When will flights resume? easyjet, Ryanair and British Airways on when travel to Europe and beyond could begin

With the UK under strict lockdown until at least 7 May, any prospects of travel aren’t on the horizon any time soon
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But as countries around the world start to ease restrictions, including Spain and Italy, many airlines are starting to plan for the eventual lifting of lockdown, giving an indication as to when flight schedules may start again.

 

When will flights resume?

Ryanair wont resume travel if it is forced to keep the middle seat empty (Photo: Shutterstock)Ryanair wont resume travel if it is forced to keep the middle seat empty (Photo: Shutterstock)
Ryanair wont resume travel if it is forced to keep the middle seat empty (Photo: Shutterstock)

 

The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) is currently advising against all but essential international travel indefinitely, which is impacting millions of holiday plans.

 

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While countries will make their own decision regarding domestic travel, EU regulations allowing free movement of people between borders will depend on the growth rate of coronavirus cases around the world.

 

Experts have suggested that travel could be permitted again in the next three months, although it is likely to be limited to breaks in the UK only.

 

A spokesperson for Aito, the Association of Independent Tour Operators, told The Mirror: "If luck is on our side, then three months hence should see things calm down on the virus front.

 

"It’s likely that the first travellers within the UK will venture out again to explore their own country at the traditional start of the summer season."

 

What dates do airlines expect flights to resume?

 

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While flights throughout April and May have been cancelled, with the exception of repatriation flights, some airlines have said they are expecting to resume their flight schedules ahead of the peak July and August season.

 

Here are the dates some of the major airlines expect to start running flights again:

 

Jet2

 

Jet2 said it will not be restarting any flights until 17 June, and this date will be kept under constant review, in line with government guidance.

 

Customers who were due to depart before this date will be contacted by the airline to discuss their options, including rebooking their holiday at a later date.

 

Ryanair

 

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Ryanair has currently suspended around 99 per cent of its flights and it won’t resume travel if it is forced to keep the middle seat empty in compliance with in-flight social distancing rules, its chief executive Michael O’Leary has said.

 

O’Leary said he expects 80 per cent of its flight schedule to resume by September if flights in Europe begin again in early July.

 

However, this will only be the case if it is allowed to use all of the seats on its planes.

 

British Airways

 

The airline is currently running a limited number of flights for essential workers, but has yet to announce a date when it expects its full schedule to be back running.

 

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British Airways said its flight schedules are being constantly monitored and recommends customers check for their latest news on their flight on its website.

 

Virgin Atlantic

 

Virgin Atlantic has been running a limited schedule for essential flights, as it focuses on delivering emergency personal protective equipment to the NHS.

 

Customers are able to amend their booking up until 30 June, suggesting flights are likely to remain on hold until then.

 

Those who have already planned their holiday can rebook free of charge, change their destination or travel date, or hold their ticket up until 31 May 2022.

 

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Any customers who make a booking before 30 June 2020, for travel before 30 December 2020, will be able to move their booking to any date before 31 May 2022 and the date change fee will be waived.

 

Tui

 

Tui holidays are likely to remain on hold until later in the year, with all holidays up to and including 14 May, and all Marella Cruise holidays up to and including 31 May, will not go ahead.

 

EasyJet

 

EasyJet has said that resuming flights will not be considered until after May, and said in a statement: "We are in regular contact with regulators including EASA and the CAA. 

 

“The entire fleet of aircraft is being maintained in order to give us the ability to restart partially at around 14 days notice. 

 

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“It is likely that different countries and destinations will open up with various restrictions and on different timescales."

 

Wizz Air

 

Wizz Air is resuming flights out of Luton Airport on Friday (1 May) to selected airports in Hungary, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Portugal, Spain and Israel.

 

The flights will operate with “enhanced” health and safety measures, with cabin crew required to wear masks and gloves on all flights and sanitising wipes will be distributed to passengers, the airline said in a statement.

 

Social distancing measures will also be introduced during boarding and the aircraft will be disinfected overnight.

 

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The low-cost airline initially plans to operate ten per cent of scheduled flights for passengers who have essential journeys. However, despite the move, the government is still advising against travel abroad.

 

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