Grant Shapps drops advice urging people not to book summer holidays but warns of ‘risks’

Grant Shapps has dropped his advice urging people not to book summer holidays abroad, as the government outlined plans to partially re-open the industry.

The transport secretary’s remarks came as ministers gave the green light for holidays abroad as early as 17 May, but made clear they will not officially confirm the date or the locations on the new “green list” for another two-three weeks.

In recent months, Mr Shapps has warned individuals against booking overseas holidays, saying just last month it was too early to make plans and said there were still “lots of questions” around how safe travel will be in June.

But pressed on Sky News whether people should now be booking overseas holidays, the cabinet minister replied: “I’m not saying people that they shouldn’t book summer holidays now — it’s the first time I’ve been able to say that for many months.

“But I think everybody doing it understands there are risks with coronavirus and of course actually I think people would want to be clear about which countries are going to be in the different traffic system then.

“People will predominantly of course be looking to book in a green country. There’s only two or three weeks to wait before we publish that list itself, but yes, tentative progress, for the first time people can start to think about visiting loved ones abroad, or perhaps summer holiday. But we’re doing it very, very cautiously because we don’t want to see any return of coronavirus in this country.”

Amid concerns over the cost of a holiday, the cabinet minister added: “Costs are definitely a concern — it’s one of the factors this year. We have to accept we’re still going through a global pandemic.”

More Stories
Northern Ireland unrest: Fears as hijacked cars set on fire in Newtownabbey after rioting