British tourists not cancelling autumn holidays

in News · 31-07-2020 01:00:00 · 4 Comments

British tourists are not cancelling holiday bookings in the country in the autumn however concerns remain regarding travel restrictions and if the quarantine period for those returning from Portugal will be lifted by the UK.

Travel agencies that work with small groups are closely following the guidelines of the British government, which has so far maintained Portugal as a risky destination and advises against non-essential travel, but the sector hopes that Portugal will eventually be included on the list of countries exempt from quarantine on arrival in the United Kingdom.

John Dixon, director of Prestige Holidays, told Lusa news agency that their customers, especially the elderly, appreciate peaceful destinations like the island of Madeira.

Karl Watson, of Inntravel, an agency that offers packages with activities such as hiking or cycling in various parts of the country, also said that the company continues to maintain reservations for trips planned for September and October, but is not accepting new bookings.

“For now, we hope that the restrictions will be lifted soon. Otherwise, refunds will be offered or people can schedule for 2021”, he guaranteed.

For Noel Josephides, director of Sunvil Holidays, older tourists will avoid travelling if there are any health risks and admits that some decided to simply cancel or look for other destinations that have been considered safer, such as Greece.

Spain’s sudden exclusion from the list of countries exempt from quarantine upon arrival in the UK has added further uncertainty to the sector, which criticises the decision-making process of the Boris Johnson government.

“Why the hell is Portugal not on the list of corridors without quarantine? The [Portuguese] government has produced a convincing and carefully crafted document that describes the many steps they have taken to safeguard the Portuguese people and visitors,” said the president of the association of specialist AITO operators, Chris Rowles.

Highlighting mortality statistics in countries like the United Kingdom, Spain or Portugal, Rowles regrets the lack of dialogue with the authorities and questions the criteria to limit trips abroad, which are affecting the sector economically.

“The tourism industry does not want to put our customers or anyone else at risk, including destinations, on the contrary. But looking at the numbers, we think it would certainly be more dangerous to stay in the UK than to travel to countries like Portugal and Greece, with their very low numbers of Covid-19 and deaths”, he added.


The trouble in the UK is the links to the US where Covid 19 is rife.

By Audrey Von Ratta from Algarve on 03-08-2020 11:08

Its a disgrace that Portugal has not been included. We go to the algarve frequently. I've looked at the statistics closely, it is safer to be in the algarve than Britain. The UK govt need to get their act together on this issue.

By Mark Dorris from UK on 03-08-2020 08:25

The trouble in Portugal is the links to Brazil where Covid 19 is rife.

By Alastair J Tait from UK on 02-08-2020 12:22

I am due to visit the Algarve on the 20th August so I'm anxiously waiting an update regarding travelling there without quarantine and with the FCO approval.

By Maxine Cook from UK on 31-07-2020 10:39
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