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Across the UK lockdown rules have begun to be enforced in varying levels. In parts of Northern England, households are being banned from seeing one another, in Wales, some restrictions on travel have been imposed, and in parts of Scotland, residents are only allowed to go as far as five miles from home.
However, regardless of where in the UK you reside, one rule is in place for all.
That is the “rule of six”, meaning you cannot gather in groups of more than six people.
For those in local lockdown areas, this also means only gathering with your immediate household.
The rule has serves a new blow to holidaymakers who were looking forward to an Autumn break – particularly those heading away in groups of more than ten, or those impacted by social restrictions.
In turn, it has also begun to impact holiday accommodation providers who are seeing an influx of cancellations and a sudden downturn in bookings.
One such provider is Scotts Castle Holidays, a luxury provider which allows large groups to rent out glamorous holiday homes – including historic castles.
According to the accommodation specialist, the rule of six has meant they are taking a huge hit.
Mat Filewood, a spokesperson from Scotts Castle Holidays, revealed that the provider is now slashing prices by as much as 40 percent on some of these opulent stays in a bid to encourage families to enjoy a Government allowed stay.
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“Scotts Castle Holidays specialises in renting large holiday homes in Scotland that sleep ten or more people, so the new regulations have been devastating,” he said.
“Although we expect smaller self-catering holiday homes to do really well as more people to choose to stay in Scotland for their next holiday, the ‘rule of six’ limits the number of guests staying in any one household to a maximum of six adults and, crucially for our portfolio, those guests can only come from one household.
“Our clientele is, for the most part, multi-generational families and friends coming together for a special occasion.
“As a result, our holiday bookings have taken a hit and we’ve had many cancellations since the rule was announced.”
However, for those looking to travel in a small group, or with their immediate household, there could be a cheap deal in-store.
Matt added: “We’ve had no choice but to massively discount some of our key properties to try to generate some bookings over the coming months.
“This has created the rare opportunity to stay in some of Scotland’s grandest homes for up to 40 percent off the normal rate, so holidaymakers can now stay somewhere really special at more affordable prices than usual for their Scottish staycation.”
Despite the reinstatement of draconian measures, the Government is still giving UK holidays the green-light, so long as they are in accordance with the “rules”.
According to the Gov.uk website, holidaymakers looking to enjoy a staycation in a “lockdown” area should only socialise indoors with members of their own household or support bubble.
“If you live inside an area with local restrictions, you can go on holiday outside that area but you should only socialise indoors with members of your own household or support bubble,” states the advice.
“You can only stay in a private home – which includes self-catered accommodation such as holiday cottages, apartments or boats – with members of your own household or support bubble,” the Government continues.
“You can stay in a hotel or similar accommodation (for example, a hostel or bed and breakfast) with another household, but should avoid sharing rooms with people you do not live with or otherwise socialising indoors, for example in each other’s rooms, in reception areas, or in restaurants and bars.
“We advise against sharing a caravan with another household. You should not share private vehicles to travel to your holiday destination.”
Holidaymakers from none lockdown areas can also enter into areas with local restrictions, such as the Lake District where only two households may meet, so long as they follow the measures in place in that area.
“You can travel into an area with local restrictions on holiday. Whilst inside the area, you should follow the guidance set out above – in particular, you must not stay in a private home there – which includes self-catered accommodation such as holiday cottages, apartments or boats – with people you do not normally live with,” adds the Government advice.
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