Holiday warning: What could coronavirus mean for YOUR holiday?

Since it was first discovered in December 2019 in Wuhan, China, coronavirus has spread across the world. More than 2,000 people have died from the virus, and over 80,000 people have been infected.

The majority of cases have been reported in China, specifically in Hubei province.

But cases have been confirmed across the world, with Italy recently declaring the worst coronavirus outbreak in Europe.

In Italy there have been 374 confirmed cases, and 12 people have died, while South Korea has also confirmed more than 1,000 cases of the virus.

The number of coronavirus cases in the UK has recently risen to 13, and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has been issuing regular updates on the current coronavirus travel risk.


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What is the Foreign Office’s advice for travel?

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) is currently advising against all travel to Hubei province in China.

The FCO are also warning against “all but essential” travel to the rest of mainland China.

A number of towns in northern Italy are currently under lockdown after hundreds of people tested positive for coronavirus.

As a result the FCO are advising against “all but essential” travel to 10 towns in the Lombardy region and one town in the Veneto region of Italy.

These towns are: Codogno, Castiglione d’Adda, Casalpusterlengo, Fombio, Maleo, Somaglia, Bertonico, Terranova dei Passerini, Castelgerundo and San Fiorano and Vo’ Euganeo.

The FCO offers the same advice for the cities of Daegu and Cheongdo in South Korea.

The FCO is not advising against travel to any other country at this time, but are regularly updating their website with the latest risk assessments.


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Should I cancel my holiday?

Tour operators are only required to give a refund on holidays if the FCO declares a region a no-go area.

If you have plans to travel to any areas not advised by the Foreign Office, cancelling your holiday may be unavoidable.

Cancellations due to FCO advice may be covered by your travel insurance, and your travel operator may offer a refund in such circumstances.

The FCO currently advise: “If you’re concerned about the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on your existing travel plans, check with your airline, tour operator, cruise line or other transport and accommodation providers as applicable.

“Individual providers may also have their own requirements for customers or passengers to meet.”

For flights still going ahead to regions not under FCO warnings, it is unlikely you will receive a refund if you cancel your holiday.

If you have a holiday booked for the future, keep up to date with the FCO advice on foreign travel.

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