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DEPARTURES BOARD

Everywhere UK holidaymakers can travel to when lockdown is over

When travel restrictions ease, here’s our list of destinations to visit

Friday 27 November 2020 11:25 GMT
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The Maldives are now on the UK government’s ‘safe’ list
The Maldives are now on the UK government’s ‘safe’ list (Getty Images)

“Turbulent” is probably the word that best sums up the collective experience of the travel industry in 2020.

After the coronavirus pandemic shut down tourism worldwide, countries tentatively began opening up to visitors again, the UK included. 

The government introduced a blanket quarantine for arrivals, but followed this up with the concept of travel corridors – destinations where travellers were exempt from two weeks of mandatory self-isolation on return.

Meanwhile, the Foreign Office (FCDO) issued its own list of countries that it deemed “low risk”, and therefore were exempt from its advisory against all non-essential international travel.

The lists have changed considerably since they were first published in July, and continue to be updated on a weekly basis by Transport Secretary Grant Shapps.  

For now, all international holidays are banned for residents of England and Wales. But when restrictions ease and leisure travel is possible again, here are the destinations you could feasibly visit.

The below countries are all on the Department for Transport’s list of travel corridors, meaning travellers need not quarantine when they arrive back into the UK, as well as the FCDO’s safe list. They benefit from either a direct flight or a stopover in a destination that doesn’t require quarantine on return. Some may require testing in advance or on arrival, while a small number of days of self-isolation may also be necessary until a visitor receives a second negative test result for Covid-19. This list will be updated regularly.    

Antigua and Barbuda

Entry requirements

Visitors must complete a Health Declaration Form and will be subject to a health screening upon arrival into the country (including temperature and travel history checks, plus a possible second Covid-19 test).

Covid test?

All passengers aged 12 years and older must provide evidence of a negative Covid-19 RT-PCR test taken no more than seven days before arrival.

Quarantine?

No – as long as travellers have pre-booked hotel accommodation from the Government of Antigua and Barbuda’s Approved List, they will normally be permitted to travel to their accommodation and freely move around the country providing they adhere to local social distancing measures.  

The Azores and Madeira

Entry requirements

To enter these two autonomous Portuguese territories, travellers must complete a passenger questionnaire and submit to a health screening on entry. The Madeira one must be done 12 to 48 hours before departure but the Azores version can be completed any time before travel.

Covid test?

Both ask visitors to take a Covid-19 test 72 hours before travel and upload their test result. If you fail to do this, you can take a test at the airport on arrival.

Quarantine?

Only if you take a test on arrival instead of beforehand, in which case you must self-isolate until you receive a negative result.

Testing at Heathrow: The way forward for travellers

Bahrain

Entry requirements

Visas on arrival have been reintroduced for 68 nationalities, including the UK. Visitors are required to download the “BeAware” app in advance.

Covid test?

All arrivals into Bahrain will be required to undergo and pay for the enhanced arrivals testing procedure for Covid-19. The test on arrival costs 30 Bahraini Dinar (£60) and visitors staying for longer periods must pay the same again to get a second test after 10 days.

Quarantine?

All arrivals into Bahrain will be required to self-isolate until they receive their test results.

Bermuda

Entry requirements

All visitors from a country classified by the WHO as having community transmission of Covid-19 (including the UK) will need to apply for Travel Authorisation.

Covid test?

Travellers aged 10 and over are required to have a pre-departure test. Those without a negative pre-departure test will not be able to obtain Travel Authorisation. All travellers will undergo a second PCR Covid-19 test on arrival at the Bermuda L.F. Wade International Airport.

Quarantine?

Until the test on arrival result comes back negative, yes. “It’s important that travellers adhere to the Covid-19 guidance and quarantine in their accommodation until airport tests results are ready,” says the FCDO.

The Canary Islands

Entry requirements

It is mandatory for all passengers travelling to the Canary Islands to download and activate the Radar COVID notification app throughout their stay on the islands, and for 15 days after their return home.

