Only 12 countries make a green list for holidays
Yesterday ONLY 12 countries made the long-awaited green list for the holidays, along with the Costa del Sol but the Falkland Islands.
South Georgia and the Sandwich Islands, British territories close to the South Pole and with temperatures well below zero, also made the difference.
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But in good news for sun-hungry vacationers, those heading to Portugal from May 17 will not have to self-quarantine.
Israel, Gibraltar and Iceland are also green destinations as Minister Grant Shapps unveiled England’s new traffic light system yesterday.
And he offered hope that France, Spain and Greece, currently rated orange, could all switch to green soon, with revisions every three weeks.
The government continues to warn against travel to popular hotspots and anyone who is likely to be there will have to take two PCR tests within a ten-day quarantine upon their return.
Speaking from Downing Street, the Transport Secretary said our successful deployment meant we had built a ‘fortress against Covid’.
But he warned against the passage of foreign virus variants.
Mr Shapps added: “As the rest of the world is able to catch up with our successful vaccination program and get vaccinated, I expect we will see a situation where more countries will open up.”
He said the travel list was not created to think about where people “want to lie on beaches” and insisted they would not “twist the science” for reasons. vacation.
The system sculpts the globe based on vaccine deployments, infection rates, new emerging variants, and access to reliable scientific data and genomic sequencing.
Green List countries, including Australia and New Zealand, currently ban Britons from entering.
But Portugal and Israel have announced they will open to vaccinated vacationers later this month.
Mr Shapps also confirmed that when travel is cleared, the NHS app will carry the details of the jab to be used as a vaccination passport.
A written letter can also be used for people without a smartphone
Airlines have said the planes are ready to carry pale tourists from England to the sunshine of the Algarve and Tel Aviv after months of lockdown.
But the cost of a flight to Portugal has already skyrocketed with the average fare up 15% and bookings over 100%.
The travel industry said it was disappointed not to see more destinations making the cut.
Fancy a dip? It is a soft -10C
By Daniel Hammond
BRITS can go on vacation to South Georgia after being added to the Green List – but it will take three days and cost £ 5,000 to get there.
Tourists wishing to travel to one of the most remote places in the world should take an RAF flight to the Falkland Islands and then charter a boat for the last 900 miles.
And no need to bring a swimsuit because holidaymakers can expect an average temperature of -10 ° C in July.
It has a population of 30 scientists and a beach, which is shared by a colony of half a million king penguins.
But travelers can visit the tomb of explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton.
And in Benidorm, the mayor of the resort criticized Spain’s amber status, saying the Costa Blanca had better Covid numbers than Portugal.
Toni Perez wants a meeting with the British Ambassador, as the British represent 40% of tourists.
Benidorm city hall officials pointed out that the region had only 43 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the past two weeks.
In a statement, officials said: “Benidorm has better data than Portugal.
“The evolution of vaccination is also proceeding at a good pace. For the mayor, this situation is incomprehensible.
British Airways chief Sean Doyle said: “We are happy that our customers are able to start traveling again and we have set up additional flights from London, Manchester, Newcastle and Edinburgh to Faro to help people get moving.
“What is clear is that with high immunization levels matched by other countries, we should see more destinations go ‘green’ before the end of June.”
Conservative MP Henry Smith, who chairs a parliamentary group on the future of aviation, added: “No one is arguing for the lifting of all restrictions, but it is disappointing that the number of countries on the green list remains extremely limited and that those vaccinated are. remain subject to restrictions when traveling to low-risk countries.
“Restarting international travel isn’t just about summer vacation, it’s about reuniting families and rebuilding our economy.”
As The Sun revealed last month, every passenger arriving in the UK will be required to take a test with the result entered in a passenger tracker form.
Each arrival will also have to pass a PCR test, booked in advance, at least two days later.
Tests typically cost around £ 120, although some on the official list cost around £ 45.
There will be no exemptions for fully vaccinated travelers.
Gloria Guevara, World Travel & Tourism Council, said: “Vacationers and business travelers will be disappointed with so few countries on the green list.
“We are also disappointed that travelers have to pay for expensive PCR tests, even when coming from countries that are on the green list.
“This will make vacations abroad totally unaffordable for many families.”
Border forces chief Paul Lincoln said more staff had been hired but warned of delays at airports.
Lib Dem MP Layla Moran, who chairs a caucus on the coronavirus, said: “It is incredibly short-sighted to give the green light to the holidays on the same day that concerns over the Indian variant were confirmed.
“We know that international travel and its variants pose the greatest risk to our hard-won progress against Covid-19.”
There is still a long way to go
By Lisa Minot, Travel Editor-in-Chief
The holidays are here – but don’t expect a return to the Costas anytime soon.
In Europe, only Portugal and its islands, Madeira and the Azores, as well as little Gibraltar, were on the green list.
And many of the 12 countries on the list, including Australia, New Zealand and Singapore, will not let the British in yet.
From May 17, when the borders reopen for Spain, Italy, France and Greece, a return quarantine and up to three PCR tests will be required.
We are on our way, but we still have a long way to go.
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