As coronavirus cases surge, summer holidays may be in doubt
New European travel advice for the Netherlands may be disappointing because of the sudden rise in coronavirus cases, and this could mean Dutch holidaymakers having to quarantine abroad, health minister Hugo de Jonge has warned.
The European centre for infectious diseases ECDC bases its assessment on the number of positive cases in each EU state over the past 14 days and adjusts its colour coded warning system every Thursday.
While this Thursday’s assessment is likely to be okay, future ones are set to be problematic because of the surge in positive cases. In total, the number of positive tests are up six fold on a week ago, hitting 3,688 on Wednesday morning.
Travel companies say if the Netherlands is revised to a red zone, it will be disastrous for the industry.
‘In extreme cases, holidaymakers will have to quarantine for two weeks,’ ANVR director Frank Oostdam told Radio 1 news. ‘Most Dutch people go on holiday for two or three weeks, so that is out of the question. Then you can forget about your vacation.’
‘It is as if Hugo de Jonge thinks clubs and cafe terraces are more important than going on holiday and travelling freely,’ he said.
De Jonge has also asked the government’s Outbreak Management Team for its recommendations to deal with the increase, which set in once most restrictions were lifted on June 26.
But according to some reports, he is not keen on bringing back some of the restrictive measures which have been dropped.
The cabinet is expected to discuss the OMT’s position at Friday’s cabinet meeting, which is the last before the summer recess.
MPs have also warned that without concrete action, many summer holiday plans could be in doubt if extra restrictions are imposed on people from the Netherlands.
Some 20% of new cases have been traced back to cafes, bars and clubs and there are several large clusters relating to newly-reopened night life.
Some club owners have already said they will close their doors voluntarily, because they don’t want to take the risk of helping to spread infections, broadcaster NOS reported.
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