So are you thinking of going camping this spring? After all camping at Easter is the unofficial start of the camping season. However in the current climate of coronavirus (Covid-19) its important to plan. Currently, in England, we in a national lockdown and camping is not permitted. This is due to expire on 31st March, just before Easter.
We have put this comprehensive guide together to help campers and caravan owners about what is allowed. To make it easier for you to plan.
Here at Camping Sites in Britain, our absolute priority is the health of the UK, campers and campsite owners. We fully believe if we all stick together, then we will be out of this sooner. We will keep this article updated, but please refer to the UK government website for the latest info.
This page was last updated on 25th January 2021.
Am I allowed to go camping in the UK at the moment?
No. Camping and caravan holidays is not currently permitted in England, following the government’s announcement on 4th January. Holidays are not currently permitted in England and people are advised to stay at home except for essential purposes. Some sites are open for essential and key workers. You are not allowed to travel even if it’s your ‘second’ home.
More information on what you can and cannot do in England can be found here.
No. Camping and caravan holidays, including wild camping, are not currently permitted in Scotland. Since the 5th of January, it is a legal requirement to stay at home except for essential reasons.
For more detailed info on what you can and cannot do are available here.
No. Since the 20th December, Wales has moved to alert level four and all hospitality and accommodation businesses must close to holidaymakers. If you live in England or Scotland you can not enter Wales for ‘exercise’.
Further information on what you can and cannot do under level 4 can be found here.
No. Camping and caravan holidays are not permitted in Northern Ireland at the moment. Similar to England, Accommodation can be provided for those already resident; for work-related purposes; for vulnerable people; for those in emergency situations; and people unable to return to their main address. But not for holidays.
More information can be found here.
What about wild camping?
Wild Camping is not permitted in any part of the UK. By law, you should minimise the amount of time you spend outside. Exercise is permitted in all 4 countries, and broadly similar, but essentially this should be done local to you and does not allow you to stay overnight.
When will I be able to go camping again in the UK?
We don’t know. That’s the simple answer. As mentioned above, each country has its own stay at home police and holidays including both camping and wild camping is not permitted. Each nation is constantly reviewing is decision regularly.
However, most people are looking to make bookings for the summer months, which is when we see most of our traffic. This year is forecasted to be a bumper year for UK holidays, with the staycation market the biggest ever. Booking early is advised.
There might be some restrictions, even when they open like last summer around size of groups or what facilities can be open. I would book with campsites which have clear guidelines on what is allowed to open.
What happens if I book for the summer and another lockdown happens?
Let me start by saying that the summer does look positive, there have already been over half a million of the most vulnerable given the vaccine and many in line to receive it, so it does look like lockdown will be lifted before the summer.
That doesnt mean we wont go back into a full or even local lockdowns, so before booking anywhere I would make sure the site has a COVID policy in place so you dont lose out. Whether that means a full refund or a booking at a different date.
It could be either your area is in lockdown or the campsite area.
A way to mitigate this is too book a campsite in your local area, you might be surprised just how many there are near by.
I’ve booked a campsite, but I’ve now got to self-isolate?
Firstly, you should isolate, while its the law its also the right thing to do to stop the spread. Again I would check with the campsite COVID policy and I think all campsites will have a policy.
I think campsite owners will need to be flexible and so will you, but if we all do the right things we will come out of this better.
What if I booked a camping trip in Europe?
This gets even more complicated, currently you can’t travel abroad for holidays, just like you can’t travel within the UK for a holiday.
There is talk from the English government about ‘quarantine hotels’ so if you return from abroad you have to isolate yourself for 10 days at hotel.
Different countries have different rules, and this is before we look at what impact Brexit will have on camping in Europe. It becomes quite difficult if for example you have to travel through one country to another and they have different laws and guidelines.
This year I would advise to book a UK camping holiday.
This document will be updated as new guidance is issues by the four different countires