23 Feb 2021
Airlines have reported a rise in bookings following Boris Johnson’s roadmap out of lockdown announcement.
The strategy indicates that overseas holidays may be permitted as early as 17 May.
The UK’s largest holiday operator, TUI, reported a 500% rise in bookings overnight.
The most popular destinations are Greece, Spain and Turkey, BBC reports.
Andrew Flintham, managing director of TUI UK and Ireland stated: "The announcement from the Prime Minister on 22 February was positive and shows that by working with the travel industry on a risk-based framework our customers will have the opportunity to travel abroad this summer.
"We will continue to work closely with the government so people can look forward to a well-deserved break away, after what has been a very difficult year for many."
In addition, Thomas Cook reported a 100% rise in website traffic, with bookings “flooding in” to destinations including Greece, Cyprus, Mexico and the Dominican Republic.
According to Thomas Cook's chief executive Alan French: "The government's announcement today is good news for those of us desperate to get away on holiday.
"While we await more details, it's clear that the government's ambition is to open up international travel in the coming months and hopefully in time for the summer holidays."
easyJet also revealed a 337% surge in flight bookings, and a 630% rise in holiday bookings.
CEO Johan Lundgren said the PM’s announcement had "provided a much-needed boost in confidence" for its UK customers.
"We have consistently seen that there is pent up demand for travel and this surge in bookings shows that this signal from the government that it plans to reopen travel has been what UK consumers have been waiting for," he added.
However, Health Secretary Matt Hancock told Sky News that a review into international travel will be published on 12 April, before holidays could restart.
He said: "That review will be informed by the evidence that we're currently collecting on the impact of the vaccine on these, the so-called South Africa and Brazil new variants.
"If the vaccine works well against them, then we can be much more relaxed about international travel.
"If the vaccine doesn't work against them, then that will be much, much more difficult."
Shares in airlines rose on Tuesday. BA owner, IAG shares increased by 5.9%; TUI rose 6.4%; easyJet by 8.3%; and Ryanair rose by 4.1%.