Three Levels of COVID-19 Lockdown Restrictions in the UK

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The United Kingdom is taking on a brand new approach to their COVID-19 lockdown restrictions: Rather than employ a single ruleset to be applied nationwide, they’re demoting their ruleset by “levels” based on how COVID-19 is being transmitted in certain cities. 

Set in place as of Saturday, here is how they look like…

Tier 1 (“medium risk”): No indoor or outdoor groups larger than 6 regardless of the activity, certain businesses must remain closed between 10pm and 5am (unless for delivery), weddings and funerals can resume.

Tier 2 (“high risk”): On top of Tier 1 rules… no socializing with anybody outside of your “support bubble” or household (regardless of whether it’s in a public place or your house), possible restrictions of alcohol sales, potential closure of gyms and public buildings if the city deems it appropriate. 

Tier 3 (“very high risk”): On top of Tier 2 rules… full closure of bars and pubs, no socializing with anybody you don’t live with, no household mixing while attending places of worship, high discouragement of traveling anywhere outside the area except for essential duties. 

Tier 2 will be applied to areas such as North-East Derbyshire, Barrow-in-Furness, Essex, and Elmbridge… along with major cities like London. Tier 3, however, is only being applied to Liverpool for now, while Manchester is creeping its way up towards being a “very high risk” area too.

It’s an interesting system that appears to reward individuals who have managed to minimize the spread of COVID-19. And one where improvement can lead to a city or region being classified in a lower-risk tier. But we’ll have to wait and see if this approach actually ends up being effective. 

What do YOU think about the UK’s new approach towards COVID-19 lockdown restrictions? Is it what they should have done from day one, or will this be yet another disaster? Let me know your thoughts by replying to this newsletter!

Boeing’s 737 Max FINALLY Gets Approval for Flying in Europe

The Boeing 737 Max has arguably become the black sheep of the aviation industry. It’s the one aircraft that nobody has wanted to be associated with ever since it was grounded 1.5 years ago due to two fatal crashes happening in a short period of time. 

But thanks to the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and their regulatory approval, the 737 Max could start flying in the sky before 2020 comes to an end. 

EASA’s executive director Patrick Ky had this to say when pressed for further comment: 

“Our analysis is showing that this is safe, and the level of safety reached is high enough for us…What we discussed with Boeing is the fact that with the third sensor, we could reach even higher safety levels.”

When this news broke on Friday morning, Boeing shares went up 2% before the market was open for trading. Makes sense when you consider that Europe is by and far the biggest market for Boeing. 

All they need is that green-light regulatory approval from the Federal Aviation Administration in the United States, and they should hopefully be on the road towards redemption. 

Major Cities Worldwide Are Like “Ghost Towns” Now

Have you ever seen those movies filmed in major cities where the entire area is completely empty, devoid of any road traffic or strangers on the street? The COVID-19 pandemic has made this fictional film scenario a reality for many of these major cities and it’s a rather unsettling sight to see with your own eyes.

According to research done by analysts at the Financial Times:

  • Paris, France has seen a 40% drop in tourist visits
  • London, UK has had their visits to retailers and restaurants drop down to 33% of pre-pandemic levels
  • Manhattan, New York has had amenity visits slashed to less than 50% of pre-pandemic levels
  • Decreases in leased office spaces are as follows: -66% for New York, -59% for London, -77% for Tokyo in Q2 2020 compared to Q2 2019

Although the hard numbers were not present for this particular factor, mobility in these major cities and others have seen a dramatic drop in mobility. People simply aren’t leaving their homes and exploring the city like they used to. 

And with TWO TIMES the number of employees working from home instead of the office within the United States alone, the emergence of the “remote work” economy is real and will continue to have catastrophic effects on the future of major cities worldwide…

Outdoor Dining in NYC With Colder Weather: Is it Possible?

The fall season is well underway and winter is right around the corner. For New York City, a metropolis that experiences the worst of all four seasons, the future of outdoor dining for struggling restaurants remains uncertain. 

But new guidelines released by Mayor Bill de Blasio could potentially give outdoor dining a final gasp of breath until the falling winter snow proves to be too much for diners. 

Some of the changes include: 

  • Sidewalk setups being permitted to use portable propane heaters and natural gas radiant heaters
  • Street setups and sidewalk setups will be allowed to use electric radiant heaters
  • Capacity for indoor dining remains at 25%

Keep in mind in less than 50% of all the restaurants in NYC have engaged in outdoor dining. Due to the way certain restaurants are setup and where they are located, outdoor dining simply isn’t feasible (and thus many have to resort to delivery and curb-side pickup)

Yet for the few restaurants who are able to offer outdoor dining, this could be considered as a 30-day extension to milk their patios for all they’re worth before it starts snowing…

2022 Is When Las Vegas Returns to Normal

Las Vegas still remains a shadow of what it once was and nobody knows when things will ever go back to the way they were. It sure as hell won’t be this year, and even a full restoration in 2021 remain uncertain at best. 

But Michael Gaughan, who just opened up a new equestrian arena spanning 40,000 feet at his South Point Casino, believes that 2022 is the year to look out for. 

During that opening event, he had the following to say: 

“I’ve been here since 1952 and this is probably the worst thing that’s ever happened to (Las Vegas)… I don’t think it can get any worse. Hopefully, by the end of March or April, this will be over. Strip hotels will have their work cut out for them… by the start of 2022, we should be back to completely normal.”

I hope his vision of “back to normal” includes restoring employment and helping all of the disenfranchised workers get their jobs back in some capacity. Economic prosperity will be completely pointless without the very workers who provide the backbone for Vegas’ 24/7 lifestyle and its (former) never-ending success. 

International Beach Cities for Retirement on $16,600/Year

An avid reader of MarketWatch wrote in and asked where they could retire making $16,600 per year, which is just below what people receive on AVERAGE from their Social Security benefits per year. But they also wanted to live in a place with warm waters, blue skies, and a beach atmosphere. 

Tough sell! But contributor Catey Hill insisted that a few places would match the seemingly unreasonable criteria: 

Gulfport, Mississippi: There are apartments that can be rented for just under $600 per month, not to mention that the cost of living is 19% lower than the nation-wide average. But even with all retirement income being exempt from taxation, you would have to add in some part-time work to cover the bills. 

Pedasi, Panama: Monthly apartment rentals for $500/month are possible if you look closely, but you’ll most likely be further away from the ocean as you’d like. And if you’re under $1,000/month in income, retirees can benefit from the “pensionado” program offered by the country. On the plus side, it’s a rural small-town community with under 5,000 residents!

Mazatlán, Mexico: If you manage your money right, you can find a place costing $800 to $1,000 per month without worrying about your bank account. You can still receive Social Security checks while living there, but don’t make it 100% of your income. And you WILL need a minimum amount of money in investments, along with a set monthly pension income, on order to obtain residency. 

What other cities around the world can YOU think of to help this person retire on such a low annual income? Reply to this newsletter and share these hidden treasures of the world with us!

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