UK travel firms say holidays abroad will be back this summer

a group of people sitting at a beach umbrella in the sand: Photograph: Alkis Konstantinidis/Reuters © Provided by The Guardian Photograph: Alkis Konstantinidis/Reuters

The travel sector has dismissed a report warning against international travel this summer, saying customers are booking holidays from July onwards.

The UK ban on non-essential international travel is expected to be lifted on 17 May, with countries ranked under a traffic light system, despite the publication on Monday of a warning from a cross-party group of MPs against travelling abroad this summer.

The government has not revealed the green list – countries that UK holidaymakers will be allowed to visit without quarantining on return – but it is expected to be short and to only include a handful of EU countries initially. However, the travel sector is confident that popular EU destinations, such as Greece, Spain and Portugal, will be added by the end of June, allowing summer holidays abroad to go ahead from July onwards.

a group of people at a beach umbrella on top of a sandy beach: Wooden corridors installed on a beach in Athens, a day before the opening of beaches to the public following the easing of coronavirus measures. © Photograph: Alkis Konstantinidis/Reuters Wooden corridors installed on a beach in Athens, a day before the opening of beaches to the public following the easing of coronavirus measures.

“Holidays will be back on this summer,” said Thomas Cook spokesperson David Child. “Our bookings are 50% higher this week than last week.”

The operator is selling holidays from 1 July, with Greece proving the most popular destination and Spain in second place.


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UK travel firms say holidays abroad will be back this summer