Reality stars and influencers slammed for bragging about trips abroad

Backlash against influencers begins: Reality TV and social media stars are trolled for bragging about trips abroad ‘for work’ after Priti Patel slammed them for ‘showing off in the sun’

  • The Home Secretary slammed reality TV stars for bragging about their holidays 
  • Scores of reality TV stars and millionaires have jetted to Dubai in lockdown 
  • Expat is now unable to go home to see family because of rising infection rates 
  • One government source claims high profile people are exploiting grey areas
  • Says, ‘they’re getting away with it and what they are claiming as work is not’

Influencers boasting of sunshine foreign breaks amid the global pandemic are now facing a furious public backlash after they were slammed by the home secretary. 

As they shared photos from sun loungers, lockdown had appeared not to apply to so-called influencers and models who ‘used loop-holes’ to jet off the sunnier climes under the guise of work.

But yesterday they came under fire for setting a bad example. 

Amid mounting public anger, Priti Patel criticised those who have been holidaying in the sun when they have been told to stay at home. 

She said going on holiday was ‘not an exemption’ as she unveiled a strict borders clampdown to slow the spread of Covid, telling the Commons: ‘People should simply not be travelling. 

‘We see plenty of influencers showing off where they are – mainly sunny places.’

As the criticism intensifies, members of the public appear to be taking umbrage with their tone deaf posts from Dubai – now dubbed ‘Covid Cosablanca.’ 

Hostile messages on Instagram and Twitter pages are accusing them of recklessly spreading the virus and putting the NHS under increasing strain. 

Many claim they jetted off for ‘unavoidable work trips’ – with some even going so far as to suggest that their social media posts should make them ‘key workers’. 

Laura Anderson, who appeared on Love Island in 2018, moaned about how ‘hard it was to be an influencer’ after she was met with a backlash about her Dubai trip, before claiming she went as a ‘coping mechanism’ to deal with Covid.

Members of the public have hit out at reality TV stars for taking trips abroad, despite their insistence it was ‘for work’ 

Jay Rutland admitted he was ‘loving’ being away with his wife Tamara Ecclestone and their children


While celebrities are boasting about their sunshine trips, fans appear to be less than impressed 

Laura Anderson, who appeared on Love Island in 2018, has faced a backlash in the wake of her trip to Dubai 


Love Island star Georgia Steel (pictured left) was in Dubai but has recently been posting snaps beside crystal blue waters in The Maldives. Pictured right: Molly Mae Hague posted snaps in the Maldvies, but is now back in the UK

Scores of reality TV stars ‘used loop holes’ to flee to Dubai to lounge in luxury hotels, pose for pictures with cocktails on sun loungers and enjoy beach parties.

Love Island stars ‘lose THOUSANDS of fans’ after flaunting their lavish Dubai work trips as fed-up Brits hit back

Love Island stars who jetted to Dubai amid the coronavirus pandemic have reportedly lost thousands of Instagram fans. 

It is thought fed-up Brits have hit back by unfollowing the stars accounts with Anton Danyluk, 25, and Laura Anderson, 31, dropping a combined 26,000, reports The Sun. 

Anton, who is thought to have lost 14,000 followers, shared that he was heading to Dubai on December 10 and has since posted glimpses of his impressive hotel views and dips in the pool with his 1m fans.

While Laura Anderson, who has reportedly dropped a sizeable 12,000 followers, sparked a backlash when she said it was ‘really hard’ to be an influencer following unimpressed comments on her Dubai snaps.

Others thought to have taken a hit in the Instagram numbers include Kaz Crossley, 27, who has reportedly lost 7,000 followers since touching down in the city.

While Gabby Allen is thought to have lost 2,000 and Josh Ritchie 8,000. 

TOWIE star James Lock, who is in Dubai with his girlfriend Yazmin Oukhellou is also said to have seen 1,000 people disappear from his followers. 

Just yesterday, businessman Jay Rutland, husband of Formula One heiress, Tamara Ecclestone, posted a picture of the pair on a beach in sun-soaked Dubai – where they appear to have been for at least a month. 

