The surprise reintroduction of quarantine requirements for travellers arriving in the UK from Spain is taking a toll on consumer confidence new research has found.
The move, couple to a decision from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office to extend its advice against all but essential travel to the whole of Spain, has made travellers wary of booking a trip.
Ben Cordwell, tourism analyst at GlobalData, said: “The government’s sudden announcement will make British holidaymakers nervous about traveling to any country in case there is a sudden rise in Covid-19 infections, and a subsequent sudden change in rules.
“Our recovery consumer survey results state that 82 per cent of Brits are still extremely or quite concerned about the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, meaning residents will take government advice seriously.
“According to GlobalData, the UK made up nearly a quarter of all international arrivals to Spain in 2019, highlighting the significant impact that the Foreign Office’s advice will have on the country’s tourism recovery.”
Cordwell added: “However, the advice is not only a cause for concern for Spain.
“The timing of the Foreign Office announcement could not be worse for tourism companies.
“July and August are by far the most popular months of travel for British tourists as it is the peak of summer and falls within the school summer holidays.
“For Spain, and possibly more European markets to miss out on this vital period will be devastating for companies.
“A summer without British tourists could make it extremely difficult for many companies to survive the quiet winter months.”
At the same time, the latest tracking data from Cirium highlights the fragile recovery in scheduled passenger jet flights between the UK and Spain.
More than 220 scheduled passenger jet flights operated between the UK and Spain on Saturday July 25th, but following the quarantine announcement that evening, just over 180 flights operated on July 26th.
Tell further to fewer than 160 on July 27th.
On a seven-day rolling average basis, flights tracked between the UK and Spain were up 17 per cent as of 27th July, compared with a week earlier.
However, this metric has shown a clear downward trend for the past seven days.
Ryanair was the leading operator between the two countries on July 27th with approximately 50 flights, followed by Jet2 and easyJet with nearly 40 flights each.
British Airways flew fewer than 20 services while fellow IAG Group carrier Vueling completed a handful of services.
Cirium has also classified an additional 116 passenger jets as ‘in service’ globally in the last 24 hours, taking the number of in-storage passenger aircraft down to 35 per cent of the global passenger fleet, with 65 per cent now in service.