The Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps has warned that holiday abroad will remain banned until “everybody” has been vaccinated, and said it is far “too soon” to book any trips. Under the current third lockdown all leisure travel is prohibited.
Shapps was asked by the BBC what must change for overseas travel to be allowed to resume. The Transport Secretary said, “First of all, everybody having their vaccinations.”
Shapps said that the travel ban will remain in place and said that Prime Minister Boris Johnson will set out a “road map” to ease the current restrictions on 22 February.
The Transport Secretary added, “It depends on both the level of vaccination here and, critically, elsewhere.
“We’ve done 13m plus vaccinations, which is just more than the whole of the EU put together.
“So we’ll need to wait for other countries to catch up as well in order to be able to do that wider international unlock, because we can only control the situation here.”
England’s deputy chief medical officer, Professor Jonathan Van-Tam told ITV News that more knowledge over the effectiveness of vaccines is needed, before the government can safely lift the ban on holidays.
Van-Tam cleverly compared the situation to a car on a “very steep hill,” with vaccines acting as the handbrake and restrictions acting as the footbrake.
“I don’t want to take the foot off the pedal in a rash and silly way until I know that the handbrake is holding,” he said.
However, people are booking their holidays for October throughout the winter and into summer 2022 it has been revealed, despite travel being illegal.
The travel agent Thomas Cook have been looking into peoples attitudes regarding travel and have revealed where the current hotspots are right now.
“It is very soft at the moment, but sitting underneath it is a demand for holidays that isn’t going to go away.
“You can book a holiday now, the industry is offering certainty with refunds and cancellations.”