Tag Archives: money

Brit slams green list tests as way for Government to ‘make money’ – ‘wouldn’t do it again’

Gibraltar has been on the Government’s green list for travel since May, meaning Britons can fly off to the overseas territory without the need to self-isolate on their return home. While the experience may sound straightforward, it’s one that comes at a soaring cost.

According to Emma, a London-based recruiter, it is this element of the restrictions around travel that put her off jetting off to another green country in the future.

Emma and her friends made the last-minute decision to switch their long weekend holiday booking from Ibiza to Gibraltar after it became clear Spain would not make it onto the green list.

“We were kind of watching the news and thought: ‘This doesn’t look good,’” she told Express.co.uk.

“We had kind of heard the rumours popping up on Twitter and said: ‘Should we do it?’

“We just switched everything before the actual announcement came out, but within 24 hours of that announcement, there wasn’t a single hotel room left in Gibraltar. We got really lucky.

READ MORE: Spain quarantine rules backlash: ‘Avoid Spain at all costs’

To travel back to the UK from a green list country, arrivals must take a COVID-19 test within 72 hours before departure – a rule the women were prepared for.

Yet, according to Emma, it seems the Government are keen to “make money” from these rules.

She explained: “You get a test when you arrive in Gibraltar, but to get back into Britain, it’s actually quite a lot of work.

“Even though you get a test when you arrive, and my test was within the 72 hours of me returning, the free test from the Gibraltar authorities doesn’t count as a UK recognised test, even though it’s a part of the UK.”

She continued: “We had to pay to get another departure test, literally the same day 15 minutes after the first test, at the cost of £30 because it comes with a UK QR code.

“This is despite the fact they are administered in the exact same place, the exact same way, from the exact same people.

“But the UK one cost us £30 because it comes with a certificate and not just a text message, which was quite annoying.”

Though Emma is fully vaccinated, she points to an additional cost which the particularly vaccinated members of her travel party were also slapped with.

“Two of the girls had only had one vaccine but only found out that non-vaccinated people needed a negative test at the airport.

“We had booked everything and we had already checked it.

“We had completed all of our Passenger Locator Forms and booked our test for arrival.

“Then one of us just happened to check and found that out.

“Considering Gibraltar had all of our contact details, no one emailed or texted.

“The UK Government didn’t text us, and the airline didn’t let us know.”

She added: “A lot of people were complaining when they went because they got slammed at the airport with extra tests. A lot of people were moaning.”

Emma, who is fully vaccinated, says it is these costly requirements that make holidays in the near future out of reach for many, including herself.

“It’s a risk,” she said.

“For a weekend trip, I probably wouldn’t do it again.

“If I was going to go abroad for a little bit longer, maybe, but then you get the scramble like when Portugal was moved from the green list to the amber list.

“If Britain decides to change their mind, you’re potentially screwed.

“So I probably won’t travel too much.”

She added: “It’s just an annoyance because you don’t have a choice if you have to quarantine.

“Test to release is a lot [of money].

“So unless your work is very, very flexible, or you are an office worker who gets to work from home it’s not worth the risk.”

Author: Aimee Robinson
Read more here >>> Daily Express

Red Dead Online Summer update release date and new Blood Money trailer reveal

Red Dead Redemption 2 Online is getting fresh content and more ways to enjoy the Wild West this month.

While Red Dead Online hasn’t proven as popular as GTA V’s multiplayer experience, that doesn’t mean there aren’t a lot of fans out there counting down until the next big patch is released.

For now, Rockstar Games has only revealed the release date of the Red Dead Online Summer update, which has been set for Tuesday, July 13.

The new expansion is called Blood Money and will include “a slew of new unlawful ventures to the frontier.”

That doesn’t tell us much, but the good news is that fans won’t have to wait long before they find out all the latest juicy details.

Rockstar Games has confirmed that the Red Dead Online Summer update trailer will be shared on July 7.

No set time has been confirmed for when the new footage will drop but we do know it will come bundled with a full news report.

Fans have been told to head over to the Rockstar Newswire, which is where the latest information will be shared.

And To help players get ready, a range of week-long bonuses are now available, with Rockstar telling fans today:

“Winning in any Showdown Mode this week will earn players a Reward for 30% off an Ability Card Upgrade, while completing “Kill Them, Each and Every One” from A Land of Opportunities will earn you a Reward for a free Treasure Map. Moonshiners above Rank 100 who win any Showdown Mode will also receive an Offer for 3 Gold Bars off any Moonshine Bar Theme.

