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Travel

Campsites in England will finally be able to reopen on July 4th

Everything you need to know…

Alex Watson

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The latest update from the government means campsites will be able to reopen from July 4th with good hygiene in communal spaces.

Campsites, caravan parks, hotels and B&Bs were all given the green light in the latest lockdown easing announcement from Boris Johnson on Tuesday June 24th.

Speaking at the House of Commons yesterday he said people would be able ‘to stay overnight in self-contained accommodation’. He added that shared facilities must be kept clean and no more than two households can go away together at a time.

He said: “Provided that no more than two households stay together, people will be free to stay overnight in self-contained accommodation including hotels and bed and breakfasts, as well as campsites, as long as shared facilities are kept clean.”

Emmanuel Maceda/Unsplash

Campsites and caravan parks in England will have to follow strict COVID guidelines to ensure the safety of both staff and customers. Guests will also have to respect social distancing measures.

Currently, there are different opening dates across England, Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland, however campsites and caravan parks are expected to reopen across the UK this summer.

In England, tents are required to be pitched at least two metres away from each other and some facilities will remain closed.

Northern Ireland’s campsites, caravan parks and self-contained tourist accommodation can reopen from June 26th. The hospitality industry – restaurants, cafes, pubs and bars –  will reopen on July 3rd.

Scotland’s campsites and caravan parks are scheduled to reopen on July 15th but this date could be reviewed.

And finally, in Wales, self-contained accommodation will be allowed from July 13th, subject to a final decision made on July 9th. Any accommodation that requires shared facilities such as toilets will remain closed. 

Ryan Chua/Unsplash

The change comes into affect on July 4th in England, along with a pretty large list of other lockdown restrictions that will be lifted on the same date. 

From July 4th, two separate households are permitted to meet up indoors. Boris explained that this means you can meet indoors with one set of grandparents one weekend, and another the next.

Unfortunately, you still can’t hug and you should continue to practise social distancing following the 1m+ guidance (or 2m if you can). You should also practise regular hand washing. 

Boris Johnson also added that the government are relying on the public to use their ‘common sense’ regarding the guidance but simultaneously urged them to enjoy the new range of activities now on offer. 

Customers at bars and restaurant will be expected to sign guest books with their names and contact details to allow them to be traced if they came into contact with someone infected at the restaurant.

Danielle Cerullo/Unsplash

On July 4th, gyms, nail bars, swimming pools, spas, indoor play areas will all remain closed, unfortunately. 

Schools will be reopened for all in September, however, it remains that years reception, one and six are allowed to go to school in England fully. 

Wedding receptions with up to 30 people will be allowed from July 4th as places of worship reopen. Unfortunately, your reception must follow the same rules followed by the hospitality industry such as pubs. 

Trips to indoor hospitality venues should only be with one other household, making wedding receptions nearly impossible. This applies to baptisms, Bar Mitzvahs and any other ‘life cycle events’. 

Non-essential overseas travel is still not advised by the Foreign Office and since June 8th, anyone returning to the UK must quarantine for 14 days. 

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Travel

Benidorm launches cheap seven-night package holiday scheme including food and drink for just £180

This looks great…

Alex Watson

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Reuben Kim & Jordan Sanchez /Unsplash

You can stay for a week in Benidorm with food included for just £180 in the new scheme. 

The ban on travel throughout the lockdown has caused the popular holiday destination to suffer, enhanced by the 14-day quarantine after travelling. 

The new scheme in the resorts, starting on October 14th, gives tourists a choice of where to stay and where to eat in the seven-night deal.

The only thing you’ll have to arrange on your own is your flights out to Benidorm, but deals start at £200 a return ticket. 

Igor Starkov/Unsplash

The scheme has been launched by two trade associations, Abreca and Cobreca representing bars and restaurants plus Rosemberg Real Estate Agency and the Nicaragua Apartments.

They said in a statement: “This project is the result of the essential synergy between all the business sectors of the city and it will be a pioneer in Europe offering visitors to enjoy all the gastronomic offer of our city.

“The tourist will have a complete experience of Benidorm, being able to stay in apartments of Real Estate Rosemberg or Apartments Nicaragua and have breakfast, lunch and dinner in any bar, restaurant and cafeteria member of Abreca and Cobreca and adhered to this project.

Attila Surányi/Unsplash

Benidorm could also be launching the new ‘Benidorm Island’ scheme which hopes to create an effective ‘island’ on mainland Spain.

It will encourage Brits to the resort, offering testing and new safety features like a ‘safe’ coach that transfers holidaymakers directly to their holiday accommodation from the airport. 

In the day a ‘Hospitality Team’ would monitor the tourist’s health.

