Gov to allow foreign holidays from July 19, predicts Ryanair boss

BRITS will be flying out on their foreign holidays by July 19, the boss of Ryanair has predicted. 

Michael O’Leary believes the government will ease restrictions on travel to popular European holiday destinations in time for the school holidays. 

He told The Sun: “We think they won’t be able to extend [the restrictions] beyond the 19th or the 21st July, for two reasons. 

“First, the school holidays will have started and I think people are just going to travel to Portugal and Spain at that point in time and ignore the restrictions. 

“Second, we believe that they’ll just say fine, we can’t control it any longer, we’ve extended it for as long as we said – at that point they will release the restrictions, at least on short haul travel for vaccinated passengers.

“Because the difficulty for a populist government like Boris Johnson’s is that if you delay it longer than the third week of July, you are going to interfere with a lot of people’s holidays. And he doesn’t like upsetting people.” 

Mr O’Leary was talking today as part of a call on the government by Ryanair to allow UK travellers with both Covid jabs to be able to travel to Europe.

He said: "UK citizens, almost 80 per cent of whom will be vaccinated by the end of June, continue to face Covid restrictions on travel to and from the European Union, despite the fact that the majority of the European Union citizens will also be vaccinated by the end of June.

“Why can’t vaccinated people travel at least between the UK and Europe – no one will answer the question. 

“In Europe there are very low Covid case rates, very high vaccination rates… there is almost no risk of catching or transmitting Covid and yet the government is saying ‘one more month’.” 

He also slammed the green list as being "non-existent" following the removal of Portugal earlier this month.

He said: “We have no faith in the traffic light system, because if you really had one, Malta would be green. 

“They are massively more vaccinated than the UK and Covid cases are non-existent but Malta can’t get on the green list. 

“Portugal, which was on the green list for a three-week period, had no increase in case rates and yet for some unexplained reason, they were taken off the green list. 

“Cyprus have almost zero Covid cases and are almost as vaccinated as the UK and they can’t get on the green list. So we’re not waiting for places to get on the green list.”

The airline is now launching a legal case with a number of other partners including Manchester Airport, to try to force the government to make their methods for adding countries to the green list more transparent. 

He added: “If we get to 80 per cent of vaccinations are people then going to be allowed to travel? What’s the transparent number? 

“Because right now, the government just keeps shoving the ball another three or four weeks down the road.” 

Holidays abroad may not return before August, travel experts have warned, with both Spain and Turkey tourist officials told not to expect the return of Brits before the end of summer.

Only Gibraltar, Iceland and Israel are open to Brits with few restrictions, with some flight and holiday bookings soaring.

TUI has cancelled trips to Spain, Greece, Cyprus and Italy until at least July 11 due to travel uncertainty while Jet2 has cancelled all holidays until July.

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