If you follow the news concerning coronavirus COVID-19, you sense and in fact you know that even if the most strict measures against the spread of the virus will be softened in maybe a maybe a month or six weeks, other measures won’t.
This is a travel blog so news and trends concerning the virus and travelling interests us.
In De Standaard of 30 March prof. dr. Steven Van Gucht, PhD crushed all hopes for a normal Summer. Van Gucht is virologist at Sciensano, the Scientific Institute for Public Health in Belgium.
He just cuts short of confirming big summer festivals will have to be cancelled.
Travelling? Doubtful. You dan’t want to import the virus from tourists coming to Belgium or Belgians returning home, as happened after carnival break (krokusvakantie).
All countries are fighting the virus, Van Gucht says. “One possibility is a compulsory quarantine of two weeks after a trip abroad, as is the case now.”
This effectively makes leisure travel impossible. A few days or weeks ago perception of time is f*cked up), virologist prof. dr. Marc Van Ranst, MD already told us to stay in Belgium this summer.
In De Morgen also on 30 March prof. dr. Erika Vlieghe, MD of the prestigious Institute of Tropical Medicine (ITM) in Antwerp concurs with this train of thoughts. Festivals are out of the question. Individual travel? Maybe. But travel is what got us in this mess.
The current Belgian Minister of the Interior is Pieter De Crem (CD&V). He used to be Minister of Defense and State Secretary of Foreign Trade.
In De Standaard on 28 March, De Crem summarizes it all: “This will have an impact for years to come. There will be stop on the way we happily travelled the wide world. The world was at our feet. That illusion has been shattered.”
We’ve been notified.