sunday, January 9, rather than taking a PCR test on day two of arrival, international travellers can take a cheaper lateral flow.
The announcement comes after airlines said passenger testing was making no real impact, while harming their industry.
Jet2’s Mr Heapy said: “It’s been very tough for the travel industry. The biggest thing this industry needs is not lots of bailouts from the Government, we just need to fly.
“We just need to take people away and we will be profitable, we will be paying tax, contributing to the economy and to do that we need stability.”
Data suggested one in every 15 people in England had the virus on New Year’s Eve.
The move from Mr Johnson to open up international flights will be a welcome sign to the Tories that he is beginning to open up the economy further.
Mr Heapy told the BBC’s Today programme that before the rule changes on Wednesday, bookings were “well below” usual levels.
He added: “People are desperate to get away, that’s been demonstrated over the past couple of days.
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“We can’t just jump into lockdowns and further restrictions every time there is a new variant.
“We have to learn to live with it and hopefully this is the beginning and the end, and we can get back to some normality.”
EasyJet said a survey the company conducted show that Britons were planning more holidays than usual in 2022 and are prepared to spend around £1,000 more than usual on them.
Will you book a holiday? And are you in support of scrapping testing? Have your say in the comments section below.
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