EasyJet moves planes out of UK to Germany as travel demand rebounds across Europe

Jun 16, 2021

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Amid ongoing travel restrictions, EasyJet is partially abandoning its plans for a summer of transporting holiday-starved Brits to Spain.

The low-cost carrier has said that it’s relocating some of its aircraft from the U.K. to Germany and around Europe to accommodate for stronger demand across the continent.

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EasyJet has said that it’s moving several planes that were set to operate flights from the U.K. to Palma de Mallorca (PMI) to Germany to operate from Berlin (BER) to the same destination.

Related: EasyJet to launch 2 domestic routes to Cornwall this summer

The airline said in a statement that it’s added a further 150,000 seats to its intra-European network to meet demand during this summer period.

“We are seeing European governments progressively opening up using frameworks in place which enable travel and much of it is restriction-free,” an EasyJet spokesperson said in a statement. “This relaxation and removal of restrictions has sparked a positive booking momentum across Europe with the majority of our bookings showing a strong swing towards Europe — when in normal times it would be a 50-50 split with the U.K.”

The move comes as Europe continues to move forward with reopening its borders to non-essential leisure travel. The U.K., meanwhile, continues to prohibit leisure travel from bouncing back.

On 8 June, the U.K. moved Portugal from its highly desired green list, which requires no quarantine on arrival in the U.K., to the amber list. Amber arrivals are required to quarantine for 10 days in a location of their choosing, while also having to pre-book and take two tests whilst in quarantine — one on day two and one on day eight.

Related: What kind of COVID-19 test do I need to travel and how much does it cost?

Currently, there are only 11 countries and territories on the green list — and many of them aren’t viable holiday destinations. In fact, there are only two that don’t require Brits to quarantine on either end of their trip.

Germany is among the countries that are allowing its citizens to travel around the continent — largely without restrictions.

Lufthansa, for example, is capitalising on that demand. Last week, the national carrier of Germany announced that it’ll fly its high-capacity Boeing 747s and Airbus A350s from Germany to Spanish holiday hotspots in order to accommodate the demand.

The U.K. government is set to review its green list next week — potentially on 24 June. It’s unclear if the government will add any new destinations to the green list, but if the last round of changes is any indication, we shouldn’t expect to see big movement.

EasyJet CEO Johan Lundgren has been especially critical of the U.K. government’s traffic light system. Lundgren has said that expensive COVID-19 testing — even for those who are fully vaccinated — will price many families out of taking a European holiday. In addition, he’s said that not knowing if the green list will change and at what point is hurting consumer confidence in booking a holiday abroad.

Featured photo by Hannibal Hanschke/Getty Images.

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