Tag Archives: Reuters news

Holidays for the rich: Airlines slam Britain’s travel restart plan | Instant News



By Estelle Shirbon, Sarah Young LONDON (Reuters) – Airlines have slammed UK plans to restart international travel, saying expensive tests for travel to low-risk countries would mean only wealthy people could take vacations to the ‘foreign. displayed at a terminal at Heathrow Airport, amid the spread of the coronavirus disease pandemic (COVID-19), London, Great Britain, January 16, 2021. REUTERS / Toby Melville Travel resumes from May 17, a plan that has failed to meet the industry’s hopes for clarity. Airlines and travel agencies are in desperate need of a great summer after a year of restrictions. Without a high level of unlimited travel, some might struggle to survive or need new funds.The government has proposed a system of traffic lights, with countries falling into red, amber or green categories based on COVID risk. 19. Green countries will require a PCR test which costs around 100 pounds ($ 135) for travelers once they return to the UK. “This does not represent a reopening of travel as promised by ministers,” said Airlines UK, an industry body which represents the United Kingdom. Airways, easyJet, Ryanair, Virgin Atlantic and others. “This is yet another setback for an industry on its knees.” EasyJet, the UK’s largest passenger carrier, has stressed the requirement for PCR testing, which it says costs more than some of its fares, and called on the government to reassess its plan. “It risks turning the clock around and making flying only for the rich,” said Johan Lundgren, general manager of easyJet. Last 20 years and are among the top spending tourists in Europe. In 2019, more than six in ten Britons took a holiday abroad. Transport Minister Grant Shapps said the government wanted to make travel testing cheaper and suggested that over time the PCR test could be changed to a more affordable lateral flow test. As a government, we are committed to working to reduce these costs, and also eventually, of course, potentially reviewing the type of test, ”he told the BBC. “I’m not telling people they shouldn’t book a vacation now,” the government said in October, Shapps said. “This is the first time that I can say this in many months.” The number of cases in Britain has dropped dramatically from a January spike under a strict lockdown that banned holidays, but a government priority is to avoid undermining its success under the fire system signage, restrictions such as hotel quarantine, home quarantine, and mandatory COVID testing will apply differently depending on the passenger’s country of origin category. Identifying countries most at risk of going from green to orange, although the government has said it would not hesitate to change country categories if data shows the risk has increased. A digital travel certification system would also be part of the plan, but the proposals went into little detail beyond saying Britain wanted to play a leading role in setting standards. ($ 1 = 0.7310 pounds) Reporting by Estelle Shirbon and Sarah Young; Additional reporting by Michael Holden edited by Diane Craft, Robert Birsel and Nick Macfie.



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EasyJet CEO criticizes testing requirements in UK travel restart plan | Instant News



FILE PHOTO: Johan Lundgren, CEO of EasyJet, gestures as he speaks to media at Gatwick Airport, Britain June 15, 2020. REUTERS / Peter Cziborra LONDON (Reuters) – The Managing Director British airline easyJet has criticized some of the government’s plans to resume travel, saying COVID-19 testing should not be required for passengers traveling to low-risk destinations. UK airlines and the travel industry were disappointed with Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s warning on Monday that it was too early to say when international holidays could resume, which could lead to the opening being pushed back later than the current date of May 17. EasyJet chief executive Johan Lundgren said on Tuesday that many details were missing from yesterday’s announcement. and higher risk countries because red made sense, but traveling in green countries should not require passengers to take two COVID-19 tests. This is for me … because it could add costs and complexities, ”he told BBC Radio. He said the cost of COVID-19 testing sometimes exceeded the prices of easyJet tickets. “That means you wouldn’t open international travel to everyone. , you would open yourself up to those who could afford to pay it, ”he said. Asked if people could travel to popular destinations like Spain and Greece without restrictions by July and August, Lundgren said: “Yeah, I really think so. . He said easyJet was continuing to discuss the issues of reopening travel with the government. Reporting by Sarah Young; edited by James Davey.