Currently Brits must self-isolate for two weeks after returning from Spain plus other countries on the list.

Chief Secretary to the Treasury Stephen Barclay confirmed the new measures that will include swabbing at the airport.

Raygar He/Unsplash

Mr Barclay explained: ““I am expecting Grant Shapps and Matt Hancock to say more about this in the coming days.

“If we look, for example, at some of the German states, which are using testing to then release earlier from some of the restrictions.”

The current two-week quarantine period could be reduced to four days with two mandatory tests. 

This week, a duo from Ashton-under-Lyne returned from Spain and refused to isolate and were both lumped with £1,000 fines

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Travel

People visiting Wales from Greater Manchester might have to self-isolate for two weeks on arrival

Just in…

Alex Watson

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David Dixon/Geograph & WelshGovernment/Twitter

Visitors travelling into Wales from areas in the UK with high rates of coronavirus might have to self-isolate on arrival, according to the Welsh government.

Welsh authorities are deliberating the possibility of enforcing the restrictions currently used on international arrivals on arrivals from people across the UK, including from Greater Manchester.

Health Minister Vaughan Gething said in a press conference on Monday: “We’re actively considering what we should do and I’ve discussed it this morning with the First Minister.

“We have quarantine regulations for international travel.

“So for some of the hotspot areas in the north of England, the North East and North West, and the West Midlands, if they were other countries or territories, we would have quarantine regulations for them to return to the UK.”

He added: “We’re having to consider how we use our power to protect lower-prevalence areas of Wales but at the same time, we don’t want to take a whole-nation approach.

“There’s no good reason to prevent someone from Devon, at this point in time, coming to visit a pre-booked holiday or trip to Pembrokeshire.

“So we are thinking about how we use something that is proportionate and deals with the reality of the threat that we face.”

The decision will be made later today, Gething added: “We’ll need to take some advice from our scientific and medical advisers, public health advisers, and we’ll then need to consider whether this is the right course of action.

“Because the measures we’ve introduced in Wales are about isolating areas with a higher prevalence of coronavirus and protecting lower prevalence areas too.

“It’s consistent with the approach that all four UK nations have taken to international travel and quarantine restrictions, where we recognise that higher prevalence areas in other parts of the world represent a risk to coronavirus being reimported or having an opportunity to spread further within the UK.”

First Minister Mark Drakeford sent a letter to Boris Johnson asking for travel restrictions to apply to areas of England under local lockdown, however, Gething explains that it is ‘disappointing’ he has not replied.

Gething added: “Over the last month, we’ve seen a rapid increase in cases across Wales – the virus returned as people came home from holiday abroad and has been spread also as people socialised without social distancing crucially and most often in people’s home.

“The majority have had a mild illness so far. But an increase in cases is followed within two to three weeks by higher hospital admissions, higher critical care admissions and more deaths.”

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Travel

Luxury safari lodges where you can see elephants from your bed to open down the road from Manchester

Some exciting news to look forward to…

Alex Watson

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West Midland Safari Park

These luxury safari lodges will give you an up-close and personal overnight wildlife experience like no other available in the UK next year.

There will be eight lodges, six of which will look over elephant habitats while two will look over views of majestic cheetahs.

The lodges are set to open on West Midland Safari Park, just two hours drive from Manchester, next year.

They will be decorated along with the safari theme, including thatched roofs and a strong neutral palette. The lodges will also have open-plan living with a dining area, bedrooms and a bathrom, complete with terraces to enjoy the views. 

West Midland Safari Park

Upstairs will see a bedroom which will offer spectacular views across the elephant habitats, and guests will be encouraged to make use of their outdoor terrace to enjoy their meals.

There will also be floor-to-ceiling windows so you can get up close and personal with the animals from the comfort of your sofa or bed.

Guests will be treated to extra perks like chefs to cook meals, free admission to the safari park and attractions plus exclusive views of the animals.

Park bosses are anticipating a new open date in February, after it was pushed back due to the pandemic.

West Midland Safari Park

The newly appointed Accommodation & Venues Director said: “This amazing project will grow into something spectacular over the next four to five years, but to start with we are focussing on the elephants and cheetahs.

“Not only will the new lodges offer guests the opportunity to stay onsite overnight for the first time, they also allow us to create upgraded, stimulating and enriching environments for the animals.

West Midland Safari Park

“Conservation is at the forefront of our minds when designing and building the lodges, so as part of this project, our net biodiversity gain will increase by 30%, creating more habitats such as woodlands and wildflower meadows, encouraging native wildlife.

“Revenue from the lodges will support improving the facilities for more of the Park’s amazing animals, as we work towards the next phases of development.”

You can find more info on the website here.

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