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Weekly UK Media, Travel, Consumer & Social Update — 11 June, 2021

Weekly UK Media, Travel, Consumer & Social Update — 11 June, 2021
11 June 2021 Zac van Manen

Accurate as of: 9 June 2021 

Current UK status

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  • As of 4pm on 9 June 2021, a total of 186,996,151 coronavirus (COVID-19) tests have been conducted in the UK. 4,535,754 people have tested positive.
  • 40,710,319 people have had their first dose of the vaccination, while 28,540,844 have been fully vaccinated.
  • 152,289 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:

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  • Boris Johnson has laid out a roadmap out of lockdown, with the next touchstone to further open up the country on 21 June and a review of the travel green list every three weeks.
  • Currently, UK residents can only travel internationally 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.
  • 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.

Latest updates:

  • US President Joe Biden and Prime Minister Boris Johnson will discuss restarting transatlantic travel at a meeting on 10 June, but hopes of an imminent relaxation of restrictions have been dashed with agreement limited to establishing a taskforce on transatlantic travel. (Travel Weekly)
  • The bosses of oneworld, SkyTeam and Star Alliance have called for fully vaccinated passengers to be exempt from quarantine and for easily available, affordable Covid testing. The trio said the summit, in Cornwall on 11-13 June, should agree a common set of travel and health standards to enable the safe reopening of borders. (TTG)
  • Grant Shapps said today that international travel must be delayed to avoid ‘screwing up’ the UK’s recovery from COVID-19. The Transport Secretary said overseas holidays can’t go ahead until other countries catch up with Britain’s vaccination programme. (Travel Gossip)
  • The Scottish Government has cited “unknowns around the new Delta variant” in its decision to ban cruise ships from docking. The cruise ship MSC Virtuosa was prohibited from visiting Greenock port on 9 June, with the Government later confirming that all cruise ships will be banned until the country’s alert level is downgraded. (Telegraph)
  • One million Europeans have now obtained the EU’s digital Covid certificate for travel, Didier Reynders, the bloc’s Justice Commissioner, announced today. This figure was revealed as Britons were advised to take their summer breaks in the UK. (Telegraph)
  • Brits are turning to agents to help them lock in their winter getaways after the 2020/21 winter holiday season was almost entirely wiped out by Covid. According to Club Med, more than 20% of its bookings for the 2021/22 winter season have come from “new indirect clients”, with May trade sales for January 2022 up 43% on pre-Covid levels in January 2019. (TTG)

Social media:

  • Hardware first: Facebook is launching a smartwatch. While the plans aren’t confirmed publicly, according to The Verge the watch will debut next summer with two cameras you can disconnect from the frame on the wrist for taking photos and videos that can go straight to Instagram. Like the Apple Watch, the device will likely pair as a fitness tracker with a heart rate monitor. It’s Facebook’s second step into hardware, after the Oculus headsets, and will also apparently pair with their planned augmented reality glasses.
  • After last week’s heavy product rollout, Twitter’s adding a new ‘subscribe’ button straight to writers’ profiles that will plug into Twitter’s new Revue platform. Revue aims to be become Twitter’s Substack as they encroach on more niche tech offerings, like Clubhouse with Twitter Spaces, to satiate investors after a few lean years of returns.
  • Instagram chief Adam Mosseri took part in a Creator Week Q&A this week to chat through all things related to the IG algorithm, insights, and plans for the near-future. He says that best practices for Instagram right now are to lean into video with a strong two-second hook and to post two Feed posts a week and two Stories a day. He also reiterates to not buy fake followers and says that Instagram is looking to do more in the direct payments space to creators, like gated content or subscriptions.
  • Instagram’s chief also noted that the global rollout of Reels has been delayed courtesy of music licensing issues.
  • Related to Adam’s comments about direct payments, Instagram has announced new monetisation options for creators in the shape of a native affiliate program — currently in testing with a small pool of brands — as well as more ways to earn from Badges and Stars for streamers.
  • YouTube is now letting users add midrolls, end screens, and captions while their videos process. It seems like a simple change but it will help creators speed up their workflow as the processing part of the upload has no fixed timespan so, instead of guessing when it’s ready, you’ll just be able to do it all at once.
  • Following on from their partnership with Shopify, Google has launched a new integration with WooCommerce to help automatically sync WooCommerce users’ inventories across Search, Shopping, Image Search, and YouTube. That’s another 4.4 million merchants with easier access to the Google graph so don’t be surprised if your search traffic gets more competitive.

Need help navigating the UK’s changing reopening? Get in touch.