All the dates for your diary if you’re thinking about a holiday this year.
With England’s roadmap out of lockdown now unveiled, attention is quickly turning to when we can enjoy the freedoms we’re soon scheduled to get back. Naturally, with several months of confinement in the rear-view mirror (and several weeks still ahead), holidays are near the top of the priority list for us. So, with the roadmap as our guide, here’s the answer to the question we’re all asking: when can I go on holiday again?
Technically, there are actually several answers to this question, depending on your living situation. The first date for your diaries is April 12 – the first possible start date for Step 2 of the roadmap out of lockdown – when holidays lets will be permitted once more. However, there’s a specific condition attached to this; the holiday can only be taken on your own or as part of your household. If you’re seeking a change of scenery and some solitude, or aren’t completely fed up of seeing the same people for the past several months, then a holiday could be on the cards for you by this time.
The next date to be aware of for your holiday is May 17: the current expected start of Step 3. At this stage, overnight stays will be permitted and hotels, hostels, and BnB’s will all open, heralding the true start of staycation season. As limits on indoor social contacts will remain – two households or a group of six will be allowed to meet indoors – it won’t be the time for a huge group getaway with the squad, but it’ll offer us the chance to escape with some close contacts for a while.
International travel is a slightly different prospect, and one with a slightly more uncertain timeline. It’s currently illegal to leave the UK for a foreign holiday, and there is no set date for that to change. However, in today’s address to Parliament, Boris Johnson revealed that a review of international travel will take place (conducted by a ‘Global Travel Taskforce’) to investigate the feasibility of resuming overseas breaks.
The taskforce is expected to report back by April 12, which means Step 3 could be the first stage at which international travel to certain destinations resumes. That’s May 17 again, although I’d advise you to take it with a pinch of salt given the level of investigation needed between now and then (and that’s without mentioning possibilities like travel quarantines and vaccination requirements for travellers, which could further complicate the picture).
Finally, there’s June 21: the start of Step 4. By this stage, the government is hoping to remove all legal limits on social contact and have every sector of the economy back up and running, potentially giving us complete freedom to holiday anywhere in the UK, and hopefully abroad. There’s a lot to do in the interim – including the continued vaccine rollout, and meeting the government’s four tests (read about them here) – but hopefully we can all pencil in a holiday before July rolls around!