Tourists are expected to flock to the South West next week as schools across the country close for half-term.
While residents of Tier 3 (very high alert level) areas are being advised not to travel outside those areas, Devon and Cornwall – which is in the lowest risk alert (Tier 1) - is very much open for business.
However Alison Hernandez, Police and Crime Commissioner for Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, is reminding residents, businesses and visitors to observe the rules that are in place to ensure the region remains a low risk area.
Commissioner Hernandez said: “I’m hoping families do take some down time and unplug from technology during half term as people’s welfare is now paramount.
“Devon and Cornwall are likely to be busy this October half term which is fantastic for our local economy. Tourism is the single biggest economic driver in our region and it’s extremely important that we continue to welcome guests and help support local businesses.
“But it’s even more important that we do this safely so we can protect this vital industry for the future. I would urge everyone in Devon and Cornwall, whether a local or visitor, to stick to the ‘Hands, Face, Space’ rules in order to prevent the spread of Covid in the area.
“Washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, or using hand sanitizer, regularly throughout the day will reduce the risk of catching or passing on the virus. Face coverings reduce the dispersion of these droplets, meaning if you’re carrying the virus you’re less likely to spread it when you exhale.
“Transmission of the virus is most likely to happen within 2 metres, with risk increasing exponentially at shorter distances. While keeping this exact distance isn’t always possible, remaining mindful of surroundings and continuing to make space has a powerful impact when it comes to containing the spread.”
As of tomorrow (October 23) Lancashire, Greater Manchester and local authorities in the Liverpool City region are in the “very high” alert level (Tier 3) of coronavirus restrictions due to high numbers of cases in those areas.
As part of those restrictions, residents are advised not to travel in to or out of the area.
People in High Level Alert areas (Tier 2) are still able to go on holiday outside their areas, but must only do so with people in their household or support bubble.
Wales also has a higher level of alert in place as it enters ‘Firebreak’ restrictions as of 6pm today (October 23). From this time onwards, travelling into, out of or within Wales is an offence without a reasonable excuse.
Businesses can access tourism and events Covid guidance and information at the following useful websites:
- Gov.UK full list of local Covid alert levels: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/full-list-of-local-covid-alert-levels-by-area
- Gov.Wales advice on coronavirus restrictions in Wales: https://gov.wales/coronavirus-regulations-guidance
- Visit Britain Tourism and Events Support: https://www.visitbritain.org/business-advice/support-tourism-and-event-businesses-during-covid-19
- Which? Travel and holiday rules for tier 2 and tier 3 restrictions Q&A: https://www.which.co.uk/news/2020/10/travel-and-holiday-rules-for-tier-2-and-tier-3-restrictions-qa/
Hands, Face, Space advise
Washing your hands
While coronavirus is not likely to survive for long periods of time on outdoor surfaces in sunlight, it can live for more than 24 hours in indoor environments. Washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, or using hand sanitizer, regularly throughout the day will reduce the risk of catching or passing on the virus.
Covering your face
Coronavirus is carried in the air by tiny respiratory droplets that carry the virus. Larger droplets can land on other people or on surfaces they touch while smaller droplets, called aerosols, can stay in the air indoors for at least 5 minutes, and often much longer if there is no ventilation. Face coverings reduce the dispersion of these droplets, meaning if you’re carrying the virus you’re less likely to spread it when you exhale.
Transmission of the virus is most likely to happen within 2 metres, with risk increasing exponentially at shorter distances. While keeping this exact distance isn’t always possible, remaining mindful of surroundings and continuing to make space has a powerful impact when it comes to containing the spread.
Official advise on travel for Very High Alert Level (Tier 3) areas
You may continue to travel to venues or amenities which are open, for work, or to access education, within a very high alert level area, but you should and aim to reduce the number of journeys you make. If you need to travel we encourage you to walk or cycle where possible, or to plan ahead and avoid busy times and routes on public transport. This will allow you to practise social distancing while you travel.
In addition, we are advising people not to travel into or out of an area if it has been categorised as a very high alert level area. This is part of wider measures to help manage the risk of transmission. You can continue to travel into or out of very high alert level areas if you need to for work, education, to access youth services or because of caring responsibilities.
You may also do so where necessary as part of a longer journey – such as when a journey between lower risk areas passes through a very high alert level area, or when going to an airport, port or international rail terminal to travel abroad.
Remember, you must not travel if you are experiencing any coronavirus symptoms, are self-isolating as a result of coronavirus symptoms, are sharing a household or support bubble with somebody with symptoms, or have been told to self-isolate after being contacted by NHS Test and Trace.
If you are travelling, you must only do so with members of your household or support bubble, and should follow the safer travel guidance.
If you are a resident in a very high alert level area, we ask you to avoid staying overnight in another part of the UK, except if you need to for work, education or caring responsibilities. This means we are asking you not to leave the very high alert level area to stay in a second home, if you own one. You must not stay with anyone you do not live with elsewhere in the UK or visit their home.
We are asking everyone who lives elsewhere to avoid staying overnight in a very high alert level area where possible, except for those who need to for work, education or caring responsibilities. You must not stay with anyone you do not live with from a very high alert level area or visit their home.
If you are resident in a very high alert level area, you may travel to hotels and other guest accommodation within that area but you should only do this with people in your household or support bubble.
When considering travelling internationally, you should look at the rules in place at your destination, the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) travel advice and the current travel corridor list.