Summer get-away set for re-boot thanks to lifting of quarantine restrictions
East Midlands Airport (EMA) is expecting a surge of passengers from the 10 July, the date from which UK nationals can take holidays to some countries without facing a 14-day quarantine on return.
Last week, the Government announced ‘travel corridors’ with a number of countries in Europe and further afield, some of which include the most popular destinations served by passenger airlines from EMA. Furthermore, Foreign Office advice against non-essential travel will also be relaxed from 10 July.
Confidence is already building since the announcement and, in the last week alone, the airport has seen a 16% increase in the number of passengers turning up for flights and, in a further sign of demand for summer sun, a 25% increase in car park bookings during the last week. On 7 July, 152 people boarded a flight to Alicante, the most passengers to board a single plane since passenger flights resumed on 21 June.
While Ryanair has already started operations, they will increase frequency of flights from 15 July while JET2.com have announced they will begin flying from 15 July and TUI on 1 August.
Of the 55 destinations that will be served by flights from EMA this summer, the most popular will include:
- Palma de Mallorca (18 weekly flights)
- Alicante (17 weekly flights)
- Faro (16 weekly flights)
- Malaga (14 weekly flights)
- Tenerife (13 weekly flights).
Throughout the summer EMA’s retail and food and drink provision in the airport terminal will gradually re-open. Already the likes of EMA’s very own Proof 65, as well as Pork and Pickle and Greggs are serving take-away food and drink, while WHSmith is also open. World Duty Free and the Castle Rock pub are likely to re-open mid-July and many of the other retailers will follow soon.
The airport has put in place many new measures to help keep passengers and its staff safe. Changes include the need to wear face coverings when in the terminal, the installation of hand sanitisers, new screens at check-in desks and in security, a temperature check trial as soon as passengers enter the terminal, and one way systems to help maintain social distancing.
Karen Smart, East Midlands Airport’s Manging Director, says: “The introduction of travel corridors between the UK and some of the more popular holiday destinations that can be easily reached by plane from this airport, makes an overseas holiday far more appealing. We’re confident that people will want to enjoy a well-earned break abroad this summer. It’s also good news for the thousands of people employed across this site whose jobs depend on air travel for their livelihoods - whether they’re directly employed by the airport or work for businesses that support the aviation sector.
“We have worked hard to make our airport safe for our passengers and staff, and, having had a limited schedule of flights during the last couple of weeks, we have been able to make tweaks where necessary ready for a larger volume of passengers. With the 14-day quarantine requirement now removed when returning from many key holiday destinations, coupled with a relaxation of the Foreign Office advice against non-essential travel, we look forward to safely welcoming back more passengers in the coming weeks.”