New travel corridors announced in biggest shape up to travel industry since the start of the pandemic. Despite the awful news from India yesterday and the increase in infections in a number of countries, there has at least been some good news. As expected the world has started to announce a limited number of travel corridors.
Singapore and Hong Kong to start travel corridor
Travel corridor, or travel bubble? Whatever you want to call it, Singapore and Hong Kong have announced one that will start within 2 weeks. This essentially means that from May 25th people will be able to travel between the two countries without the need to quarantine for 14 days.
And this is not even the first travel corridor announced with New Zealand and Australia having resumed flights without quarantine requirements between the two countries last week. Although with the amount of integration they already have, it was certainly less newsworthy than the news about Hong Kong and Singapore.
It should be noted that these flights are only avaiable for those that have been vaccinated and that tests on either side are still required. This is a cautious initial start, but a start none the less.
Will US/EU travel corridors be a reality this summer?
A travel corridor between Europe and US is what is hoped for on both sides of the Atlantic, and is certainly EU policy. Sadly much of the EU has faced severe delays in vaccinating its citizens, meaning the plan might be hopeful at best. It could though mean the potential for Americans who been vaccinated to visit the EU, even if it is not reciprocated.
Travel between the UK and the USA is much more likely though with both countries vaccinating at unparalleled pace, perhaps with the exception of Israel.
Travel corridors between China and other countries
Despite China initially saying they would only accept those treated with Chinese made vaccines, the situation quickly and very expectedly changed.
You can read our take on things here.
Right from the outset one of the first travel corridor discussions was between the US and China. Many might speak of the impending Cold War 2.0, but the reality is that these two nations trade extensively with each other, and with most Americans being vaccinated, and the low rate of infection in China, this corridor will likely be one of the first major ones.
Are travel corridors the way forward?
Are travel corridors the way forward? Quite simply, yes they very much are. Whilst the New Zealand – Australia and Singapore – Hong Kong ones have made the news, the UK and its “traffic light system”, works in much the same way.
To read about the traffic light system click here.
This has been something we ourselves have been predicting pretty much since the start of everything. Essentially our travel options for 2021 will most likely centre around you first getting vaccinated and secondly which other rich countries have also been vaccinated. Sadly travel to devoting countries, or those severely affected by the pandemic will not change any time soon.
To read our guide to which countries are open to travel click here.
Will the travel corridors be extended?
That is the plan, although of course no one knows how things will exactly play out. Theoretically at least when a county’s infection rates drop to a low enough level then other countries will consider opening corridors with them. As these corridors grow, so do travel opportunities.
This is though all reliant on the corridors working, vaccinations continuing to take pace, and no new strains that screw up the whole thing. Chances are though you will have an opportunity to travel in 2021, although to a limited list of countries. And then hopefully 2022 is the year that things get back to some form of normality.