Christmas is a time to spend with your family and friends. Yet, as life goes on, people move away from home, around the country, and sometimes even across the globe. If you’re one to usually travel around at Christmas, you’ll likely agree that last year wasn’t exactly what we’d asked Father Christmas for!
Yet, with talks of new variants and rising case numbers what will happen this year? Last year, ‘stay local’ was the message across the media, with a Christmas bubble allowed on the 25th of December, yet here at Travelbillity, we have collated all we currently know about the Christmas travel guidance for 2021. Make sure to read below for our guide.
Will We Be Allowed to Travel Around the UK for Christmas?
At the moment, the government has not revealed any plans to restrict domestic travel over Christmas and the festive period; however, Boris Johnson has announced that “this Christmas will be considerably better” than 2020.
Yet, it’s important to note that due to the current pandemic situation, some measures have been reintroduced as of Tuesday 30th November, including the mandatory wearing of face masks in shops and public transport in England.
The new strain of the virus has caused some alarm, more than the present varieties, yet when asked whether there is any chance of another lockdown before Christmas, Mr Johnson said “I’m pretty confident to absolutely confident this Christmas will be considerably better than last Christmas.”
The current measure will be reviewed in mid-December when more information is understood about the new Omicron strain.
How Protected Will We Be By Christmas?
It’s important to understand that most of the UK population will have been vaccinated by Christmas; more than 80 per cent of over 12’d will have received a second dose and nearly 30 per cent a third dose; in fact.
Millions of adults will also be offered booster jabs with an aim to save Christmas, prevent further restrictions and avoid any travel bans.
Will We Be Allowed to Travel Abroad for Christmas?
Again, this is something that is very hard to predict at the moment, until the government makes their decisions, especially with the varying levels of infections and other countries being at different stages of the vaccination process.
Europe has seen rising rates, leading to new restrictions and lockdowns. Austria was first to impose a nationwide lockdown, then Slovakia and the Netherlands has introduced a curfew for bars and restaurants.
Many countries are also starting to react to the spread of Omicron, such as Israel which has temporarily banned foreign visitors, along with Japan.
In terms of changes that the UK has imposed, the government has put 10 southern African countries on the red list. This includes South Africa, Mozambique and Namibia.
If you are thinking of travelling abroad this Christmas, we highly recommend you regularly check the status and rules for the specific country you have in mind. What’s more, anyone travelling back into the UK will need to take a PCR test by the end of their second day in the country, as well as self-isolate until they produce a negative test result.
Where are We Definitely Not Allowed to Travel to?
If you’re looking to spend your Christmas in the sun down under, then we are very sorry to say that Australia has decided to keep its international borders closed until mid-2022.
New Zealand is also not opening its borders to fully vaccinated New Zealand citizens in any other country until February 13th and foreign travellers on April 30th.
Christmas Travel Guidance 2021
With all the above being said, it’s important to remember where we have come since that day in early 2020 when the first lockdown was announced and the world stood still.
Whilst, of course, it is important to stay safe and stick to the correct restrictions, we can still spread festivity and make this Christmas as special as possible.
Christmas markets are on and other events are going ahead, so you can enjoy this quality time with your loved ones. Book a taxi, kick back and relax, and enjoy a few drinks with those most special to you.
Kian works for Travelbillity as a marketing specialist. He takes great pride in creating quality content for people looking for airport transfers or minibus hire.