EasyJet is to relaunch flights to almost three-quarters of its network by August.
It is selling seats from today on over a million flights from July 1 to October 31, with fares starting at £29.99.
EasyJet said it plans to fly half of its 1,022 routes in July and 75% in August, including flights from all its UK bases to a wide selection of destinations, although it will operate fewer than a third of its normal July to September frequencies.
Destinations will include domestic, beach and city, including Paris, Milan and Rome, the Balearics and Canary Islands, Italy, Croatia, Portugal, Egypt and Morocco.
Some flights will start as early as June 15, although these are mostly within the UK.
Should you book an easyJet flight?
It’s definitely tempting to snap up one of these cheap flights, although most seats are likely to cost a lot more than £29.99, especially as easyJet is only operating about 30% of its usual summer capacity, and as flights fill up, fares will rise.
However, remember that travel restrictions remain in place for many destinations and the UK Foreign Office is advising against all non-essential travel, which means that you’re unlikely to be able to get travel insurance if you take one of these flights, although you will have cover for medical emergencies in the EU with an EHIC card (until the end of 2020) but not repatriation, should you need it.
Don’t forget too that the UK will introduce a mandatory 14-day self-quarantine for anyone returning from holiday from June 8. This is due to remain in place at least until June 29, after which it will be reviewed but with no guarantee it will be lifted.
EasyJet says customers can switch their flights 14 days before departure if travel restrictions remain in place without incurring any change fees, but you’ll will have to pay any difference in fares, which might be much more expensive and you’re unlikely to be offered a refund unless the flight is cancelled, so you might have to stump up more than you’d anticipated to change or risk losing all the money you’ve paid.
Also, it’s not clear if easyJet will allow free changes if overseas travel restrictions are lifted and the UK quarantine remains in place.
Will travel restrictions be lifted before July?
The Foreign Office is coming under a lot of pressure from the travel industry to end the blanket advice against all non-essential travel as more and more countries open their borders. Italy has just announced that it will lift travel restrictions for British holidaymakers from tomorrow. Portugal is reopening its hotels and resorts and has no specific travel restrictions for people arriving from the UK, but Greece and Spain haven’t confirmed when they will remove travel restrictions for British holidaymakers.
If you want to check the travel restrictions for the country you’re planning to visit, check the FCO advice here.
What about the UK quarantine?
The travel industry, including airlines, is also arguing against the 14-day quarantine being introduced by the UK Government on June 8, so even if this goes ahead, it might well be lifted on June 29 after the promised three-week review, but this isn’t guaranteed. While it’s in place, you’ll have to self-isolate for 14 days after returning to the UK or run the risk of a £1000 fine if you don’t.
Is flying safe?
EasyJet, along with other airlines, has introduced new safety measures to try to limit the spread of coronavirus, both at the airport and onboard. You can find out what easyJet is doing here.