“Long tenured Red Dead Online players that are Rank 100 or above will receive an Offer for 50% off a select Weapon, while everybody who purchases a weapon modification this week will get an Offer for 40% off a select Revolver as well as 200 Express Revolver Ammo. Plus all Weapon and Pamphlet Rank requirements at the Fence have been lifted this week.”

More highlights from this week’s Red Dead Online active rewards can be found below:

Double RDO$ and XP in A Land of Opportunities Missions, plus a Reward for a free Treasure Map when completing the “Kill Them, Each and Every One” mission.

Double RDO$ and XP on all Showdown Modes, plus a Reward for 30% off an Ability Card for winning any Showdown Mode.

An Offer for 50% off a select Weapon for all players at Rank 100 or above, and an Offer for 3 Gold Bars off any Bar Theme for Moonshiners above Rank 100 that win any Showdown Mode.

Weapon Modification Purchase Bonuses: An Offer for 40% off a select Revolver, as well as 200 Express Revolver Ammo, for all players that purchase a weapon modification this week. No Rank Requirements this week on any Weapons or Pamphlets sold at the Fence.

New Discounts: 40% off all Ability Cards, Weapons sold at Fences, and Weapon Crafting Pamphlets, plus 30% off all Shotguns, Sniper Rifles, Turkoman Horses, Hats, and Bandoliers.

New Prime Gaming Benefits: Players that connect to Prime Gaming before August 2 will receive Rewards for a free Saddle, 2 free Treasure Maps, and an Offer for 40% off the Fast Travel Post.

Author: Gary Jones
Read more here >>> Daily Express

Briton slams EU restrictions after losing holiday money – ‘it has been a nightmare’

Due to concerns about the Delta variant, some EU countries like France, Germany, Portugal or Italy, have tightened entry restrictions on UK tourists, imposing mandatory quarantine for non-vaccinated Britons.

Some other nations like the Balearic Islands in Spain, are also urging Governments to impose tougher entry requirements for Britons going there on holiday.

Italy changed its rules last week without warning, introducing a mandatory five-day quarantine for all UK visitors.

A Briton who had a holiday booked in the country said it is “literally a nightmare” to go on holiday from the UK this summer.

“We had a trip booked to Italy and with the changes in the restrictions last week, we were forced to change our holiday completely.

“We lost a lot of money,” he admitted.

READ MORE: Camping and caravan: New bill threatens wild campers with jail time

“As we didn’t book directly with the airline, our travel agent charged us enormous fees to change the destination of our flights and didn’t allow us to get a refund.

“We have now rebooked flights for a destination that hasn’t imposed mandatory quarantine for Britons yet, which is Greece, but those ‘quarantine-free’ countries are now way more expensive,” he explained.

“It has literally been a nightmare trying to organise a holiday out of the UK this summer.”

When booking a holiday, now Britons have to take into consideration not only the UK’s traffic light system in case they have to self-isolate on their return, but also if the destination has imposed mandatory quarantine or has shut its borders to UK tourists completely.

What do you think? Join the debate in the comments section below


The holidaymaker continued: “The UK is in a tough situation right now. It is almost impossible to go on holiday from the UK.

“This summer is way worse than last summer in terms of being able to enter other countries.”

Italy is also on the UK’s amber travel list, meaning a mandatory at home quarantine is required upon return.

The holidaymaker explained that hotel owners in Italy seem “desperate” for Britons to go there, as some advised him to go anyway and suggested he could skip the quarantine.

“Obviously it’s hard to judge but we need some kind of clear indications, both from the UK and the EU side, so we know where to book our next holiday without being afraid restrictions might change in two days,” he said.

Although the majority of countries are following German and France suit and imposing stricter entry requirement for UK arrivals, other countries like Greece have refused to follow the EU’s steps.

Greece’s prime minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis slammed the potential ban and rejected calls from Angela Merkel for British tourists to be quarantined on arrival.

“My personal assessment is that there is no need to impose additional restrictions on travel from countries where this mutation already exists.

“At the end that is up to the individual member states to take those decisions,” he said.

Read more here >>> Daily Express

NCAA adopts temporary rules allowing athletes to earn money off name, image and likeness

The decision effectively suspends NCAA restrictions on payments to athletes for sponsorship deals, online endorsements and personal appearances.

NCAA athletes will be eligible to make money on their name, image and likeness (NIL) starting Thursday after the NCAA announced it had adopted new, unified, interim NIL rules for all incoming and current athletes.