Expats working in Dubai have accused them of ‘taking the f***ing p***’ by claiming they are in the city for work, and risking spreading the virus to residents by partying and flouting social distancing.   

And government sources told MailOnline people have been ‘exploiting grey areas’, with ‘high profile people getting away with it,’ adding, ‘what they are claiming as work is not.’  

The Prime Minister yesterday warned that Brits leaving the UK will be quizzed at the border to make sure they are not jetting off for a holiday.

Addressing MPs yesterday, Boris Johnson warned: ‘I want to make clear that under the stay home regulations, it is illegal to leave home to travel abroad for leisure purposes.

‘We will enforce this at ports and airports by asking people why they are leaving and instructing them to return home if they do not have a valid reason to travel.’

Molly-Mae Hague, Maura Higgins, Amber Davies, Anton Danyluk, Georgia Harrison and Kady McDermott were among those to jet off before the third national lockdown.  

Meanwhile the husband of Formula One heiress Tamara Ecclestone, 36, today shared a photograph of him and his family in Dubai. The couple usually reside in a £45million home in London.

Businessman Jay Rutland, who shared a sun-soaked snap on a beach in the UAE city, admitted he was ‘loving’ being away with wife Tamara and their children.

Sophia Peschisolido, 23, daughter of Tory peer Karren Brady, has also shared pictures of herself in Dubai. 

One influencer in Dubai sparked fury this week by claiming to be an essential worker. 

Sheridan Mordew, 24, who has been there since the start of January, told This Morning on ITV it was an ‘essential work trip’ to provide sunny content for fans and ‘motivate them’.

Laura Anderson claims flying to Dubai was ‘a coping mechanism’ 

 

By Laura Fox for MailOnline 

Laura Anderson has insisted that flying to Dubai was ‘a coping mechanism’ during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Love Island star, 31, said she ‘felt guilty the whole time’ she was away after claiming she’d flown to the UAE for a ‘business trip’ following backlash towards influencers bending travel restrictions to fly abroad. 

During an Instagram Q and A, after being asked whether she felt guilty about being in Dubai, she said: ‘I felt guilty the whole time. I don’t think anyone realised how bad the strain would get, and how quickly. So hearing people upset, I felt horrific.’ 

Dubai had been an ideal choice for many as visitors at the time weren’t required to quarantine upon their return to the UK.

Many stars have insisted their trips are for ‘work’ with the government asking UK residents to avoid unnecessary travel.

Expats in Dubai have told MailOnline they are furious about the number of celebrity influencers coming to the city ‘for work’. 

One expat told MailOnline: ‘They’re taking the f***ing p***’.

Lauren Morgan, who moved to the city with her husband in January 2020, said: ‘All the ‘influencers’ coming out to Dubai for ‘work’ has made me so angry, using loop holes to holiday and potentially spreading the virus.’ 

Ministers are understood to have been increasingly concerned about social media ‘infuencers’ and other celebrities turning up in exotic destinations while the rest of the country is in lockdown.

One government source told MailOnline people appeared to have been exploiting grey areas about what counts as ‘essential’ work trips.

‘It is quite clear there are some high profile people getting away with it and what they are claiming as work is not,’ they said. 

Ms Morgan moved to the UAE with her husband in January 2020, returning to the UK once to see her family. 

She added: ‘I have booked a flight back to the UK at the end of April. 

‘With these new rules possibly coming into place, I have to choose between not going home to see my parents who are in their late 70s or going back for the three weeks and spending 10 days of those and potentially a small fortune to quarantine. 

‘All I want to do is go home to visit my family.

‘Moving here in January 2020, this was not the deal I made with my husband, I was supposed to be able to travel home to visit family as much as I wanted to. 

‘People holidaying/partying is just delaying that for a lot of people from happening and it’s infuriating.

