Coronavirus: can I buy and travel to a holiday home in Spain, France, Italy, Portugal or the Alps? | Home

Britons are dreaming of an escape to the chateau… or a gîte, finca or palazzo — somewhere in the sun and anywhere but the UK.

During lockdown, estate agencies and websites advertising homes abroad have reported a huge increase in traffic while we were stuck at home unable to travel. Visits to Rightmove Overseas were a third higher this May than during the same month last year: the top destinations are the Costa del Sol in Spain, the Dordogne in France and the Algarve in Portugal.

It’s no mere lockdown fantasy. Chris White, owner of Ideal Homes, in Portugal, says: “In the last 10 days alone we’ve sold four properties.”

Potential househunters are relying on a combination of past knowledge, virtual tours and maps to

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