COVID-19 and European travel
European Travel and the coronavirus
Should you plan a trip to (or within) Europe in 2021? We're inclined to say "Yes," if the COVID-19 pandemic has been contained, but don't plan your trip without reading our updates and advice.
Ever since COVID-19 spread from China to Northern Italy in February, 2020, tourism in Europe has taken a massive hit. Flights have been cancelled, entire countries have been locked down by quarantines, and travelers have been worried--with good reason--about Europe's ability to cope with a pandemic.
Here's our advice:
1. If you were planning a trip, be prepared to cancel or reschedule.
No one knows when the pandemic will end. Although most European countries are opening up to tourists from within Europe and the UK, the reopening process will be gradual for visitors from abroad--particularly for travelers from countries (such as the U.S.) where COVID-19 infections have yet to subside.
Also, a "third wave" of COVID-19 is already driving some countries or regions back into lockdown.
The European Union's Re-open EU Web site has up-to-date information about travel restrictions in 24 languages.
Just as important, it will take a while for international transportation services (especially airline routes) to return to anything resembling normalcy.
2. It's not too early to think about travel in 2021.
The coronavirus pandemic won't last forever. Once enough people have been vaccinated, the spread of COVID-19 could ease, and you'll be in a better position to make plans.
as airlines, hotels, rental firms like Airbnb, tour companies, cruise lines, and destinations try to make up for a disastrous 2020.
Still, we do suggest precautions:
If vaccination efforts are successful and the coronavirus pandemic eases , the secnd half of 2021 could be a great time for European travel, thanks to discounts and smaller crowds as visitors slowly trickle back to popular tourism sites.
However, the situation could change, so build as much flexibility as possible into your travel plans.
Also, if you're in a high-risk group, don't take chances with your health--or your life.
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