European president Ursula von der Leyen is warning that it’s too soon to start making holiday plans for this summer, even suggesting that countries might still have restrictions in place due to the coronavirus next year.
Even though some countries in Europe are already starting to ease restrictions on social life, transport and cross-border travel, the EC president said: “I’d advise everyone to wait before making holiday plans. At the moment, no-one can make reliable forecasts for July and August.”
Speaking to Germany’s Bild newspaper, she added: “We will need to learn to live with this virus for many months, probably until next year.”
At the moment, the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office is advising against all but essential travel for an indefinite period, which makes it almost impossible to buy travel insurance for any trip anywhere in the world.
Spain, one of the worst hit countries, has started to loosen its lockdown, allowing people working in manufacturing and construction to return to work, but most shops remain closed and there are still social distancing measures in place.
France is expecting to gradually come out of lockdown from mid-May, but President Macron has already said that bars, restaurants and festivals will remain closed until at least mid-July. He says France will maintain strict border controls until October and he wants the Schengen area border, which includes the most popular holiday destinations of Spain, Italy, Greece and Malta along with 22 other countries, to remain shut until September.
If you’ve already booked your summer holiday, you can find out your rights to a refund here. If you’re struggling to obtain a cash refund, this article explains how to make a claim on your credit or debit card.