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If you've ever taken a philosophy or ethics class, you're probably familiar with the trolley problem — a thought experiment that reveals that moral psychology and decision-making isn't always black-and-white. In a
The aftermath of Madeleine McCann's disappearance coincided with the beginning of my career as a newspaper travel editor. I can still remember the indrawn breath whenever we discussed the possibility of publishing a piece on Portugal –anywhere in Portugal, not just the unhappy slice that contained Praia da Luz. But the story felt just as important to me personally. My first son was born less than a year before Madeleine – he turns 18 next week. I remember furious debate among my friends – most of whom had children of a similar age. Would we have left our five-year-olds alone in a room to go out to dinner, in what clearly seemed a secure, safe resort village, as the McCanns had? Would we ever do so now that we had witnessed their shattered lives played out in such awful detail in the press? Imagine being asked the question by a reporter if such a tragedy happened to you: Didn't you learn from what happened to Maddie? Package holidays were under the spotlight, of course. We’d all been on them, all embraced the sense of warm security that they engendered, all let our children snooze through the afternoon sun in the family room while we lounged by the pool, checking on them occasionally. Holidays were carefree, happy things, a chance for families to relish time together. Now, it seemed, a stranger had broken into this idyll, and trampled on all our holiday dreams. This wasn’t really about package holidays, of course. It was about families dealing with their worst nightmare in a foreign environment. It was impossible then, as it is now, to fully imagine the horror of what the McCanns have been put through, but the truth is family holidays abroad changed after the events of May 3, 2007. Because it wasn't just the dreadful abduction, it was the bewilderment in the parents’ eyes as the world watched them being forced to navigate not just their own personal tragedy but also an alien justice system. Perhaps we already knew how dreadful it felt to lose sight of a child, just for a few minutes, in a crowded local supermarket, when all the usual signposts of normality, of home, of security, were close by. How much, much worse it would be to experience a parent’s worst nightmare in a country where you might not know the language, wouldn't know the bureaucracy, the protocol, the right numbers to call. All you’d have was a suitcase full of all the things you'd thought you’d need for a child to be happy for a week in the sun: T-shirts, a sunhat, a ball for the beach. The story ran for such a long time, and every now and again a fresh peak of trauma would emerge for the family, with new Portuguese words for us all to learn as the parents were given arguido (suspect) status, and trails that led to dead ends, all played out under the burning white sunshine of the Algarve. The worst sort of advert for a destination famed for family-friendly package holidays. I quickly learnt that supposedly inspirational travel stories in my section about a destination that might also be on the front page of the paper the very same day were never going to be appropriate. As is the way with the world of travel – or was the way before the all-consuming coronavirus pandemic hit – we shifted our focus, moved on to other countries, the dreadful thrum of the missing girl being played out elsewhere. But as a parent, it suddenly wasn’t just the cuts and scrapes of a family adventure I would have in mind on a holiday, it was no longer simply a case of inflating my children’s armbands and applying sunscreen. We all gathered our children that little bit closer; and became a little less carefree as a result.
