Holidays: Tourism Secretary ‘desperate’ to welcome Brits to Spain
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With leisure travel set to resume to some countries from May 17, many Covid-weary Britons might have their sights set on the summer months for their first escape of the year. While the Government’s “traffic light” system threatens some changes, with nations likely to move between “red”, “amber” and “green”, it seems Britons have their hearts set on some specific destinations.
Among them are traditional holiday hotspots France and Spain, which attracted 12.7 million and 18 million Britons on average annually pre-Covid.
Croatia, which saw a surge in popularity amid 2020’s travel corridors, is also proving a popular summer 2021 destination.
Booking.com regional manager Ryan Pearson spoke exclusively with Express.co.uk to share their insights into which countries Britons are gearing up to get back to.
“Almost a quarter of people intend to travel to the other side of the world by the end of 2021, if permitted, compared to only six percent by the end of 2020,” explained Mr Pearson.
“Britons’ desire for European breaks is still strong and in the top 100 most searched for destinations, Croatia, France and Spain are amongst some of the most sought-after international regions.”
However, it isn’t just Europe which jet setters are setting their sights on.
According to the Booking.com data, Dubai is one of the main long-haul destination’s which made its way into the top ten “most searched” holidays.
Barcelona, Malaga and Marbella in Spain, Paris in France, Rome in Italy Dubai, Sorrento in the Greek Islands, Split and Dubrovnik in Croatia and Marrakech in Morocco have all seen a surge in interest for holiday-hungry Britons.
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Of course, while international travel is set to resume, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said the “traffic light” system will remain under “constant review”.
This means it is likely countries that are categorised as “green” could end up on the “green watch list” if COVID-19 cases rise.
Though Mr Pearson said he is “optimistic” about travel in the summer months, he advised Britons to keep an eye on the latest “Government guidance” when booking.
“We are optimistic that an international getaway will be possible this year, particularly in light of the vaccine rollout, which we have previously said is crucial in order for travel – and the economy – to fully recover,” said Mr Pearson.
“However as always, people must adhere to the government guidelines at all times and take the official advice before booking trips or going away.”
The Government has not yet officially released its list of “green” list destinations, however, it is anticipated within the coming days.
Travel experts from across the industry have predicted the nations they think will make it onto the quarantine-free list, taking into consideration the Government’s “risk factors”, with Paul Charles saying most of Europe will make the list “by early June”.
While some long-haul destinations are predicted to appear on the “green list” by the peak summer months, it seems Europe continues to maintain its hold on UK holidaymakers.
In fact, Britons most-loved holiday hotspots remain some of the top destinations attracting searches according to the experts.
Mr Pearson concluded: “We know from our recent data that Brits’ desire for a European break this year is very strong, and is likely to be where Brits will head if of course permitted.”
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