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Australian Queensland warns of more COVID-19 cases, Easter travel plans on hold | Instant News



SYDNEY (Reuters) – The Australian state of Queensland warned on Tuesday that more cases of COVID-19 are expected to emerge as authorities work to contain an outbreak linked to the virulent UK variant, disrupting Easter travel plans. Tuesday, bringing the total for the latest outbreak to 15 so far. All of the cases were linked to two separate groups of viruses, one linked to a doctor and the other to a nurse, authorities said. “The fact that we have these linked cases is good news,” Queensland State Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said. . “Do we expect to see more cases? Probably. Probably we will see more. Brisbane, the state capital, was placed under a three-day lockdown until Thursday, forcing more than 2 million city residents to stay at home except for essential jobs, healthcare. health, grocery shopping or exercise. Holiday plans have been turned upside down for thousands as the lockdown is expected to end just a day before the Easter long weekend and spring break in Australia, a popular time for the holidays as several states have closed their borders with Queensland, while others will require travelers to have the virus. The hotspots to self-isolate for two weeks on their return. Brisbane Airport forecast a sharp drop in the number of domestic travelers passing through the airport by the weekend compared to its expectations before the lockdown. “This week we had forecast 35,000 to 40,000 per day. . However, today that number was closer to 15,000 and we expect it could drop to less than 10,000 per day by the weekend, ”a spokeswoman told Reuters. Neighboring New South Wales (NSW), Australia’s most populous state, is also on high alert after two of the Queensland cases, a nurse and her sister, unknowingly surrendered contagious in Byron Bay, a tourist town just south of the Queensland border and home to Hollywood A-listers such as Chris Hemsworth Health alerts have been issued for a hotel, cafe and restaurant exposed to the virus as people authorities urged customers to test and isolate. cases are emerging in NSW, but I won’t be surprised if we did. So we have to prepare, ”said NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian. Instant lockdowns, social distancing rules and speedy contact tracing systems have helped Australia contain new clusters in recent months. It has reported just under 29,300 cases and 909 deaths since the start of the pandemic ($ 1 = AU $ 1.3092) Renju Jose report; Edited by Richard Pullin.



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Australian Queensland warns of more COVID-19 cases, Easter travel plans on hold | Instant News



SYDNEY (Reuters) – The Australian state of Queensland warned on Tuesday that more cases of COVID-19 are expected to emerge as authorities work to contain an outbreak linked to the virulent UK variant, disrupting Easter travel plans. Tuesday, bringing the total for the latest outbreak to 15 so far. All of the cases were linked to two separate groups of viruses, one linked to a doctor and the other to a nurse, authorities said. “The fact that we have these linked cases is good news,” Queensland State Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said. . “Do we expect to see more cases? Probably. Probably we will see more. Brisbane, the state capital, was placed under a three-day lockdown until Thursday, forcing more than 2 million city residents to stay at home except for essential jobs, healthcare. health, grocery shopping or exercise. Holiday plans have been turned upside down for thousands as the lockdown is expected to end just a day before the Easter long weekend and spring break in Australia, a popular time for the holidays as several states have closed their borders with Queensland, while others will require travelers to have the virus. The hotspots to self-isolate for two weeks on their return. Brisbane Airport forecast a sharp drop in the number of domestic travelers passing through the airport by the weekend compared to its expectations before the lockdown. “This week we had forecast 35,000 to 40,000 per day. . However, today that number was closer to 15,000 and we expect it could drop to less than 10,000 per day by the weekend, ”a spokeswoman told Reuters. Neighboring New South Wales (NSW), Australia’s most populous state, is also on high alert after two of the Queensland cases, a nurse and her sister, unknowingly surrendered contagious in Byron Bay, a tourist town just south of the Queensland border and home to Hollywood A-listers such as Chris Hemsworth Health alerts have been issued for a hotel, cafe and restaurant exposed to the virus as people authorities urged customers to test and isolate. cases are emerging in NSW, but I won’t be surprised if we did. So we have to prepare, ”said NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian. Instant lockdowns, social distancing rules and speedy contact tracing systems have helped Australia contain new clusters in recent months. It has reported just under 29,300 cases and 909 deaths since the start of the pandemic ($ 1 = AU $ 1.3092) Renju Jose report; Edited by Richard Pullin.



