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UK Media & Consumer Market Update — October 8, 2020

UK Media & Consumer Market Update — October 8, 2020
8 October 2020 Zac van Manen

Accurate as of: 8 October 2020

Current UK status:

Visit for all official information.

  • As of 4pm on 7 October 2020, a total of 24,081,522 people have been tested for coronavirus (COVID-19), of which 544,275 were confirmed positive.
  • 42,515 patients in the UK who tested positive for COVID-19 have died.
  • Local lockdowns continue in the North of England, Greater Manchester, Birmingham, Leicester, Blackburn, Oldham, Pendle and Bolton. New rules have also been put in place in Scotland.
  • A full Q&A regarding the UK lockdown rules can be found

UK travel restrictions:

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  • As countries respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, including travel and border restrictions, the FCO advises British nationals against all but essential international travel.
  • A 14-day mandatory quarantine for all UK arrivals except for those announced as exempt. See here for the full list of exempt countries. Countries can be added or removed from this list at any time. There are now only 6 countries on the list that do not require quarantine upon arrival or return.
  • FCO travel advice includes information on any health measures in place for visitors to a country or territory. These can include a requirement to self-isolate, quarantine or undergo testing for coronavirus, or even restrictions on entry.
  • All travellers entering the UK or returning to the UK must complete a comprehensive passenger locator form, or risk a fine.

Latest updates:

  • The government will be obliged to react to industry demands to outline a plan for the coronavirus-ravaged travel sector as signatories to the Save Future Travel petition soared in 24 hours. The petition hit more than 10,000 signatures today, and a response is expected soon (Travel Weekly)
  • Holidaymakers can go abroad confident their travel insurance will continue to provide cover if Foreign Office advice changes while on holiday so long as they followed the advice at the time of departure, the Association of British Insurers (ABI) has confirmed (Travel Weekly)
  • The launch of a Global Travel Taskforce ‘to open up international travel and boost our business’ has been confirmed. It will consider how a testing regime for international arrivals could be implemented to boost safe travel to and from the UK, what steps can be taken to facilitate business and leisure travel through testing and non-testing means and how to increase consumer confidence to support the recovery of international travel. Some companies are criticising the lack of detail provided, however (Travel Weekly)
  • The Summit Advisory Travel Business Barometer, produced by accountancy firm Elman Wall, found 45.2% of travel businesses said they were “surviving but hibernating” and 37.8% said they were also surviving but planned more cost-cutting. Data for September and October found only 1% said they were recovering, while 5% said they were “surviving but stable” and 2% “struggling to recover” (TTG)
  • EasyJet expects to make a loss of between £815 million and £845 million for the 2020 financial year due to the impact of the coronavirus crisis – the first annual loss in the airline’s 25-year history (TTG)
  • Turkey, Poland and Bonaire became the latest countries to be removed from the UK’s quarantine-free travel list last week, and Greece, Italy and Sweden are expected to be removed from the list this week (Telegraph)
  • Oliver Smith from The Telegraph says (in an opinion piece) that the government’s fear-driven approach to travel is killing jobs and destroying mental wellbeing (The Telegraph)
  • Ryanair has lost its court battle against the travel restrictions in place in Ireland. The airline claimed the quarantine measures were “unlawful” which require anyone entering the country to self-isolate for two weeks if travelling from a destination not on Ireland’s “green list” (The Sun)
  • Lonely Planet has named the top 500 travel destinations to visit in their 2020 Ultimate Travel List. The UK has the most entries on the list with a whopping 34 across Wales, England, Scotland and Ireland (The Sun)
  • Australia’s Treasurer, Josh Frydenberg, has said that authorities are working off the assumption that Australia’s borders will still be “largely closed off until late next year” (Mirror)
  • Visit Britain continues to track consumer sentiment on travel, some key current findings are (Visit Britain):
    • 58% of the UK adult population now feel ‘the worst is still to come’ in relation to COVID-19, the highest proportion recorded thus far and significantly higher than the 41% stated in early September. 10% think ‘the worst has passed’.
    • 29% of UK adults say they have taken a domestic overnight trip since the start of July. This is slightly higher than the 24% who intended to take a trip over the same period (when asked just prior to the easing of lockdown).
    • Trip purpose for both ‘intenders’ and ‘takers’ was most likely to be a holiday, although visiting friends or relatives (VFR) has higher representation for the latter, possibly suggesting these more spontaneous trips may be partly responsible for the uplift.
    • ‘Caravan/camping’ was the leading accommodation type used for holidays (39% share) followed by ‘hotel/motel/inn’ (32%).

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