'I'm going to Greece no matter what' – Telegraph readers on travelling abroad

Telegraph Readers
·6-min read
A passenger queues up to check in for a flight at Stansted Airport London, Britain, 01 July 2020. The UK government is set to announce that it is to form so called 'air bridges' with other countries so that people can go on holiday this summer. The global travel industry has been hit hard by four months of lockdown. Countries around the world are taking increased measures to stem the widespread of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus which causes the Covid-19 disease. -  ANDY RAIN/Shutterstock
A passenger queues up to check in for a flight at Stansted Airport London, Britain, 01 July 2020. The UK government is set to announce that it is to form so called 'air bridges' with other countries so that people can go on holiday this summer. The global travel industry has been hit hard by four months of lockdown. Countries around the world are taking increased measures to stem the widespread of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus which causes the Covid-19 disease. - ANDY RAIN/Shutterstock

It's been revealed that the Government's proposed air bridges scheme has been shelved with as many as 75 countries expected to instead be placed on a quarantine exemption list for British holidaymakers. 

The proposed air bridges scheme was expected to be unveiled this week but had already been pushed back due to reported objections from Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon. However, individual air bridges will now be effectively abandoned by the Government. 

Reflecting on the Government's travel policies, Conservative MP Theresa Villiers has claimed that the initial quarantine policy has "not been worth it" following the "damage" that it has caused the UK's travel industry

Telegraph readers have had their say on the Government's travel policies, the decision to ditch the air bridge scheme and whether they will be travelling abroad in the coming weeks. 

'Air Bridges are pointless'

@D Ti:

"Every airport in the world is part of an 'air bridge', aeroplanes are 'air bridges', always have been.

"It’s a phrase leapt upon by inexperienced and naive political players because it sounded important and good, like we were under siege and doing something about it. Outside a description of flight it is meaningless.

"It’s about time someone with some experience and common sense took over, a few airline and travel chiefs would suffice."

'You must be mad to fly'

@AC Sav:

"In all this chaos you must be mad to fly. Compulsory face masks, no hand luggage and the possibility of lockdown at your destination and quarantines.

"Remember all of the stranded people a few months ago crying for the government to send planes to bring them home? When you get to your destination you will probably have to queue outside shops and bars and wear compulsory masks in baking hot conditions. The grass is not greener."

'Should have reached this conclusion sooner'

@Elizabeth Kirkby:

"Why did the powers that be insist on mandatory quarantine measures at such a late stage at all, when the damage had already been done? Utterly nonsensical and unworkable. Also completely irrational and no more than a pathetic, panicked, attempt to look as though they were actually doing something.

"Why could they have not reached this conclusion regarding air bridges sooner - all they have done is dither, argue among themselves and caused complete confusion all round.

"Thank goodness, finally, there is a smidge of common sense somewhere. If common sense had been used in the first place, we would not be in the current mess. Unfortunately, common sense does not appear to be part of the job description."

'Quarantine was useless and pointless' 

@Alina:

"What a wonderful news! The quarantine in the UK is a useless, pointless, a mere cosmetic exercise which was created three-four months too late. A proper quarantine is when you are kind of detained somewhere near the airport for 14 days with no chance of going out to shops or pharmacy. 

"The UK quarantine is nothing similar. Some people were arriving just for 2-3 or 7-10 days and then travelling to another country. They were not forced to stay for 14 days at a specified address. It was a pointless and really very silly exercise at this stage. 

" It’s important to do a test before travelling and show the results at the airport. Temperature checks should also continue. Borders should open ASAP but more testing should be performed for travellers and those who are cleared should carry on with their business or holiday. "

'I won't be travelling and won't miss out on much'

@Lorna Brooks:

"Even though the air bridges have been shelved my husband and I won’t be travelling abroad until there is a vaccine. I am shielded and feel it is not safe to travel. Taking travel insurance out will not include cover for the virus.

"Not confident about having a ‘staycation’ either until the infection rates are all but gone. I live in South of England, previously north east Scotland, and summers are very good so feel we are not missing out in not going abroad."

'I am going to Greece - no matter what'

@Nigel:

"I am going with my civil partner to Greece for two weeks in August - no matter what. If it is quieter there but shops and eateries are open then it will be a welcome change from the shambles here."

'Let's starting by promoting domestic tourism'

@Stephen Gibson:

"There is an elitist obsession in the UK with foreign holidays.

"Every other country in Europe is promoting internal tourism. Italy has a tax reduction scheme for people to holiday sustainably in Italy. France is promoting the French to holiday in France.

"Britain is one of the most beautiful places on Earth. An enormous coastline and massive national parks.

"Everyone says they want to fight climate change. Well, lets start by promoting domestic tourism and discouraging foreign holidays.

"Many people in London and other cities have little experience of Britain at all. Roasting on a beach in Spain is not living at all."

'Travel industry should have been able to focus on preparation' 

@A M CASH:

"The mistake was  saying this was not the plan for months. 70 countries is a lot. Even if they had just said the plan was say to identify 20 plus countries, the travel industry could have focused on getting things ready and safe, rather than legal actions and redundancies."

'It was always an awkward concept'

@M Turner:

"The term 'air bridges' was always an awkward concept. It conjured up images of a spaghetti junction of airways. Simply 'open' and 'controlled' routes would have been better from the start."

'We could still be off to Portugal and Cyprus'

@Charlie:

"Because he is a fantasy golf whiz, my father won two golf holidays for our family - one to Portugal and one to Cyprus. As a result of this announcement, we think there’s a good possibility these could yet still go ahead."

'Another example of the Government backtracking' 

@Philip McTell:

"Whether 'air bridges' were a good idea or not, this government seems to cave and then backtrack on every decision it takes.

"This would surely suggest weak leadership at the very heart of government. How reassuring."

What do you think about the Government's travel policies and will you be travelling abroad in the coming months? Let us know in the comments section below.