As I wrote in my last post, countries and states within countries are becoming more and more eager to resume normal travel arrangements, despite the fact that the coronavirus continues to rampage across the globe and new “hotspots” are cropping up all the time. India, Brazil and Mexico are all struggling to mitigate the virus at the moment, and the United States … well, we know about them.
The virus isn’t done killing people yet, which explains why many schools and universities around the world remain closed, and online tutoring is still the order of the day.
Nevertheless, the show must go on. Thus, Hawaii is trying to set up travel arrangements with Australia among other countries. The same sort of thing is taking place in Europe. As Forbes reports, the United Kingdom is getting ready to waive quarantine protocols for people arriving from Spain, Italy, France, Greece and others that have a grip on the virus.
That reportedly does not include the United States (shocker), Portugal, Sweden, or Croatia. It’s curious that Portugal is being excluded, seeing as it has less than 41,000 total coronavirus cases, whereas Spain has almost 300,000. As for Croatia, they’ve got a total of about 2,500. Figure that one out.
This information comes from leaked official documents, which show “that France, Italy, Greece, Spain, and Bermuda, as well as Gibraltar, and Belgium, Austria and Germany and the Netherlands will be included in the first” phase, according to travel expert Simon Calder.
That first phase is reportedly right around the corner, sometime in early July. The second phase will go into effect in August and include “medium haul destinations” like Dubai and Turkey. Then, toward the end of the summer, a third phase will include “long-haul destinations” like Hong Kong and Singapore.
People from the United States will have to wait until the end of the year, and perhaps longer, according to the leak.
The BBC reported that discussions are underway to open a travel bubble with Australia as well, but provided no details.
The UK has the most COVID-19 cases in Europe with about 310,000. It also has the most deaths with more than 43,000.
On Thursday PM Boris Johnson, who nearly died from COVID, issued a warning to Britons after images of jam packed beaches made the rounds on television and social media.
“You may think you are not going to get it, that you’re immortal and invincible and so on—and very likely that’s true if you are young person,” he said, despite many, many reports of young people becoming seriously ill from the disease. “But the bug you carry can kill elderly people particularly. It is still dangerous; the virus is still out there.”