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Analysis: COVID-19 setbacks in Europe risk another summer washout | Instant News



By Sarah Young, Laurence Frost LONDON / PARIS (Reuters) – European airlines and travel industry brace for lost second summer, with rebound hopes increasingly challenged by COVID-19 vaccine deployment hampered , the resurgence of infections and new lockdowns. Airlines and travel shares fell on Friday after shutting down Paris and much of northern France for a month, days after Italy introduced strong trade and movement restrictions for most of the country , including Rome and Milan. Setbacks have affected the recovery outlook for the crucial peak season, the profits of which typically push airlines up through the winter, when most carriers lose money even in good times. “If there is no confidence there, the demand just isn’t coming back,” said Dublin-based Alton. Aviation consultant Leah Ryan, who expects bad news about vaccines and lockdowns to hurt already low bookings.The summer outlook has also been affected by rising infections in Greece and elsewhere, and a suspension of the AstraZeneca vaccine by a number of European countries due to health concerns. . Several countries announced the resumption of use of the AstraZeneca bomb this week after the European Medicines Agency said the benefits clearly outweighed its risks. Airlines that have already racked up billions in debt are facing to additional stresses, as some may not survive without new funds. British Airways owner IAG on Thursday raised 1.2 billion euros ($ 1.43 billion) in a bond issue, saying the cushion would protect it from a protracted crisis. and Wizz Air, which can quickly redeploy planes between routes. But Ryanair’s domestic market expects to keep strict travel restrictions in place at least through June, Irish health official Ronan Glynn said on Thursday, citing the “deteriorating situation in the country.” international scale ”and the emergence of more contagious virus variants. IAG down 4% and easyJet and Wizz down 3.5%. Hopes of a rebound have pushed up travel inventories over the past month, driven by IAG’s 25% gain. While ultra-low-cost carriers may withstand another summer washout, analysts say rivals such that easyJet and Virgin Atlantic could face a renewed balance sheet. pressures. Air France-KLM is also seeking to raise capital and reduce debt from last year’s € 10.4 billion bailout. The Franco-Dutch airline group aims to fly more than 50% of its pre-crisis capacity this year, against 40 to 50% for Lufthansa – goals that could still prove to be ambitious. bankruptcies, especially by the end of the year, ”Alexandre de Juniac, head of the global aviation organization IATA, told Reuters. The latest boost in sentiment of recovery is spreading from airlines to hotel industries and the economy in general, penalizing Mediterranean countries dependent on tourism. . “The number of viruses is increasing, vaccine rollout is behind schedule and there is a risk that Europe will lose a second summer,” said Jacob Nell, economist at Morgan Stanley, predicting a “major blow to southern economies “. with optimistic messages from CEOs of US airlines, who this week reported an increase in spring and summer leisure bookings across the country, as the US vaccination campaign gained momentum and restrictions on coronavirus were relaxed. With its faster progress in vaccinations, the UK overseas market was seen as the key to the next peak season in Europe. But rising infection rates in Europe could also threaten those plans. Greece became the biggest source of imported cases from Britain when the countries opened a travel corridor last summer, according to an official British study released this week. Instead, the faster pace of vaccinations in Britain and the United States could lead to a transatlantic rebound – potentially overturning conventional wisdom that the short haul will recover first. “These two countries lead the G20,” with shots administered to 40% of the British population and a third in the United States, said UBS aviation analyst Jarrod Castle. “The North Atlantic could open up between (them) before other European markets, which would be very beneficial for British Airways.” ($ 1 = 0.8398 euros) Reporting by Sarah Young and Laurence Frost; Additional reporting by Conor Humphries in Dublin and Tracy Rucinski in Chicago; Editing by Susan Fenton and Bill Berkrot.



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