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Global effect of the Covid-19 virus on tourism and other businesses

Important facts and and what you must do with Travel Insurance.
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Corona Virus, Travel and Holidays: Updated regularly in this fast moving situation.

LATEST:-
(Updated 7/5/21) Government announce green list of countries allowed to visit for holidays LATEST
(Updated 30/3/21) Its still illegal to travel from UK on holiday. Spain has announced it is opening up to tourism, upsetting many Spaniards who are still on lockdown and not able to travel themselves as existing and new variants of the virus infections are rising.
(Updated 22/3/21) With new variants of CoronaVirus taking hold in many countries and doubts as to whether the existing mRNA jab will be efficient against those new virus types, some countries like New Zealand are considering closing borders to all tourists from outside. Several other countries and no doubt, more to follow are considering the same as it will limit other variants entering and starting a new wave of infections. As many countries are seeing a rising third or fourth wave of infections and new virus variants, international tourism is looking very doubtful or at the best, very limited this year, vaccinated or not.

The past year of 2020 has been devastating for tourism and it would seem that going into 2021, the industry has yet a lot of pain to come. We expect many travel agencies, hotels and the smaller independent hospitality businesses that depend on tourism to not survive in 2021. For many countries, tourism is their economic life blood and for those places, the immediate future is very bleak.

This year its all going to be about internal holidays and travel for many previously popular tourist destinations as many countries have closed borders and even when they do open up to tourism, the quarantine restrictions placed on visitors will be impractical or off putting to many would be tourists. For example, a two week holiday abroad may not only involve a mandatory quarantine period on arrival at the holiday destination, but possibly a quarantine period in government appointed guarded hotels of up to two weeks depending upon testing results upon return to the UK at your own expense ( approx £1,600). As we have seen the Government seem to 'U' turn and change the rules constantly and as many have found out the hard way - while it was all okay when you left on holiday, by the time you return rules may have changed yet again leaving you stranded or forced into isolation on return. That more or less puts the dampers on any international vacations.

Vaccination passports will also become mandatory during the year which will further limit many would be tourists due to their well founded distrust of the Covid-19 vaccination due to past scandals committed by the pharmaceutical industry costing them billions in fines and compensation. It is after all, the first experiment of a radically new type of vaccine that has not been tested and trialed over the normal period of several years and with no idea of its short and long term effects. Many will also be concerned about contracting Covid and being hospitalised while abroad in countries where hospital resources and general health care is limited or extremely costly. Though it will not be until much later in 2021 that the majority of people under 60 will be able to have a vaccination passport, so will NOT be able to travel. Leaving mainly our elder vacationers only who will be going on holiday abroad.
And of course as we now know, the vaccination though lessening the effects of this Flu, it will not prevent you from contracting it or being contagious to others. To make matters worse, just like all the other Coranavirus's such as the common cold and other flu's, Covid is constantly mutating, hence why we have never been able to cure common colds and flu variants. Though on a more positive note, while colds and flu can be very nasty and uncomfortable, the mortality rate of Covid is only about 0.1% and primarily affecting the elderly or those with underlying health issues.

IMPORTANT. If you are traveling abroad, you must ensure your insurance will cover you against Covid and cancellations. You must ensure the travel agency is fully ABTA covered in event of closure. As many will fail this year.

So where does that leave tourism, holidays and travel in 2021? Pretty grim is the answer.
Globally, travel and tourism normally contributes over $9 trillion yearly and accounts for over 10% of the world’s total GDP. The industry has been devastated by 2020 and the financial pain is not going away in 2021 either due to lock downs and even after that, concerns will keep many from traveling.

Countries in Europe will fend better due to no passports and borders between them. Though expect there to still be some travel and other tourist spoiling restrictions such as gatherings, curfews and distancing. The UK though is an island with strictly enforced borders and no longer part of Europe, so 2021 is definitely going to be all about localized holidays. We expect a very busy local tourism season in the UK though sadly, devoid of the higher spending international tourists. Expect seaside towns and indeed all popular locations to be very busy and accommodation to be limited. Our travel team at Exclusive Travel have already seen a huge increase in UK based holidays and accommodation enquiries and bookings, especially more remote country locations as people who would normally travel abroad are either not allowed or feeling safer by holidaying in the UK.

On a final note. Whether your traveling at home or abroad here's a few facts and things you can do to help protect yourself from Covid or related effects.

1. Support your immune system with a healthy diet and a daily intake of multi vitamins and minerals. Especially those containing 'Zinc' which is vital to our immune system and sadly missing from most diets these days. It prevents viruses like Covid attaching themselves to your cells in the first place so lessening likelihood of infection. For those in less sunny places, vitamin D is equally essential to keep your body's anti-virus guns firing. These health supplements are available everywhere and not expensive and if everyone took them, millions of health issues and deaths would be saved each year. Your body is a finely tuned machine and needs a multitude of vital ingredients to live and function. So just like putting the wrong oil in a car, things will just not function properly without them.

2. Don't keep wearing the same mask for days on end after stuffing them into pockets or handbags. They will become a massive breeding ground and absolutely crawling with colonies of bacteria, germs and viruses which you are constantly inhaling. Masks should be changed or sterilized daily.

3. When not in close proximity to others, drop your mask down to allow fresh oxygen to clean and purge your lungs.

4. Remember that while normal masks can act as a barrier to large droplets from sneezes and coughs, they do not filter the far greater quantity of finer virus spores. So mask or not, if your in very close proximity to the breath of someone infected, the Covid virus can still infect you.

5. Do not do any exercising while wearing a mask even fast walking, as vital oxygen will be reduced and carbon dioxide increased which can cause hypoxia and if sustained, to anoxic brain injury, which is far more dangerous long term than any virus.

6. If you must travel abroad, research fully the present virus dangers of the destination and your accommodation. There are several far off countries, especially islands in the Caribbean that have very few Covid cases. Also ensure that your chosen holiday or accommodation is covered by delays or Covid-19 illness insurance.

From the Exclusive Travel team we wish you an enjoyable and safe holiday in these present concerns. Please take care of yourself and those around you.
For latest Government travel advice visit UK Gov Travel