‘Rules are not always being followed by people from the UK (and I’m sure many others) who have not had to follow the same strict rules as we have in Dubai since March 2020 and is now a way of life to wear a mask and keep your distance and minimise socialising/large group gathering.’  

The Home Secretary slammed reality TV stars for bragging about their holidays and people ‘turning up with their skis at St Pancras Station’, adding, ‘Going on holiday is not an exemption.’

Chloe Ferry, who travelled out to Dubai at the end of last year – before lockdown measures were introduced, originally claimed she had hoped to stay for ‘two months’


Hard graft: Yazmin Oukhellou told fans she was, ‘[In Dubai] for work purposes, for business’, but added: ‘Obviously we’ll make the most of it while we’re here as well.’ Right, Laura Anderson was met with a furious backlash when she moaned about how hard it was to be an ‘influencer’

Anton Danyluk (pictured left) shared that he was heading to Dubai on December 10. He is since thought to have lost 14,000 followers on Instagra. And when approached by the Guardian about his so-called work trip, a publicist for Anton – who has been in Dubai since 10 December – asked if the Love Island star would receive a fee in return for a comment.

James Lock (pictured) and Yazmin Oukhellou have been out in Dubai with James regularly posing with a laptop


Reality stars who fled to Dubai before England’s third lockdown began look set to be returning to 10-day compulsory quarantine stay at hotels near Britain’s airports. Kady McDermott (left) and Maura Higgins (right) were among the stars to travel to the UAE before lockdown began 

Many stars have insisted their trips are for ‘work’ with the government asking UK residents to avoid unnecessary travel. Pictured: Geordie Shore’s Sophie Kasaei in Dubai

Who has gone where? The hard working ‘influencers’ on ‘essential businesses’  

Scores of reality TV stars have been sharing photos from their sunny ‘work’ breaks, including;   

Kimberley Garner (she was in Barbados and is now in Miami)

Lottie Moss (in Mexico)

Love Island stars; Amber Davies

Anton Danyluk

Georgia Harrison (claiming she lives in Dubai now) 

Kaz Crossley

Elle Brown 

Amber Gill

Montana Brown (in Barbados) 

Tamara Ecclestone  is in Dubai with businessman husband Jay Rutland and their children

Kady McDermott – who jetted to the Maldives before going to Dubai

Geordie Shore’s Sophie Kasaei 

Georgia Steel (was in Dubai and is now in The Maldives) 

The Only Way is Essex (TOWIE) stars; 

James Lock and Yazmin Oukhellou  

Ella Rae Wise  

Some have since returned to the UK, including;

Sophia Peschisolido, 23, daughter of Tory peer Karren Brady

Francesca Allen

Kady McDermott – jetted to the Maldives before going to Dubai

Vogue Williams and Spencer Matthews (they flew to St Barts. late last year)

Sophie Piper (it was reported she’d jetted to the Maldives apparently breaking the rules)

Sam Faiers (she flew to The Maldives for her 30th earlier this month)

Wes Nelson

Ferne McCann

Chloe Ferry

Laura Anderson, recently returned to Glasgow

Malin Andersson

Amber Turner

Tiffany and Lucy Watson (were in Barbados)

Molly Mae and Tommy Fury visited early December and then squeezed in a trip to the Maldives before returning to the UK

Maura Higgins and Christopher Taylor, now back in the UK

Peter Crouch and Abbey Clancy, who celebrated Christmas there

Rochelle and Marvin Humes, who enjoyed a family winter vacation there in mid-December, before lockdown rules came into force

Love Island’s Laura Anderson was forced to delete some of the comments on her bikini snaps after receiving backlash for sharing her exploits in Dubai.

Insisting her job was ‘hard’ to do, she moaned: ‘This whole thing about everyone hating influencers, I’m just like f**k.. this is what I do for a job at the minute. I don’t want to feel c**p.’

Yesterday, she revealed she had ordered a Covid test after suffering with a blocked nose upon returning to Glasgow where she is self isolating.  

