When will international flights open from the UK?

An airplane just after take off
Countries across Europe are announcing plans to ease border restrictions (Credits: Getty Images)

For the past few months, the coronavirus pandemic has put a halt on travel around the world.

But now we are slowly starting to see things change.

Countries across Europe are announcing plans to ease lockdown measures and border restrictions, to prepare for the return of both domestic and international tourists.

However, while it seems promising for Europe, the UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) still has an order in place for people to avoid all non-essential travel.

So when can we expect international travel to pick up again in the UK?

When will international flights open from the UK?

While there’s no definite date on when international flights will resume from the UK, many airlines have hinted when they plan to be up and running again.

Gerneric Aircraft in flight
Airlines have revealed rough timetables for flights (Credits: Getty Images)

EasyJet is hoping to restart flights in June and Jet2 from 17 June.

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Ryanair has also revealed plans to operate 1,000 flights a day by July – returning to two-fifths of its normal flight schedule. 

Similarly, British Airways has said it hopes to resume 50 per cent of its services by July.

Likewise, Virgin Atlantic has released plans to resume flights in the second half of 2020 – along with a flight programme for summer 2021 with 24 destinations.

However, it’s worth pointing out that none of these changes will occur unless the two-week quarantine requirement for arriving passengers is lifted and FCO advice is changed.

Chairman of the TRIP Group (Travel Risk incident Prevention) and travel risk expert Lloyd Figgins tells Metro.co.uk: ‘Flights will not resume until the government advice against all but essential travel has changed.

‘Even then, there will likely be restrictions on the volume of people allowed to travel.’

Lloyd adds: ‘All flights will be reliant on the destination country being willing to accept visitors from the UK.’

When are other countries opening their borders?

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis has said he hopes to open his country for the summer season, starting 1 July.

He told CNN: ‘Best-case scenario is Greece is open for business 1 July, and we’re working towards that.

‘But, of course, this involves airlines, because most people fly into Greece, and very strict, but also enforceable protocols.’

Similarly, the president of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades has announced plans to partially open to tourists from July.

The Canary Islands tourism minister also said that the islands are aiming to reopen to domestic visitors by 1 August, with this extending to international visitors by October.

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It also seems Iceland may be one of the first countries to open borders, as Prime Minister Katrin Jakobsdottir announced that the country will reopen to international visitors by 15 June.

MORE: Travellers on nature reserve can’t be evicted because of coronavirus guidelines

MORE: Can you go for a drive in lockdown – and how far can you travel?

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