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Thursday 12 March 2020

US ban makes travel even more problematic

US President Donald Trump has announced a 30-day suspension of flights between 26 European countries and the US - but nonsensically the ban does not include flights from the UK or Ireland.

In a bid to combat the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, travellers from countries in the Schengen border-free travel area are now barred from entering the US.

The rules come into force on Friday at midnight and, predictably, do not include American citizens, who will allowed to enter after health checks.

The ban applies to anyone else who has been in the EU's Schengen border-free area in the 14 days before their arrival in the US.

Trump (right) trumpeted that the European Union had "failed to take the same precautions" as the US over the coronavirus crisis by restricting travel from China.

He said he was taking "strong but necessary actions to protect the health and wellbeing of all Americans".

With the UK idiotically exempt, Heathrow Airport could see a spike in traffic as the major gateway between North America and the European continent, even though general travel demand has plummeted.

Meanwhile, insurance giant LV has confirmed it is suspending the sales of travel insurance in light of the coronavirus pandemic.

In a statement on its website it said: “In light of the impact that coronavirus (Covid-19) is having globally, we’ve made the difficult decision to pause the sale of travel insurance to new customers.

“We considered a number of different options, such as excluding cover or significantly increasing prices for new customers. We strongly believe this temporary measure of pausing the sale of new policies and focusing on our existing customers is the right decision.”

Existing LV customers are not affected.

LV said the number of travel policies sold had doubled over the past fortnight,

While Australian travel agents are merrily discounting packages to Bali, a British holidaymaker with coronavirus has died on the holiday island.

The 53-year old was admitted to hospital feeling unwell last week. She is the first person with coronavirus to have died in Indonesia.

Options for travellers are shrinking by the day - but so are prices for anyone willing to take a risk.

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