With the travel industry readying up to return to some form of normality, holiday-lovers everywhere are getting increasingly excited at the prospect of being able to visit dreamy destinations around the globe once again. But one question most want to be able to understand prior to that point is how different travelling might be in a post lockdown world.
How will our experience at the airport or on the plane change? Will restrictions be in place at the hotel or during days at the beach? What will we have to do differently upon arrival back in the UK?
Our team have pulled together a breakdown of some of the adaptions you should expect once borders reopen and holidaying resumes.
When arriving at the airport, travellers will be expected to follow the usual measures in place when visiting the supermarket for example, including adhering to social distancing rules, wearing face masks and refraining from touching things that either aren’t yours or you don’t intend to buy, such as pre-flight food or duty free goods.
It was announced by the European Commission last month that airlines and airports should reorganise the check-in, drop-off and luggage pickup areas to avoid the build up of crowds as efficiently as possible, whilst one airline marketing consulting firm suggested ‘disinfectant tunnels’ could be used, an invention that sprays sanitisers onto passengers and their bags.
For this reason, you may find that you will queue for longer, so it’s best to get to the airport extra early in order to ensure you have plenty of time to spare.
Various measures were also communicated by the European Commission in terms of passengers’ expected behaviour whilst flying, which includes keeping luggage and movement in the cabin to a minimum, as well as the continued use of face masks and keeping hands clean with an effective sanitiser product. Some airlines have announced plans to block the middle seat of planes in order to ensure travellers maintain social distancing procedures whilst in the air, and new boarding and deplaning processes will also be in operation to that point.
Each airport and airline has their own detailed plans in place to set passengers’ expectations prior to travel, so for more comprehensive information make sure to check the guidelines conveyed by your local airport, and the airport of your intended destination, as well as the airline you’ll be flying with.
As with airports and aeroplanes, the standard social distancing measures could be in place in hotels when on holiday, as well as the expectation that guests regularly wash their hands, certainly in the short term, though exact rules alter slightly dependent on the destination.
Spain recently announced a four-phase plan to ease lockdown restrictions by July, with staff wearing PPE asked to vigorously clean and disinfect areas of the hotel multiple times a day. It is thought there may also be a ban on buffet-served food in hotels across parts of Europe.
Staggered dining hours have been suggested, whilst some hotels are installing screens between tables and staff will be instructed to deliver room service wearing masks and gloves.
The luxury hotel chain Sandals has gone one step further be releasing a video which highlights its 'Platinum Protocol of Cleanliness' including remote check in, special training for staff and hand sanitising stations in public areas. Check out the below video for more:
An important part of holidaying is being able to head to the beach for relaxing days on the sun lounger and plenty of other seaside fun. Most will reopen with social distancing measures, with the Greek government announcing a maximum of 40 people per 1,000 square metres will be permitted and umbrellas set four metres apart.
Sun beds will be regularly disinfected, and some countries, including Italy, have said ropes will form a physical cordon between beachgoers, whilst in Spain, following a temporary ban, bathers can now take to the water for individual exercise or aquatic sports.
Clearly it is hoped that providing Brits follow the various personal hygiene and social distancing guidelines when holidaying, all will return home safe and well, though there are certain preventive measures that are likely to be put in place when travelling back.
Holidaymakers will be asked to go straight home from the airport and avoid using public transport if at all possible, though self-isolating is not expected to be imposed assuming each returning passenger is not experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms.
Which destination will be your first port of call post lockdown? Let us know where you want to travel to by tweeting @icelollyholiday!
Published on 8th September 2017
Published on 14th September 2017
Published on 5th September 2017