Greece has clarified that Britons can avoid quarantine if travelling from airports not included on a high risk list, but options are limited British holidaymakers’ hopes of a quarantine-free trip to Greece are looking somewhat gloomy, despite the country confirming that Britons could visit from mid-June. The Greek government confirmed on Monday that Britons would be able to travel to Greece from June 15 and would face more or less strict screening measures depending on which airport they flew from. Those travelling from airports on the EASA list would all be tested and face seven days of quarantine if they test negative or 14 days if they test positive. Tourists coming from airports not on the list would only be subject to random testing. “There are already UK airports from which, after June 15, visitors may come to Greece without going through quarantine,” tourism minister Harry Theoharis told the Telegraph. These airports include Southend, Edinburgh and Bristol, yet there are no direct flights between these 'safe' UK airports and Greece between June 15 and July 1. Mr Theorharis added that the EASA list would be renewed weekly in the run up to June 15. Meanwhile, the EASA told Telegraph Travel on June 4 that countries should not be using this list to determine travel restrictions. “There is a lot of confusion about what this list means. Its purpose is simply to indicate routes on which extra disinfecting of aircraft should take place to avoid spread of COVID-19. There is no travel ban or travel warning associated with this,” said an EASA spokesperson. Yet the Greek Embassy and tourism board maintains that the current advice (based on the EASA list) still stands, although the country is revising decisions daily. As such, between June 15 and July 1 international flights will run to Athens and Thessaloniki airports - those flying from airports not on the EASA list will only be subject to random testing. For British holidaymakers this will require finding a connection through another airport not on the list, bearing in mind that the list is continually updated. Britons could try to reach Greece through circuitous routes between June 15 and July 1. Wizz Air is running regular flights from Edinburgh to Athens, with a stop in Budapest, which is not currently on the EASA list. There are also regular flights from Edinburgh to Athens, via Zurich - another airport not on the list. A spokesman for Edinburgh Airport said: “Our understanding is that it is the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control that developed the list and it is based on the R number in particular locations. We’ve had no communication with EASA on it. “Given the UK Government’s muddled quarantine policy any such list is rendered irrelevant as no-one will be travelling to or from the UK, causing untold damage to the UK tourism industry and economy.” From July 1, international flights will be permitted to all airports in Greece and visitors will be subject to random tests. However, the Greek government plans to continue to adhere to the EASA list and passengers from “blacklisted” airports might still be subject to further testing measures into July. However, July will bring more flight options from the British airports not on the EASA list. Wizz Air is offering frequent flights in July from Southend to Athens with a connection in Bucharest, which is not currently included on the EASA list. The FCO is advising against all non-essential international travel and travelling against FCO advice will invalidate virtually all insurance policies. From June 8, arrivals in the UK will be subject to a 14-day quarantine.
The airline has taken steps to ensure their new Covid-19 rules are being adhered to by passengers The national flag carrier of Turkey has introduced strict new measures on flights to ensure on-board hygiene. Many airlines have been introducing initiatives to help prevent the spread of coronavirus, which range from new uniforms to extra hand sanitiser. Turkish Airlines has gone one step further to ensure their own rules will be followed, by appointing a ‘hygiene expert’ on each flight. The carrier resumed domestic flights within Turkey on June 1 after two months of being grounded, with a host of new rules. Passengers are now required to wear masks throughout the flight, minimise their movement around the cabin, and socially distance while boarding and disembarking. The new hygiene-focused members of staff will be ensuring passengers comply with all this, as well as making sure passengers don’t remove their masks all at once during food services, instead organising a staggered mask removal throughout the plane. Cold meals in boxes rather than the airline’s usual catering service will help aid this process. Wearing protective shields, the experts will check the airplane for compliance with hygiene rules before, during and after the flight. Rather more unpleasantly, they are also responsible for disinfecting the on-board lavatories, as well as any other spots passengers may have touched. There will be one 'hygiene expert’ assigned per flight, which does beg the question of to what extent a single member of staff will be able to enforce these rules at all times on a large aircraft. Passengers are also presented masks and hygiene kits containing sanitizers before take-off. After each flight, planes are thoroughly disinfected, from seats to windows to lavatories. Airports in Istanbul, Ankara, Izmir, Antalya and Trabzon are all now open for a limited number of daily flights. More domestic airports are set to reopen this week, and Turkish Airlines will resume international flights to Europe on June 18. Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Netherlands, Denmark and Sweden are the first countries the airline will be flying to, and will connect a total of 16 European cities with 14 Turkish cities. The airline is no doubt hoping to reassure passengers that it is safe to fly again with these strict measures. "Following two months spent away from the skies, our global brand is preparing for the new era by coordinating with national and international authorities," the national carrier said in a statement on June 2. As well as needing to comply with on-board rules, Turkish Airline passengers will also have to receive a code from the Health Ministry’s Hayat Eve Sığar (Life Fits Inside Home) app before they can board a flight. The code confirms the user’s health condition; sick passengers or those suspected of being infected are barred from flying. Passengers’ body temperature is also being screened at airport entrances with thermal cameras, and standard ticket checking procedure has now been cancelled. Instead, passengers scan a code on their paperwork into devices installed at the airport. Anyone seeing off a passenger is no longer allowed inside the airport terminal, and all hand baggage has been banned on flights, with the exception of laptops, purses and baby strollers.
Search in the index of any guide book on Portugal and it is unlikely you will find Praia da Luz included and yet the millions of column inches that have appeared about this tiny seaside town in endless languages across the world have made it one of the most notorious spots in Portugal.
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