“This is an important day for college athletes,” NCAA President Mark Emmert said in a press release.

The NCAA’s decision to suspend restrictions on payments to athletes for things such as sponsorship deals, online endorsements and personal appearances applies to all three divisions or some 460,000 athletes.

Emmert added these policies would be temporary as the NCAA continues, “to work with Congress to develop a solution that will provide clarity on a national level.”

Some states already have laws that lay out what and how collegiate athletes are currently allowed to benefit. Others do not. The policies the NCAA adopted Wednesday reflected that. 

Under these policies, athletes, recruits and their families are allowed to profit from their name, image and likeness as long as it is within the current laws of whatever state the school is in. In states where there aren’t currently NIL laws on the books, there are no such restrictions. All athletes however, should report their NIL activities to their school.

The policies laid out by the NCAA are not sacrosanct, however. The interim policies also permit the individual schools and conferences to develop their own protocols.

“The new interim policy provides college athletes and their families some sense of clarity around name, image and likeness, but we are committed to doing more,” Division III Presidents Council chair Fayneese Miller said. “We need to continue working with Congress for a more permanent solution.”

The Associated Press contributed to this reporting.

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Author: Joe Calabrese
This post originally appeared on CBS8 – Sports

UK holiday costs surge: Britons could save money by booking on specific days of the week

Ongoing international travel restrictions have resulted in another busy summer for UK camping, caravan and staycation providers. In many cases, though, this heightened demand means soaring prices and limite

In some cases, holidaymakers have claimed UK staycation costs have set them back almost double what a European beach break might have.

According to BBC Radio 4’s You and Yours, some holiday cottages on offer by Sykes Holiday Cottages during the summer holidays in popular areas are as much as £8,000 for a week.

Yet, in a year where many Britons have faced tightened purse strings, these sky-high prices might be out of reach.

According to Craig Anderson, an expert from CouponHunt.org, saving money could be as simple as booking on a specific day of the week.

READ MORE: Royal Caribbean cruise ship hit by new coronavirus cases

While families may be tied to weekends and school holidays, those who are without children should aim to be flexible with their dates.

“For those without children, travel off-peak times,” said Mr Anderson.

“Holidays are a lot cheaper during the week and in school term times.

“If you do have children, during the week can be cheaper than at the weekend.”

Flexibility is also useful when picking your destination.

“If you’re looking for a popular city or seaside holiday, choose accommodation slightly further away,” said Mr Anderson.

“This could result in a lower price but a better value.”

Yet, even with these tips, the cost of summer travel is pricing out many families.

Research from Which? suggests that prices for UK holidays have risen by more than a third this summer.

Kat Lee, chief executive of charity the Family Holiday Association, also pointed out UK holidays have never been a cheap option.

“I think the major cost of a holiday abroad used to come from the travel but that hasn’t been the case now for at least 30 years so I think that is a rather outdated perception,” she told You and Yours.

“Pre-pandemic times it wouldn’t be unusual for a week at a low-cost all-inclusive resort in the Mediterranean to cost less than a week in a cottage at the British seaside,” she said.

“So not being able to travel abroad this year doesn’t mean that families are getting a cheaper holiday than in the UK.”

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Travel Feed

Giovanna and Tom Fletcher apologise for claiming money from furlough scheme after backlash

Giovanna Fletcher, 36, has taken to Instagram to issue a lengthy apology for using the government’s furlough scheme to pay one of her employees during the coronavirus pandemic, despite being worth an estimated £8 million. The star is said to have claimed the funds alongside her McFly guitarist husband, Tom Fletcher, 35, just weeks after winning I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! in Gwrych Castle, North Wales last year.

In view of her two million followers, the mother-of-three addressed the claims which were made over the weekend.

She wrote: “Hi everyone, we’ve always had a very honest and open relationship with you all on here so we thought it was important to address questions that some of you have rightly asked us in the last 24 hours.

“This weekend there was an article in one of the Sunday papers about us using the government furlough scheme.

Giovanna continued: “While parts of the article were inaccurate (including all of the figures mentioned), it is true that we did follow financial advice to furlough someone we employ.”

More to follow…

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Celebrity News Feed

Pound to euro exchange rate: ‘Extremely sluggish’ start to the week – travel money advice

The pound to euro has been trading in a tight range in recent weeks. With Boris Johnson announcing yesterday that the final stage of lockdown will be pushed back by a month, should you swap your travel money now?

