News Flights and travel rules during lockdown

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Flights and travel rules during lockdown

England has begun a second national lockdown, putting a stop to travel plans both domestic and international, while the other UK nations are subject to varying travel restrictions. We’ve done our best to provide clarity on what these latest restrictions mean, along with guidance on when it may be possible to travel again.

Will there be lockdown flight cancellations?

Several airlines have announced lockdown flight cancellations, which may well affect other UK nations, as well as England. Meanwhile, others are offering refunds or waiving fees for changing flights between now and 2 December. Here’s a rundown of what some of the major airlines in the UK are doing.

British Airways

British Airways hadn’t announced any specific lockdown flight cancellations at the time of writing. But its travel information page, updated on 4 November, says that the airline is experiencing high call volumes, and that customers should only call if their flight is due to leave in the next 72 hours. If your flight is cancelled, BA will get in touch – but you can also change your booking online or get a voucher for a later date.

easyJet

easyJet will be cancelling many of its flights scheduled between 8 November to 2 December – and keeping only a core timetable of flights to certain destinations. The airline will be getting in touch with customers affected by lockdown flight cancellations. Travellers will be given a choice of changing flights, receiving credit or getting a refund.

Jet2

Jet2 announced on Twitter that it will be cancelling all flights from England to the Canary Islands between 5 November and 2 December – with flights expected to resume from 3 December. The airline is also cancelling all flights from England to Greece and Cyprus. Flights to Greece will resume on 30 March 2021, and flights to Cyprus will resume on 13 February 2021. Any customers affected by lockdown flight cancellations will automatically receive a full refund, with no need to get in touch with the airline.

Ryanair

At the time of writing, Ryanair hasn’t announced any lockdown flight cancellations. The airline also says it won’t be offering refunds on flights that go ahead during lockdown. But it says it will offer customers the chance to change their flight booking to a later date without paying a fee until 21 March 2021.

TUI

TUI has cancelled all flights departing from England and Wales between Thursday 5 November and Tuesday 2 December. The airline will be contacting affected customers to offer them a choice between switching to a different flight, receiving a credit note, or obtaining a full cash refund.

Virgin Atlantic

Virgin Atlantic hadn’t announced any lockdown flight cancellations at the time of writing. But, the airline has said it will get in touch with any affected customers to discuss options, and it has waived fees for changing flights until 31 August 2021. If your flight is cancelled, you will automatically receive credit that can be used until 31 December 2022.

Wizz Air

Wizz Air hasn’t detailed any specific lockdown flight cancellations. But if a flight is cancelled, it will offer customers the option to rebook, receive credit or apply for a full refund.

For more information on changing flight bookings and on what to do if your flight is cancelled, head to our Coronavirus Travel Advice page.

What are the new lockdown rules?

The UK government has announced a national lockdown in England from Thursday 5 November to Wednesday 2 December. The full list of new lockdown rules can be found on the UK goverment website, but below are a few key points:

  • People should stay at home as much as possible. You should only meet people from other households if they are part of their support bubble or childcare bubble.
  • Non-essential shops, entertainment venues and leisure and sports facilities are to close.
  • Cafes, bars and restaurants will be shut, except where they can provide takeaway options.
  • Accommodation such as hotels, guest houses and campsites will close, unless they are providing essential services such as housing homeless people.
  • People living in England should not travel overseas or within the UK, unless it is essential for work or education.
  • Overnight stays and holidays are not permitted, except in specific circumstances.

Can I still travel to Wales?

English residents are not permitted to cross the border into Wales, except under special circumstances. The Welsh ‘firebreak’ lockdown is due to end on 9 November – but even after this date, English residents will not be able to cross into Wales, and Welsh residents will not be allowed to enter England. Further details on the Welsh lockdown can be found on the government website.

Can I travel to Scotland?

The Scottish government advises against any unnecessary travel between Scotland and England. First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said: “We are asking people not to travel to or from England at all, except for essential purposes.”

Can I still book a hotel in England?

All accommodation will be closed for the duration of the second lockdown, including hotels, hostels, guest houses and campsites. No overnight stays or holidays in England are permitted between 5 November and 2 December.

Where can I travel abroad right now?

Foreign travel is not permitted for the duration of the lockdown, unless it is essential for work or education.

FAQs

Will there be lockdown flight cancellations?

Yes, several airlines have implemented lockdown flight cancellations, while others are offering the ability to change bookings free of charge.

What are the new lockdown rules?

Residents in England should stay home wherever possible and avoid contact with people from other households. Non-essential shops, accommodation, sports and leisure facilities and entertainment venues will close, and non-essential travel is not permitted.

Can I still travel to Wales?

No, the England-Wales border is closed except for essential purposes.

Can I travel to Scotland?

No, people should avoid travelling to or from Scotland, except under special circumstances.

Can I still book a hotel in England?

All hotels and other accommodation will close for the duration of the second lockdown. However, bookings can be made for after 2 December.

Where can I travel abroad right now?

Foreign travel is not allowed during the national lockdown, except for essential work or education purposes.

Want to read more?

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This page was last updated on 6 November 2020. To our knowledge, the information on this page was correct at the time of publication. However, given the nature of the COVID-19 crisis, information will vary by location and change at short notice and over time. We will do our best to keep this page up-to-date, however this cannot be guaranteed.

This page has been created for general guidance only and has not been designed for you or any specific circumstances relevant to you. It is highly recommended that you check your government’s latest travel advice before travelling or making any decisions to travel.