And when approached by the Guardian about his so-called work trip, a publicist for Anton Danyluk – who has been in Dubai since 10 December – asked if the Love Island star would receive a fee in return for a comment. 

Earlier this week, it was revealed private flights into a Dubai airport soared by 78% at the end of last year compared to 2019, as travellers, including Love Island stars, rushed to escape lockdown and spend Christmas there.

MailOnline has been inundated with emails from people in Spain, the USA, Canada, Pakistan and South America worried that they may be caught up in the new quarantine scheme and admitting they may rush home to avoid it. 

The Home Secretary heralded a huge squeeze on ‘non-essential’ journeys as she revealed that even during lockdown individuals have been flouting the rules – including by turning up at borders carrying skis.

In a statement to MPs, she said they now face being turned away, swiping: ‘Going on holiday is not a valid reason to travel.’

Ms Patel also declared that Britons returning from around 30 ‘red list’ Covid countries will be forced to quarantine in hotels for 10 days at their own expense.

MailOnline understands that hundreds of arrivals each day are expected to be escorted directly from airports to rooms, where they will have to stay for the duration of their isolation and pay a bill estimated at £1,500 – although ministers hope the numbers will ‘fall through the floor’ as people avoid coming to the UK.

It will only affect British travellers, as foreign citizens who have been in the countries are already banned from entering altogether.

Ms Patel herself is believed to have been pushing for a much tougher regime alongside Matt Hancock and Michael Gove, but was overruled after resistance from Rishi Sunak, Dominic Raab and Grant Shapps, and warnings it would ‘kill’ the aviation industry.

The government is facing the prospect of a revolt from UK nations, with Nicola Sturgeon threatening to impose her own more brutal curbs in Scotland, and Wales saying they do not go far enough.

Labour said ministers were ‘behind the curve’ in protecting the country’s borders.

But making the case for the government in a Commons statement, Ms Patel said: ‘It is clear that there are still too many people coming in and out of our country each day.

‘And today I am announcing further action to strengthen the health measures we already have at the border, but to reduce passenger flow so that only a small number of people for whom it is absolutely essential to travel are doing so and therefore reducing the risk to our world-leading vaccine programme.’

Under the push to clamp down on travel, airlines are expected to be fined if they fail to enforce non-exemptions properly after influencers were accused of ‘taking the p***’ by jetting out to Dubai, claiming their Instagram updates constituted work.

‘Even at St Pancras people have been turning up with their skis,’ Ms Patel said.

‘We see plenty of influencers on social media showing off about which parts of the world they are in…

‘Going on holiday is not a valid reason to travel.’

The limited Australian-style quarantine scheme follows concerns about new Covid variants entering Britain – but ignores a plea from Ms Patel and Health Secretary Matt Hancock to apply the diktat to all arrivals. 

Working hard: James Lock and his girlfriend Yazmin Oukhellou posed for a recent snap while lapping up the sunshine in Dubai

Which influencers have defended trips abroad? 

Kady McDermott

Former Love Island contestant has hit back at a number of followers who criticised her decision to continue posting sun-soaked snaps from the Maldives

Former Love Island contestant has hit back at a number of followers who criticised her decision to continue posting sun-soaked snaps from the Maldives, while Britain is in lockdown

On one of pictures, showing her stepping out of a crystal blue sea, a follower remarked: ‘Breaking the rules again – don’t see this as a business trip!’

But Kady hit back: ‘Oh so because you don’t see it as a business trip it means it isn’t? Oh ok lol.’

Replying to another follower on a different picture, she said: ‘This is how I pay my bills!’  

Gabby Allen

Former Love Island contestant Gabby Allen moved out to Dubai on December 7

Former Love Island contestant Gabby Allen moved out to Dubai on December 7.

She too faced criticism but, unlike many other influencers, she quickly set out her argument for the move – saying that her boyfriend, Brandon Myers, had a business.

In a post on Instagram, she said: ‘Hey guys, just to let you know, we made the decision to fly out to Dubai as my boyfriend’s business is based here & luckily allows us to travel,’ she wrote.

