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Jet2 suspends flights and holidays until late June due to 'uncertainty' over Govt plans
9 April 2021, 20:13
The chief executive of Jet2 has said the firm will suspend flights and holidays until at least 23 June due to uncertainty over the government's travel proposals.
Steve Heapy, CEO of Jet2.com and Jet2holidays, said: "We have taken time to study the Global Travel Taskforce's framework, and we are extremely disappointed at the lack of clarity and detail.
"After several weeks exploring how to restart international travel, with substantial assistance and input from the industry, the framework lacks any rigorous detail about how to get international travel going again. In fact, the framework is virtually the same as six months ago.
"Following the publication of the framework today, we still do not know when we can start to fly, where we can fly to and the availability and cost of testing. Rather than answering questions, the framework leaves everyone asking more."
He added: "Because of the continued uncertainty that the framework provides, it is with a heavy heart that we have taken the decision to extend the suspension of flights and holidays up to and including 23rd June 2021."
The government has confirmed a traffic light system will be used for international travel but there is still no fixed date for the return of foreign holidays.
The Department for Transport (DfT) has refused to confirm whether Brits will be allowed to go abroad for their holidays from 17 May or which destinations people can visit without self-isolating upon return.
The DfT said in a statement: "It is too early to predict which countries will be on which list over the summer, and the government continues to consider a range of factors to inform the restrictions placed on them.
"We will set out by early May which countries will fall into which category, as well as confirming whether international travel can resume from 17 May."
Assessments for the 'traffic light' system will be based on a range of factors: the proportion of a country's population which has been vaccinated, rates of infection, emerging new variants and the country's access to reliable scientific data and genomic sequencing.
These are the rules for each category:
- Green: There is no need to self-isolate. Take a pre-departure test and a PCR test on day two of your arrival in the UK.
- Amber: Self-isolate for 10 days, unless you receive a negative result from a test taken at least five days after arrival. Take a pre-departure test, and PCR tests on day two and day eight of your arrival in the UK.
- Red: Spend 11 days in a quarantine hotel. Take a pre-departure test, and PCR tests on day two and day eight of your arrival in the UK.
The plans have come under heavy criticism with the required PCR tests adding £120 per person on to the cost of a holiday.
Holidaymakers will have to take a PCR test after returning home and the £120 cost is more than double what they cost in some other European countries.
Industry leaders want people returning from low-risk countries to be allowed to take cheaper lateral flow tests.
This story is being updated