Many of us have had to put our plans to buy a home abroad on hold for a few months. But for those of who just want to get there now – or who are buying in Europe and want to beat the Brexit deadline – waiting until next year is just not an option! So what is happening around the world?
From 1 July the planes will start flying to Spain again – but whether that will be from the UK or other countries worst affected by Covid-19 remains to be seen.
Easyjet and Ryanair are ready for a resumption of flights from July but there is as yet no news on whether there will be an “air bridge” between the UK and Spain, or whether British people will need to quarantine on their return. Also check the official British government on traveling to Spain, which you will find at gov.uk.
After a strict lockdown since March, normality is returning as we enter phase two and savour the joys of meeting our friends in cafés, bars and restaurants, going to the beach and enjoying the countryside in this gloriously sunny weather.
Tourism in Portugal officially opens to EU countries from June 6th, with Madeira and Port Santos opening from July 1st. A number of UK airlines are set to be resuming flights in June and July, although there is still some confusion as to how that will happen.
Portugal’s foreign minister said he was hopeful an ‘air bridge’ between the UK and Portugal could be agreed by the end of June.
Masks at the ready! Italy is now in Phase 2 of the Covid-19 pandemic, and has begun reopening. Estate agents are back in business and are predicting a buyer’s market, so don’t miss out! Some of the biggest price cuts are expected to be in the small towns. Property owners that were relying on an income from holiday rentals, are going to see that income decrease considerably this year. Reluctantly, they may need to sell.
Cyprus is set for a busy summer, having seen off the pandemic in spectacularly successful terms. Hotels opened on 1 June, with strict rules on hygiene, masks and social distancing. International travel restarts on Tuesday 9 June from countries with low infection rates.
The British will have to wait a little longer, although it is widely expected that flights will restart in July. Cyprus’s property market ready is ready, with offices and estate agents open and all the legal procedures being conducted in a socially distanced but otherwise normal way.
Greece has beaten the virus successfully, with just 180 people succumbing. On 15 June international flights start to Athens and Thessaloniki and the country officially opens for tourism.
There’s been no news on whether there will officially be an “air bridge” between the UK and Greece, but Greek tourism officials seem keen to welcome the four million British tourists who normally arrive each summer.
America is largely open for business, with all states having eased or eliminated lockdown and social restrictions. In the Midwest and South, cases are largely low, with 50% of confirmed cases being in New York State, Connecticut and New Jersey. Buyer favourite Florida has entered phase 2, allowing full retail reopening.
There are still travel restrictions in place from the UK, but Virgin Atlantic is resuming flights from the end of July, so we could see further easing by then. Real estate agents are still doing viewings and house prices in April still rose 5.4%.
Canada’s provinces and territories all have their individual rules, but all are slowly starting to reopen. There is a huge willingness in the government to continue to attract new Canadian residents, and over 3,000 invitations for the Express Entry system were issued at the end of May.
Travel restrictions are still in place for anyone entering the country, but there is talk of them being lifted by July. The current rules are in place until 21st June.
Australia’s borders remain closed and there is still a travel ban. You’re not able to apply for an ETA (travel pass) online while travel restrictions are in place. Temporary visa holders will generally need a travel exemption if they wish to travel back to Australia.
Despite this, as states and territories lift restrictions new properties are coming onto the market. Many agents are arranging online inspections and virtual tours. Online auctions are also happening.
New Zealand has been widely praised for their fast response to COVID-19. The country is expected to be one of the first in the world to move from COVID-19 Alert Level 2 – ‘Reduce’ to Alert Level 1 – ‘Prepare’. There will still be strict restrictions at the border for an unconfirmed period, however, as the country gets back on its feet.
Unsurprisingly, the New Zealand property market dropped off considerably during the pandemic. Despite this, more activity is anticipated from first time buyers keen to make the most of low interest rates and lower prices, which could drop by as much as 15%.
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