Travel

Everything you need to know about visiting Spain this summer

Playa de Formentor, Mallorca, Spain: istock
Playa de Formentor, Mallorca, Spain: istock

As countries around the globe tentatively begin to relax restrictions on travel, the promise of tapas al fresco and long, lazy sun-filled days beside the sea come top of the travel wish-list for many tourists.

Spain has long topped the list as one of the UK’s favourite holiday destinations, with more than 18 million British tourists visiting in 2019 – a fifth of the country’s overall total of nearly 84 million visitors, according to figures from the National Institute of Statistics.

But can British holidaymakers get there? And will we be welcome if we do?

Here’s all the information you need to know.

Am I allowed to travel to Spain from the UK?

At the moment, the Foreign Office is advising against all non-essential international travel – including to Spain.

The ban was initially put in place to avoid Britons getting stuck abroad as

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Everything you need to know about visiting France this summer

Getty
Getty

As tentative signs start to emerge of a revival for the travel industry, our minds are turning to potential holiday destinations for this summer.

France, as our closest neighbour barring Ireland, makes sense for a first international sojourn.

But can British holidaymakers get there? And will we be welcome if we do?

Here’s everything you need to know.

Am I allowed to travel to France from the UK?

At the moment, the Foreign Office is advising against all non-essential international travel – including to France.

The ban was initially put in place to avoid Britons getting stuck abroad as flight routes shut down; now that airlines are looking to restart summer flying programmes, this could change.

The FCO says its advice is under “constant review”.

Its advice doesn’t make travel abroad “illegal” as such – but it does invalidate your travel insurance and means you may find it tricky

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Bahamas reverses itself, will require COVID-19 test for tourists after July 1.

The Bahamas has reversed itself on COVID-19 tests for tourists.

After announcing that foreign visitors and Bahamians returning home will not need to obtain a negative COVID-19 test when the country reopens on July 1 to international commercial flights, Tourism and Aviation Minister Dionisio D’Aguilar told Parliament Wednesday that a negative test will now be required.

Last week Dr. Duane Sands, the former health minister who resigned amid the pandemic after a public quarrel with the prime minister, warned fellow lawmakers the country was taking chances by not expanding testing for the disease caused by the coronavirus. The country has registered 104 positive cases, of whom 72 have recovered and 11 have died.

“There has been much concern expressed about the re-opening of the country to foreign visitors — allowing them and Bahamians returning home, after 1 July, to enter the country without, I repeat without, some form of testing

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Southwest Boosts Safety Measures, Offers Tickets for $49

Southwest Airlines Co LUV will keep its middle seats open through at least Sep 30, 2020 in order to maintain physical distancing among passengers. However, customers have the option to choose their seats without the airline blocking or directing seating. Families or customers traveling in a group may also sit together.

Since May, Southwest’s customers have been required to wear face coverings or masks while aboard the aircraft. The carrier has added an important safety measure to boost confidence among travelers. Effective Jun 16, customers are being required to complete a Health Declaration before they become eligible to fly. In the Health Declaration, which needs to be acknowledged during the online check-in process, customers need to confirm that they do not have symptoms of COVID-19 and that they have not had the disease or have not been exposed to the disease in any way in the 14 days prior to

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How our obsession with meetings could be harming business

Now more than ever, business meetings need to be clear, concise and efficient if they’re going to be effective.

We’ve all been in bad business meetings. Time goes by slowly with seemingly little advantage to anyone, except perhaps the egos of determined presenters. The whole process can feel like an exercise in futility.

At their best, meetings enable staff to share ideas, develop strategies and ensure everyone involved has the necessary tools to ensure a business can run smoothly. Well-run and well-structured meetings clarify business aims and act as a rallying call to those involved, providing the impetus for a company’s direction of travel.

At their worst, meetings are an unnecessary drain of staff’s time and company money, sowing confusion rather than clarity, causing rifts in business relationships, and creating additional work with no tangible benefit.