He said: “Markets were, yet again, moribund yesterday, with the week getting off to an extremely sluggish start. 

“There is, sadly, little on the docket that suggests today will be any different, with this morning’s UK labour market data likely to be ignored, and GBPEUR happy to do little more than tread water around €1.16.”

Yesterday was similar news when the pound continued to trade around the same mark.

At the time, Michael explained: “Sterling-euro continues to trade in a tight range just north of the €1.16 handle, with the market continuing to lack impetus to make a decisive move in either direction – broadly mirroring the broader G10 market, in fact.

Pound to euro in ‘tight range’ – market lacking ‘impetus’ [EXPERT]
Portugal allows Britons to enter without negative PCR test [INSIGHT]
BA crew put back onto furlough amid travel restriction uncertainty [EXPLAINER]

“With a quiet data docket in store today, the market is likely to do little more than mark time once more.”

George Vessey, UK Currency Strategist, Western Union Business Solutions, also explained that the delay to the full lifting of restrictions is a drag on the pound’s value.

He explained yesterday: “On the data front this week, jobs numbers are due out first thing Tuesday morning, and should show more signs of improvement.

“Inflation data drops in on Wednesday morning and retail sales wraps up the week on Friday morning.

“Against the euro, sterling has risen for five weeks on the bounce and lingers just under the €1.17 handle. Strong UK data this week could be enough to trigger a breakout north of this current resistance level.”

At the end of last week, the euro suffered a wave of “selling pressure” as traders “digested the dovish European Central Bank (ECB) meeting and favoured the cheap US dollar ahead of the Fed’s meeting”.

The expert added: “Amidst a lack of top-tier European data this week, investors will be focusing on the Fed’s rhetoric and how it compares to the ECB last week.

“The expectation is most major central banks will remain on hold from tightening monetary policy despite inflation worries, but a shift in policy stance could soon upend the calmness of financial markets at present.”

What does this mean for travel money?

With the current news that Boris Johnson is pushing back the date for lifting restrictions due to the rapid spread of the Delta variant, holidaymakers are once again faced with uncertainty about travel.

James Lynn, CEO and co-founder of Currensea explained that those heading on holiday should only swap their money once they are certain that plans are going ahead.

Ian Strafford-Taylor, CEO at travel money specialist FairFX said: “Yesterday’s confirmation of a delay to the so-called ‘Freedom Day’ didn’t come as a shock to many, and it seems the pound is weathering the storm too, with almost no movement against the euro compared to this time yesterday.

“Brits are yet to see how this delay to restrictions at home will affect their chances of an overseas summer holiday. However fresh speculation that foreign travel is unlikely to reopen to popular European destinations before August won’t do much to ease people’s minds. This comes as major airlines including British Airways, Virgin Atlantic and easyJet have started cancelling flights set to take off before July 19.

“Although it’s yet to be confirmed, this news will be a big blow for holidaymakers who have their hopes pinned on a summer break after so many months in lockdown.”

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Travel Feed

State pension age: 958,000 Britons missing out on £1.8billion – can you claim extra money?

At least £15billion of benefits went unclaimed last year, national poverty charity Turn2us has warned. More than 7.1 million people missed out on these benefits, increasing their risk of being pushed into financial hardship or even poverty.

The charity found 63 percent of this age group have never checked.

Pensioners are also the least likely to claim the benefits they have a right to, with one in three missing out on Pension Credit – a benefit which some people of state pension age may qualify for.

In response to this issue, Turn2us has released a new Benefits Calculator tool.

It has been designed in partnership with people who have lived expertise.

The charity is urging people to check their entitlement and start the application process as soon as possible.

Sonya Ruparel, Director of Programmes and Partnerships at Turn2us, said: “There is an endemic issue of unclaimed benefits in the UK.

“The confusing, sometimes hostile, and often stigmatising world of social security has led to millions of people not claiming their entitlements.

“Our new tool sets out to simplify, de-mystify and compassionately support people to access the money they are due.

It takes around 10 minutes to find out what benefits a person is entitled to, and can help users to start the application process.

It is user friendly for people of all digital abilities and the Turn2us helpline can do calculations for people without internet access.

Furthermore, the tool clarifies the implications of choosing between staying on legacy benefits versus Universal Credit, and whether individuals are eligible for a move.

Turn2us also highlighted how £775million in Child Benefit went unclaimed by 503,000 people.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Finance Feed