Once approval is given for Step 2, overnight stays will be permitted outside the home but must be restricted to single households. This will allow families to book self-contained accommodation, such as holiday lets, that does not rely on indoor facilities shared between households.
Outdoor hospitality will also reopen in Step 2, meaning people who choose to go away will be able to take advantage of pub beer gardens and restaurants and cafes that have outside seating. However, accommodation options will remain limited for several more weeks, with hotels and B&Bs not permitted to open until Step 3, from May 17 at the earliest, and it will only be in this stage that indoor hospitality returns.
Overseas holidays will not be allowed before May 17. A review into restarting international travel will conclude by that date, meaning summer holidays abroad could yet take place.
The staycation industry is expected to boom once given the green light to reopen, with the Caravan and Motorhome Club predicting that the easing of restrictions will be like “a cork popping from a bottle”, but the ruling out of Easter breaks is a setback.
Andrew Coney, the general manager of the Hari Belgravia hotel in central London, said in advance of Mr Johnson’s statement: “With so much pent-up demand, the industry felt so hopeful that a spring staycation boom in the UK would be possible and we really banked on being able to open our doors by Easter.
“It’s heartbreaking and, whilst we are trying to remain as positive as possible, the idea that Easter stays might not be on the cards is a huge blow.”