The new normal

Even before the coronavirus pandemic shifted all business meetings online,

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Can I go on holiday this summer and will I have to quarantine?

For many, it felt like summer was cancelled as soon as Matt Hancock said as much on ITV’s This Morning back in early May.

“I think that’s likely to be the case,” the health secretary answered when asked if summer would be effectively “cancelled” for the first time since the Second World War.

But there are now glimmers of hope that something could be salvaged as Britain’s lockdown restrictions continue to ease. Here are your questions answered.

Will I be able to go on holiday this summer?

This is contingent on several factors: the current Foreign Office blanket ban on all international travel being lifted; the host country being willing to accept tourists from the UK; no quarantine being imposed upon arrival or return to the UK; the ability to get to the airport; and the ability to fly or otherwise travel to your chosen destination.

While the FCO travel

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These Massage Therapists Worry About the Effects of COVID-19 on the Future of Their Industry

While the pandemic has been difficult for many, for those who are in the business of touch, the pain of social distancing has cut a level deeper. Relying entirely on in-person, hands-on services, massage therapists saw their business wiped out entirely in the blink of an eye when social distancing became a nearly ubiquitous mandate.

While their business has been on ice, some massage therapists have already pivoted to new ventures, while others are holding the line until they can return to what they know best. Areefa Mohamed, a New York City-based massage therapist who has been practicing for 10 years now, relates all too well. She’s found herself completely out of work since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. “COVID-19 has affected me as a therapist because we are not physically able to help clients or to physically work. It’s a scary time and not being able to alleviate

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Pandemic Prompts Indie Hotels to Buy Ads in Price-Comparison Searches

The coronavirus pandemic has made many hotel companies more eager for direct bookings. Price-comparison websites are a significant source of such bookings, and new tools are making it easier for smaller hoteliers to ramp up their ad purchases on these metasearch brands.

Until now, independent hotels and regional hotel groups haven’t spent on metasearch. Yet some technological and cost barriers are falling away for smaller players. Plus, the sector’s revenue crisis has driven some desperate hoteliers to try new things.

“Many small hotels are operating at low capacity,” said Richard Clarke, a senior analyst at Bernstein Research who covers European leisure and hotels. “If I’m a hotel manager, I know I’m not going to be refurbishing the property. So I can use my extra time to see how to use metasearch to cut my biggest cost line after labor, which is distribution — which is about 30 percent hotel profitability.”

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Air bridges to be announced by end of June

Air bridges enabling holidaymakers to travel overseas without entering self-isolation when they return will be announced by the end of June, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has indicated.

The Government is “actively working” on introducing travel corridors, he told LBC Radio, amid widespread concerns the quarantine policy is crippling the travel and tourism industry.

“We won’t be in a position to announce which countries – where reciprocal arrangements go in place – until the 29th,” he said. “So don’t expect anything this week, I think I’m right in saying it’s only the end of next week.”

June 29 is the date for the Government’s first review of its controversial quarantine policy, which came into force last week, and requires most international arrivals into the UK to enter into self-isolation for 14 days.

It comes as much of Europe has this week reopened borders to allow travel within the EU Schengen Zone. … Read More

All your questions about travelling abroad answered

For many, it felt like summer was cancelled as soon as Matt Hancock said as much on ITV’s This Morning back in early May.

“I think that’s likely to be the case,” the health secretary answered when asked if summer would be effectively “cancelled” for the first time since the Second World War.

But there are now glimmers of hope that something could be salvaged as Britain’s lockdown restrictions continue to ease. Here are your questions answered.

Will I be able to go on holiday this summer?

This is contingent on several factors: the current Foreign Office blanket ban on all international travel being lifted; the host country being willing to accept tourists from the UK; no quarantine being imposed upon arrival or return to the UK; the ability to get to the airport; and the ability to fly or otherwise travel to your chosen destination.

While the FCO travel

Read More