Summer holiday prices have fallen by up to 52 per cent compared to 2019, new research suggests.
Analysis from price comparison website Travelsupermarket.com found that package holidays to green listed Malta are on average 52 per cheaper than before the pandemic, with trips to Spain around 20 per cent less costly. Greece and Portugal came in at 11 per cent and 12 per cent cheaper, respectively.
The plummeting prices are likely related to the ongoing uncertainty surrounding summer holidays due to restrictions both at home and abroad. Malta, for example, is only accepting fully vaccinated travellers, narrowing its tourist pool and potentially depressing prices.
In the past few days, there has been a slew of announcements tightening restrictions on UK travellers. Yesterday, Croatia became the latest country to impose obligatory Covid tests for all visitors from the UK, including those who are fully vaccinated, because of the surge in cases of the delta variant. Only children under 12 will be exempt, and the measure takes force on July 26. Meanwhile, the US is advising against travel to the UK.
France’s appearance on the new ‘amber plus’ list, which demands that even double-jabbed travellers must quarantine upon their return, may have also shattered the confidence of British holidaymakers .
Is Lanzarote the answer for an affordable break this summer?
For those looking for a last-minute summer break, Lanzarote could the best value package holiday destination this, according to analysis by TravelSupermarket of its 2021 summer outbound pricing data.
The holiday price comparison site has crunched the numbers and found that the the Canary Island, which pre-pandemic languished in 32nd place for package holiday prices from the UK during July and August 2019, is now riding high in first place, beating the usual suspects on the Spanish mainland and Greek Islands.
Emma Couthurst from TravelSupermarket says that the lowest priced holiday destinations are surprising until placed in the context of the last year;
“Being off the west coast of Africa and a longer flight away, the Canaries tend to be a pricier option than their mainland and Balearic cousins. But many Spanish on the mainland, who would normally travel to the Canaries, are choosing to holiday at home. As a result, it is mostly Canarians holidaying in their own backyard and a small smattering of European. With only a small number of visitors to the Islands, holiday prices have plummeted.”
It looks set to be another scorching day. And what better place to enjoy both the sun and the company of others than the beach?
The question is how to do so without bumping into the crowds. The answer is to seek out England’s secret beaches. Rather than playing social distancing dodgems on the UK’s busiest shores, head to these hidden beauties instead – they’re sandy, and gloriously off-grid…
ICYMI: Foreign Office issues advice on summer holidays
As schools break up for the summer, the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) is urging travellers to follow advice before they head overseas this summer.
Jennifer Anderson, Director of Consular, FCDO, said yesterday afternoon:
The success of our vaccine roll out means people who have been fully vaccinated in the UK can now travel to amber list countries, without the need for quarantine on their return, with the exception of those returning from France.
But travel this summer is still different from before. It is essential that travellers plan ahead and familiarise themselves with the rules and requirements of the country they plan to visit to minimise disruption and avoid disappointment.
The first step for anybody thinking of going abroad is to check the FCDO’s Travel Advice and subscribe to updates. We keep it under constant review so it reflects the most up to date information.
Cases rise in Australia despite weeks-long lockdown
Coronavirus cases in Australia rose again on Thursday, despite a weeks-long lockdown, with authorities warning that infections would rise more and take a toll on the economy as the country battles to contain the delta variant.
New South Wales (NSW), Australia’s most populous state, reported 124 new cases, versus 110 a day ago. Most cases were in state capital Sydney which is in its fourth week of a lockdown. Victoria state, entering a second week of stay-at-home orders, logged 26 new cases, up from 22.
Hotel quarantine bills could rise by £500 to curb trips to red list countries
Travellers face a £500 increase in the costs of hotel quarantine to more than £2,250 under plans being considered by ministers to curb “unnecessary” trips to red list countries.
Ministers are frustrated that the taxpayer is subsidising the costs of putting thousands of travellers up in hotels for 10 days when they “should not be travelling to red list countries”.
About 30,000 people have already stayed in the hotels at a cost of up to £1,750 per person after arriving back from red list destinations. The price also includes PCR tests on day two and day eight.
Grant Shapps, the Transport Secretary, voiced his frustration in the Commons when he insisted the scheme did not make a profit for the Government but was subsidised.
“I also want to point out that people should not be travelling to red list countries. The only people who should be coming back to government quarantine are British or Irish citizens, or people with permanent rights of residence,” Mr Shapps said.