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Foreign holiday spots are ALREADY filling up after PM says trips may start from May 17 – here’s how to get best deals

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AIRLINES and tour operators are seeing holiday bookings soar following Boris Johnson’s road map for how coronavirus restrictions will be eased.

The Prime Minister said yesterday in his announcement that foreign holidays could resume by May 17, with an official start date to be announced in April.

EasyJet, TUI and Thomas Cook have all seen a jump in bookings

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EasyJet, TUI and Thomas Cook have all seen a jump in bookingsCredit: EPA

However, this is only the earliest they could start, with a more likely date to be from June 21 – but this has already seen holiday hotspots booming and selling out.

In the hours after the announcement, easyJet said bookings by UK customers for the summer season were more than four times higher compared with the same period during the previous week.

They reported a 337 per cent surge in flight bookings and a 630 per cent jump in holiday bookings.

The most popular destinations for this summer are beach resorts including Malaga, Alicante and Palma in Spain, Faro in Portugal and the Greek island of Crete.

August is the most booked month, followed by July and September.

EasyJet chief executive Johan Lundgren said: “We have consistently seen that there is pent-up demand for travel and this surge in bookings shows that this signal from the Government that it plans to reopen travel has been what UK consumers have been waiting for.

“The Prime Minister’s address has provided a much-needed boost in confidence for so many of our customers in the UK with demand for flights up 337% and holidays up 630% already compared to last week and beach destinations proving most popular for this summer.”

  • Spain holidays with TUI from £299pp – find here
  • Majorca holidays with easyJet from £296pp – find here
  • Fuerteventura holidays with easyJet from £258pp – find here
  • Greece holidays with Jet2 from £299pp – find here
Foreign holidays may be able to resume from May

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Foreign holidays may be able to resume from MayCredit: EPA
Crete is one of the most popular destinations being looked at

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Crete is one of the most popular destinations being looked atCredit: Getty Images – Getty

When will UK holidays resume?

  • April 12 – self catered holiday homes can be let to single households
  • April 12 – decision on foreign holidays to be announced
  • May 17 – hotels reopen and holiday homes can be let to groups of up to six people from different households or groups from two households with no cap on size
  • June 21 – holiday homes can be let to groups of all sizes

He added: “While the summer may be a little while off, we will be working around the clock to ensure we will be ready to ramp up our flights to reconnect friends and family or take them on a long-awaited holiday to remember.”

Families wanting the best deal should book sooner rather than later – as higher demand will lead to reduced capacity, which means high costs.

Booking holiday packages is also advised, as they offer more protection if your holiday doesn’t go ahead unlike airlines.

Emma Coulthurst from holiday price comparison site TravelSupermarket previously said: “Once quarantines are cut dramatically or completely and there is cheap and widely available testing and an extensive roll-out of covid vaccines, there are unlikely to be the rock bottom prices which you can currently snap up.”

Jet2 has seen an increase in bookings of 600 per cent compared to this time last week with Spain, Portugal, Greece, Cyprus and Turkey the most popular.

Thomas Cook has also seen traffic to their website jump by 60 per cent following the announcement.

Alan French, Thomas Cook CEO, said: “The government’s announcement today is good news for those of us desperate to get away on holiday.

“While we await more details, it’s clear that the government’s ambition is to open up international travel in the coming months and hopefully in time for the summer holidays.”

TUI also reported that they had had their best day of bookings in over a month, with the most popular destinations being Greece, Spain and Turkey.

UK holidays will be able to resume from April 12, but only at self-catered accommodation and for one household.

From May 17, hotels will be able to open, with holidays for up to two households or the rule of six from more than two households.

From June 21, there will be no restrictions on travel.

Boris Johnson announces restart dates for holidays in the country as part of his road map out of lockdown

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