It’s about that time that families start to flock to the airports for a much needed summer break.
And although holidays are meant to be a time to relax and get rid of all the stresses and worries that flood everyday life, there are a few things you need to know to keep your loved ones safe.
We’ve summarised the important information that you need to know before heading to popular European destinations France, Spain, Greece and Portugal.
Knowing these tips will help your chances of avoiding chaos and make your holiday time a lot less stressful.
Here’s what you need to know.
Temperatures can get really hot in Spain, which is partly why it’s such a popular destination. But when it reaches 40C or more, there’s an increased risk of forest fires you need to be aware of.
If you’re a smoker, make sure cigarettes are properly extinguished and don’t leave empty bottles behind in woodland areas.
For those traveling to Catalonia, there have been gatherings and demonstrations due to the political situation. It’s worth being vigilant in case these escalate.
The Foreign Office also warns about crime, stating: “Be alert to the existence of street crime. Thieves tend to target money and passports so don’t keep them all in one place. Keep a copy of your passport somewhere safe.”
There are regular strikes, sometimes called at short notice that can cause disruption to public transport (including air travel and ports), as well as road networks and borders. The Foreign Office advises you to avoid all demonstrations.
Localised or severe weather extremes, including wildfires, can affect areas of Greece over the extended summer period.
The Foreign Office also states: “Carry a copy of your passport or other photographic ID which confirms British nationality at all times.”
Some protests linked to the yellow vest (gilets jaunes) movement continue across France, generally taking place on Saturdays.
If demonstrations do turn violent, a heavy police presence is to be expected – and the protests may cause travel delays.
It’s worth avoiding the demonstrations wherever possible.
According to the Foreign Office, there is a risk of terrorist attacks in France so it’s important to stay vigilant.
The government website reads: “Terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in France.
“Due to ongoing threats to France by Islamist terrorist groups, and recent French military intervention against Daesh (formerly referred to as ISIL), the French government has warned the public to be especially vigilant and has reinforced its security measures.”
The Foreign Office said the most common problem Brits have in France is pickpocketing – so make sure you keep an eye on your belongings.
During the summer and when the weather is hot and dry, there’s an increased risk of forest fires in Portugal that you’ll need to be aware of.
The Foreign Office also warns about crime in the country: “Beware of street crime. Thieves tend to target money and passports so don’t keep them all in one place.”
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