Weekly UK Media, Travel, Consumer & Social Update — 9 April, 2021
Accurate as of: 9 April 2021
Current UK status:
Visit https://coronavirus.data.gov.uk/ for all official information.
- As of 4pm on 7 April 2021, a total of 128,712,320 coronavirus (COVID-19) tests have been conducted in the UK. 4,367,291 people have tested positive.
- 31,707,594 people have had their first dose of the vaccination, while 5,683,509 have been fully vaccinated.
- 126,927 patients in the UK who tested positive for COVID-19 have died.
- Guidance for the current lockdown rules in England can be found
UK travel restrictions:
Visit www.gov.uk/government/organisations/foreign-commonwealth-office for all official information.
- Boris Johnson has laid out a roadmap out of lockdown, with key touchstones to further open up the country on 12 April, 17 May and 21 June.
- Currently, UK residents can only travel internationally – or within the UK – where they first have a legally permitted reason to leave home. In addition, they should consider the public health advice in the country they are visiting.
- UK residents cannot leave their home or the place where they are living for holidays or overnight stays unless they have a reasonable excuse for doing so. This means that holidays in the UK and abroad are not allowed.
- In order to enter the UK, a negative Covid-19 test must be completed 72 hours before travel and presented to staff on planes, trains, and ferries in order to board. A further two tests must be completed at the travellers’ expense during their quarantine before they can return to day-to-day life.
- People entering the UK from high-risk countries, or “red” countries, will have to quarantine in a hotel at their own expense for 10 days.
- Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, has died at age 99. Married to Her Majesty The Queen since 1947, the Duke was the longest-serving consort in British history.
- Industry bodies voiced their frustration at the lack of clarity from the Prime Minister’s Easter announcement on travel on 5 April. Despite a broad welcome for the traffic lights approach, there was concern about how it will work and when it will be introduced. (TTG)
- Meanwhile, The Telegraph has written a handy list of everything we do know about 2021 summer holidays, to help battle some of the confusion. (Telegraph)
- Industry leaders anticipate a limited restart to international travel but hope for a wider and less restricted opening by the summer. The anticipated green list is predicted to become quite expansive by the summer, as the situation improves. (Travel Weekly)
- The government has been urged to keep the cost of testing for international travellers as low as possible. The call came amid speculation that the Global Travel Taskforce will propose that costly ‘gold standard’ PCR tests will be required for travellers on or before their return from “safe” countries. (Travel Weekly)
- Most travellers would be comfortable using some form of digital health pass in future, new research by Amadeus has revealed. Some 91% of the 9,055 travellers polled by Censuswide as part of an Amadeus study said they would be happy to embrace new health certification. (TTG)
- UK staycations may be just as expensive this summer as a trip to the Mediterranean. Prices for Airbnb accommodation in ‘desirable’ coastal destinations for July and August have risen 35 per cent, according to Which?. One Airbnb property owner in Brighton increased their price per night by 140 per cent. (inews)
- Virgin Voyages will make its long-delayed debut along the English coast instead of the Caribbean. The adults-only cruise brand has opted to sail from Portsmouth after cancelling inaugural summer sailings from Miami until September. (Travel Weekly)
- British Airways has announced two new island routes, launching on 25 June. BA CityFlyer will operate two flights a week from London City Airport to both Jersey and Gibraltar. (TTG)
- British Airways and Virgin Atlantic are pushing for the full opening of transatlantic (UK-US) routes from 17 May. The airline CEOs, joined by the CEO of London Heathrow, said the routes are essential for British business, and that they needed advance notice of what the government was planning to give them the opportunity to prepare for the reopening of the transatlantic routes. (Business Traveller)
- Facebook remains the second-most used social network in the US trailing only YouTube. New data from Pew Research, sourced from 1500 American interviewees, shows that only YouTube and Reddit saw significant growth from 2019 and that—unsurprisingly—Instagram, Snapchat, and TikTok remain popular with under-30s. Bear in mind that most social network growth has been outside the US lately, except for TikTok, especially as developing countries continue to connect people to the Internet for the first time.
- At the tail end of Twitter’s first Brand Bracket, Xbox has taken home the crown. The gaming brand edged out Skittles by 0.5% to claim the crown and has promised, as a result, to produce Xbox Series X mini-fridges. Personally, we’re holding out until Halo 6 for an Xbox but are getting pushed closer and closer to an early purchase.
- Staying with Twitter, they’re continuing to work on their ad offerings so brands can find the correct option for them. As such, they’ve rebranded their ad suite. Most SME brands will likely want to stick with the Promoted Ads but if you’re working with media a lot the Twitter Live options might be a good one too.
- A year ago, Twitter and Square CEO Jack Dorsey promised to donate USD$1 billion to charity in the wake of COVID-19. That stake in Square has now quadrupled so he’s got a looooong way to go before it’s finished being donated. Find out how he’s donating in real-time here.
- As the social networks realise they have to put their money where their users are, Pinterest is the latest to invest in its creators. The new USD$500k fund will provide support to creators from underrepresented communities and is currently only available to users in the US for now.
- For a long while, Facebook’s New Product Experimentation team has been putting out apps that might have potential. As Clubhouse has proven the viability of social audio, they’ve just launched Hotline to compete. It’s not available outside the US yet but stay tuned for its inevitable rollout.
- Want to take a Zoom call through your smart TV? Now you can. Some amount of WFH is here to stay for sure so perhaps the alternative to hunching over a laptop screen all day is to take calls from the comfort of the couch. Frankly, it does sound like an upgrade.
- Forget your card — simply scan a QR code to send some money via Facebook Pay. The test is limited to users in the US, where Facebook Pay remains a much larger utility, but Venmo has proven the viability of fast, digital funds transferring. One of WeChat’s many uses in China is funds transfers with QR codes so not really a surprise to see that functionality surface in the West after a lucky break for QR codes courtesy of COVID.
- Are you gunning to be the next Netflix? If your business hosts a ton of streaming video, now you can run Dynamic Ads for your catalogue like ecommerce businesses can for their products. Perfect for highlighting a particular selection for streamers with varied libraries to a vast audience of potential subscribers.