‘We were both fit to travel with negative PCR tests [for COVID-19]. I wanted to come on here and acknowledge this to my followers as it was a difficult decision for me.

‘I really hope you can understand that it was an opportunity I had to take.’

Amber Gill

Perhaps one of the more bizarre defences came from former Love Island star Amber Gill

Perhaps one of the more bizarre defences came from former Love Island star Amber Gill.

The former reality show winner jetted off to Dubai in December following news that London and much of the south East would be affected by the new rules.

But she said she ‘no idea’ what she was doing and claimed she was confused by the Tier 4 rules.  

In a staggering Instagram post, she wrote: ‘Just want to put it out there that I had no idea Tier 4 was a thing.

‘The flight here was booked way before. I thought the only changes were being made on the 16th meaning I was still allowed to travel for work.’

Laura Anderson

Laura Anderson has insisted that flying to Dubai was ‘a coping mechanism’ during the COVID-19 pandemic

Laura Anderson has insisted that flying to Dubai was ‘a coping mechanism’ during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Love Island star, 31, said she ‘felt guilty the whole time’ she was away after claiming she’d flown to the UAE for a ‘business trip’ following backlash towards influencers bending travel restrictions to fly abroad. 

During an Instagram Q and A, after being asked whether she felt guilty about being in Dubai, she said: ‘I felt guilty the whole time. I don’t think anyone realised how bad the strain would get, and how quickly. So hearing people upset, I felt horrific.’ 

Holly Hagan

Geordie Shore’s Holly Hagan – who has remained in the UK – weighed in on the widely-discussed issue of reality stars jetting to Dubai amid the coronavirus pandemic

Geordie Shore’s Holly Hagan – who has remained in the UK – weighed in on the widely-discussed issue of reality stars jetting to Dubai amid the coronavirus pandemic.

During an Instagram Q&A on Tuesday evening, the TV personality, 28, was quizzed over her thoughts on the vast amount of celebrities, including her MTV co-stars and Love Islanders, heading to Dubai amid restrictions and rules.

She was quick to defend her peers and pals, and while she admitted it is ‘frustrating’ for social media users to see their lavish antics, she personally would prefer ‘people to be happy in Dubai than suffering at home’.

Holly remained at home during the pandemic, while many of her pals – including Chloe Ferry and Sophie Kasaei – upped and left to Dubai.

Sheridan Mordew

The fitness influencer sparked a backlash earlier this week when she defended her decision to leave the UK for Dubai on This Morning.

The 24-year-old, from Sunderland, who has a following of around 11,000 on Instagram, arrived in Dubai on January 2, just a few days before the third national lockdown.

Since then, the social media star, who runs ‘Shape Up With Sher,’ has been sharing glamorous, sunshine-filled content with her Instagram followers as she enjoys relaxed restrictions in the United Arab Emirates. 

The 24-year-old, from Sunderland, who has a following of around 11,000 on Instagram, arrived in Dubai on January 2, just a few days before the third national lockdown

But as she tried to justify her travels to Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby on This Morning, the influencer failed to win over viewers.

They called her ‘selfish’ and ‘disgraceful’ for trying to imply her work – sharing sun-soaked selfies and outdoor fitness classes – was essential.

‘The reason I came to Dubai was purely for business,’ Sheridan started during a video call with the This Morning duo.

A cynical Phil told Sheridan: ‘A lot of the fitness stuff, this could be in your garage in Bolton, you don’t have to be in Dubai to do that.’

The influencer claimed she had travelled to the United Arab Emirates because she was struggling with her mental health, adding that ‘clients depend on me to bring them happiness’.

She said her thought process was: ‘The only way I’m gonna get out of this is to find an opportunity to get out of here on a plane to Dubai.

She said the travel was ‘the opportunity to get good content,’ and stressed she has no children and no ties

‘I’m not going to get content at home watching Netflix,’ she said. ‘It is all about the whole aspect of content, getting clients, all that kind of stuff.’

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