As we near one of the first stops on Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s road map out of lockdown, it’s easy to feel complacent in the knowledge that life is returning to normal soon. But as the UK’s COVID cases continue to drop, other European countries aren’t so lucky.
According to the road map, the earliest people could go abroad is May 17th. But in countries such as Greece, there has been a new surge in cases – and in Greece’s case, approximately 500 people are admitted to hospital as a result of Coronavirus each day. Greece’s death rate, in particular, has been steadily rising since early February – despite the country showing a keenness to allow Brits to vacation there this summer. Italy’s cases, on the other hand, have started to decrease – after steadily growing back in February.
According to Liverpool Echo, speaking on BBC Breakfast today, Government minister Helen Whately said people should “hold off on booking’ a foreign holiday.”
“What I would council is caution at the moment for people to hold off on booking, because as anybody can see, we’re in a situation were there are rising rates in many countries in Europe.
“We know that also something that comes with rising rates is increased risk of variants, [that’s] why it’s so important that we’re going to be able to test more rapidly for variants of concern.
“So I would say to people, just hold off. What matters for us at the moment is that we keep pressing on with our vaccination programme and we’ve got this tremendous situation where half of UK adults have been vaccinated.”
She added: “Look, let’s keep pressing ahead with that and the steps that we’re taking to control the virus here in the UK.”
A government taskforce is due to consider how international travel could work and report to the Prime Minister on the 12th of April.