Trade bodies admitted the warning was a “sensible reflection” of new threats posed by Islamic State but said it would not stop holidaymakers travelling.
The FCO issued the warning last Friday, saying tourists are at risk of attack as a result of Britain’s intervention in Iraq and Syria.
The warning, which applies to travel worldwide, came days before World Travel Market, the largest travel trade show to be held in the UK.
The FCO said the warning reflected a “generalised threat” to Britons by Islamist terrorists, rather than intelligence of a specific attack.
It states: “There is considered to be a heightened threat of terrorist attack globally against UK interests and British nationals from groups or individuals motivated by the conflict in Iraq and Syria. You should be vigilant at this time.”
Derek Moore, chairman of the Association of Independent Tour Operators, said the “well-intentioned” warning may have little impact.
“The generalised nature of the warning, which suggests everyone leaving UK borders is at risk, may be completely accurate but I fear travellers will dismiss it as it doesn’t focus on one region or destination,” he said.
An Abta spokesman said: “The recent change to generic FCO travel advice is a sensible reflection of new challenges posed by IS. This advice is very unlikely to alter customers’ holiday plans, but it will remind them of the need to check FCO advice and remain vigilant both in the UK and overseas.”
David Wiles, managing director of tour operator Discover Egypt, was confident it would not affect bookings.
“In reality, people are learning to live with this [terrorist threats]. This threat is on everyone’s doorstep,” he said.
In August, the domestic terror threat level was raised to “severe”, its second‑highest level, amid growing concern British jihadists fighting alongside IS could return to carry out attacks in this country.
Sourced from Travel Weekly