Weekly UK Media, Travel, Consumer & Social Update — 26 August, 2021

Weekly UK Media, Travel, Consumer & Social Update — 26 August, 2021
26th August 2021 James Brooke

Weekly UK Media, Travel, Consumer & Social Update — 26 August, 2021

Accurate as of: 26 August 2021 

Current UK status

Visit https://coronavirus.data.gov.uk/ for all official information.

  • As of 4pm on 25 August 2021, a total of 260,063,891 coronavirus (COVID-19) tests have been conducted in the UK. 6,590,747 people have tested positive.
  • 47,792,522 people have had their first dose of the vaccination, while 42,865,264 have been fully vaccinated.
  • 155,465 patients in the UK who tested positive for COVID-19 have died.

UK travel restrictions:

Visit the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office website for all official information.

  • The UK government has amended its travelling abroad policy, so that travellers no longer need a ‘valid reason’ to travel abroad, opening up international trips to holidaymakers.
  • In order to enter the UK from a green list country (or an amber list country for fully vaccinated Brits), 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 test must be completed at the travellers’ expense before day two of their return.
  • In order to enter the UK from an amber list country, 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. For unvaccinated travellers, a further two tests must be completed at the travellers’ expense on days two and eight, and they must self-isolate for 10 days. Fully vaccinated travellers do not have to self-isolate, and simply need to take a day two test upon return.
  • 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:

  • The Independent has predicted the upcoming changes to the traffic light list in this week’s announcement, predicting Poland could move to the green list, Turkey has a 50/50 chance of going amber, and Spain most likely to stay amber. (Independent)
  • Private companies that sell Covid-19 tests to holidaymakers have been told to “get on the right side of the law” by the competition regulator, after widespread allegations of poor service triggered a government crackdown. (The Guardian)
  • Self-catered accommodation in the UK costs on average 40% more than it did in summer 2019, according to research by consumer group Which? and the BBC’s Panorama. The study suggests holidaymakers are paying an average of £300 more per week in August than they did before the pandemic. (Travel Weekly)
  • World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) is calling on US authorities to approve the AstraZeneca vaccine to help rescue transatlantic travel between the UK and US. The US’s Centre for Disease Control (CDC) has yet to recognise the AstraZeneca jab, which has been given to millions of Britons over the past few months, as an approved Covid-19 vaccine. (TTG)
  • Online travel deals platform HolidayPirates Group is moving its global headquarters to Berlin as it continues to embrace a remote working policy. The group made its first steps to implement a remote-first working policy before the pandemic began but the Covid-19 outbreak accelerated the process as it operates across ten international markets and employs people from more than 40 countries. (Travel Weekly)
  • Delta Airlines will impose a $200 monthly fee on employees unvaccinated against Covid-19, the airline announced on 25 August. In a new memo sent to Delta employees, CEO Ed Bastian announced that unvaccinated employees enrolled in Delta’s account-based healthcare plan will be subject to a $200 monthly surcharge starting 1 November. (The Guardian)
  • Virgin Atlantic has recently struck a deal with Peloton to prep for the return of a healthier breed of business traveller. They are installing Peloton bikes across their U.S. lounges, and Delta Air Lines is also tipped to do the same. (Skift)
  • Hull-based Good Travel Management (GTM) has launched a new division to expand into the exhibitions, events and trade missions market. Called GT Events, the new division will build upon the services already provided to corporate clients in this market. (TheBusinessTravel)
  • The number of travel and mobility startups has grown 5% so far in 2021 compared with 2020, according to the Lufthansa Innovation Hub’s Travel and Mobility Tech startup investment report. Key take-aways from the report reveal that investment in travel startups in 2021 is expected to be back to about $44 billion, having experienced a 14% dip in 2020 to $23 billion. (PhocusWire)

Social media:

  • Facebook has published a new Christmas Marketing Guide to help guide strategic planning, and map out a more effective approach based on key shopping behaviours and events. The 18-page guide is geared around what Facebook’s calling its ‘Discovery Commerce System’, a process that utilises Facebook’s ad matching tools to optimise your marketing approach. (Social Media Today)
  • To celebrate its 10-year anniversary, Messenger has announced a handful of new features: poll games, word effects, contact sharing and birthday gifting via Facebook Pay. But beyond the fun features, Facebook has been testing a way to add voice and video calls back into the Facebook app, rather than on Messenger. (TechCrunch)
  • After testing them out over the last few weeks, Instagram is now rolling out its new promoted products option within the Shop tab to all merchants in the app. Brands with product listings in the app will now be able to promote them on the Shop tab, with a ‘Sponsored’ disclaimer marking the paid posts. (Social Media Today)
  • TikTok is expanding its relationship with Shopify to provide more ways for Shopify merchants to promote their products direct to their audience in the app via a shop tab expansion for Shopify merchant profiles, which, as it sounds, will add a new product display showcase to in-app presence. (Social Media Today)

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