FAMILIES have been forced to cancel their UK staycation holidays following the government’s new restrictions on group events.
From Monday, no more than six people can meet up, meaning large holidays between friends and families cannot go ahead.
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This can be six people from six different households, and large families living together or support bubbles are exempt.
As quarantine restrictions are enforced at Brit-favourite destinations including Portugal, Spain and Greece, many have turned to a UK holiday instead this year.
The latest announcement is a blow to both families as well as tour operators who face even more cancellations.
Richard Goodey, who owns York-based Lost Earth Adventures said he was facing a number of people wanting to cancel their holidays, after having the busiest August on record.
He told the Guardian: “I’ve just had an email from a group of 10 who have cancelled because they want to do the activity together but we are not allowed to do that now.”
Centre Parcs also confirmed that they have seen a surge in calls from large group bookings in regard to their holidays.
They explained on social media: “We ask guests to check the latest government guidelines to see if the ‘Rule of 6’ announcement impacts their break. Groups of 6 or less will be unaffected.”
As part of their Book with Confidence scheme, anyone who has a holiday affected by new Covid rules can get a full refund or free move to a different date.
Sykes Cottages and Haven have also advised anyone with bookings of more than six people to contact them.
Best of Suffolk’s head of operations Tim Ripman warns of the 410 properties offered in the East of England, 118 have seven guests or more.
He told the BBC: “It’s going to financially impact us. Our largest properties generate the largest income for us.”
Chair of the Professional Association of Self-Caterers (Pasc) Alistair Handyside warned that approximately 25 per cent of self-catered accommodation in the UK is catered for more than six people and that the resulting booking cancellations will be “carnage”.
He said: “We have worked really hard to make sure we offer a safe environment [for guests] and we’re mystified as to why the new law comes down so heavily on a sector where you can control your environment. So we’re hacked off.
“If we don’t get December with Christmas and New Year, which are peak weeks, we will see carnage, we honestly will.”
Mr Handyside, who owns his own large rental properties, in Decon, said he has refunded all of his guest bookings, while Cotswolds-based Log House Holidays is offering credit notes to use for later bookings, according to the Guardian.
Brits who want to go away ahead. ofthe new rules can book last minute trips this weekend, to make the most. ofthe heatwave.
Starting from £9pp per night, deals include Pontins, Haven as well as cottages and apartments to rent.
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