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Travelling this summer? Laura Hamilton's handy guide to all the European destinations you can visit

A Place In The Sun star Laura Hamilton's got the lowdown

Laura Hamilton

What makes so many of us happy is the ability to travel freely and go on holiday. With the Foreign and Commonwealth Office still currently advising British Nationals against all but essential international travel, the question we are all asking is - when can we go abroad again?

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Over the last few months so many of us have had our holidays cancelled while others don't know whether we will be able to go on the holidays we have booked in for a few months' time… And, what about those who own a holiday home abroad? When will one be able to use those again? 

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Property guru Laura Hamilton shares expert advice on when we can travel again

The truth is, you might actually be able to travel to your holiday home right now, depending on where it is of course and providing you can get there.  What you do however have to ask yourself is, is the travel to your holiday home essential?  Only you can answer that. 

The UK opened up its borders on 8 June and the two-week quarantine that is expected on arrival and currently in place is due to be reviewed on 29 June, with much speculation (and hope) that this will be eased.  As is the restriction of non-essential travel, which the government are advising is under constant review.

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A lot of countries have now opened up their borders to Britain and several airlines have various routes on sale.  In my opinion, one of the best ways of finding out what is available is by looking on Sky Scanner.  If you can drive to your holiday home then this is an option that should be explored.  It is possible to book a ferry from various UK ports, or take the Shuttle from the UK to France, and on arrival you can drive to your final destination.

However, you still have to ask yourself is it "essential travel" and are you happy putting yourself and others at any potential risk?  What are the quarantine expectations at your destination? And, are you happy to self-quarantine in the UK for 14 days on your return? So, in a nutshell, travel to your holiday home abroad might not be as straightforward as it usually is, but it still might be possible to get there if you really need to AND, dependent on what happens over the next few weeks, things might change significantly.

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Laura has compiled a handy guide to the current restrictions across Europe

I've put together a little country guide of the current restrictions in place at various destinations across Europe for anyone who is considering booking a holiday.  Please be mindful that guidelines are changing on a daily basis and the. Best website to source up to date information from is https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.

BULGARIA, BELGIUM & CROATIA 

All currently open to the UK with no quarantine restrictions on arrival

CYPRUS

Expected to open up the UK early July

FRANCE

Open to the UK but with a two-week quarantine required on arrival

GREECE

Open to the UK with no quarantine on arrival.  You will be tested at the airport when you land and if your results are clear you will be permitted to continue with your onward journey.

ITALY

Open to the UK and you aren't required to quarantine on arrival unless you have been to any countries outside of the UK, EU or are citizens of Morocco or Andorra. 

MALTA

Opens up from 1 July but not to UK which is no surprise given it was one of the first countries to lockdown on 10 March.

HOLLAND

Open to the UK but British residents are required to self-isolate for 14 days on arrival. 

SPAIN

It was announced on 21 June that Spain had opened its borders to the UK.  Better still, there is no need to quarantine for two weeks on arrival.  This will be music to the ears of the 600,000 who own holidays homes there. 

PORTUGAL

The borders are open to the UK and no quarantine is required on arrival.

TURKEY

Open for business to the UK but expect to go through health checks when reaching your destination.

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Many of us have been left wondering - when can we use our holiday homes again?

I truly believe things do need to start get moving and I am as hopeful as many of us are, it won't be long before we are able to travel freely again. When more flight routes open up, lots of people are anticipating that airports, airlines and hotels will be busy. 

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Perhaps we need to consider our travel plans more carefully. Read the small print of your travel insurance carefully and think about 'Responsible Tourism'; try to avoid the crowds, look at booking private villas or perhaps consider visiting escapism resorts further afield.  In the meantime, and for the next few weeks at least, let's make the most of the blue skies and sunshine the UK is experiencing.  Keep smiling and stay positive, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. 

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