Covid test?

From 23 November, you will have to show a Covid-19 PCR test regardless of where you’re staying.

Quarantine?

On arrival, travellers entering Spain from the UK will not be required to self-isolate.

Gibraltar

Entry requirements

It is a legal requirement to complete a passenger locator form before your arrival in Gibraltar. You will only be able to complete this form once you have checked in for your flight and have been allocated your seat number.

Covid test?

Not unless you’ve been to a “relevant area” at any point in the 14 days prior to your visit (a “relevant area” is anywhere barring the EU, UK, Jersey, Guernsey, Isle of Man, Andorra, Monaco, San Marino, the Vatican, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland, Australia, Canada, Georgia, Japan, New Zealand, Rwanda, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia, Uruguay, and China).

Quarantine?

Again, not unless you’ve been to a ‘relevant area’ within the last two weeks.  

Corfu, Crete, Kos, Rhodes, Zakynthos

Entry requirements

You must complete an online Passenger Locator Form (PLF) at least 24 hours before your arrival.

Covid test?

You must provide evidence of a negative result from a PCR test for Covid-19 that has been conducted within the 72 hour period before your arrival time in Greece. Any passenger entering Greece may also be asked to undergo a test on arrival – you are more likely to be asked if you have arrived from a country outside of the EU (including the UK).

Quarantine?

Only if you’re asked to take a test on arrival – you must self-isolate until you receive a negative result. If your test result is positive, the Greek authorities are likely to ask you to quarantine for 14 days, or until the date of your departure from Greece. On return, if you travel via the Greek mainland or other islands, you will need to quarantine for 14 days.

Maldives

Entry requirements

All travellers must fill in a Traveller Health Declaration form 24 hours before departure to the Maldives. They are also required to complete an Immigration Arrival Card when arriving in the Maldives. Temperature checks and screening procedures will be in place on arrival.

Covid test?

All tourists must present a negative PCR test for Covid-19 on arrival. The test and negative PCR certificate must be issued no more than 96 hours prior to departure.

Quarantine?

There are no plans to quarantine tourists on arrival unless they display symptoms of coronavirus.

St Kitts and Nevis

Entry requirements

Before arrival, travellers from the UK must complete the entry form on the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis website and download the SKN Covid-19 contact tracing mobile app, which is to be used for the first 14 days of travel.

Covid test?

Visitors must submit a negative PCR test completed within 72 hours of travel from an accredited laboratory. They must also take a test 72 hours prior to departure if they’re staying in St Kitts for seven nights or less; if staying longer, they must take a second test on day seven of their stay.

Quarantine?

Not strictly speaking. For the first week, visitors are free to move about the hotel property, interact with other guests and partake in hotel activities. If they’re staying for longer and their second test comes back negative, from day eight to 14 travellers are allowed, through the hotel’s tour desk, to book select excursions and access select destination sites.

St Lucia

Entry requirements

All travellers must complete a Pre-Arrival registration form prior to arrival to St Lucia. Reservations for a Covid-19 certified property must be confirmed before travel.

Covid test?

All travellers must provide certified proof of a negative PCR Covid-19 test taken seven days or less before travel to St Lucia.

Quarantine?

Yes and no. While all international visitors must stay at a Covid-certified property for the duration of their visit, guests are allowed to stay at two different hotels during their holiday, and are permitted to leave their accommodation to participate in various certified tours and excursions.

First all-pre-tested flight from New York arrives at Heathrow

Turks and Caicos Islands 

Entry requirements

Anyone arriving to the Turks and Caicos Islands is required to obtain pre-travel authorisation via the Turks and Caicos Islands Assured Portal. This requires evidence of a negative Covid-19 test from a reputable facility taken less than five days prior to arrival, proof of health/travel insurance with coronavirus cover and a completed health screening questionnaire.  

Covid test?

Yes – see above.

Quarantine?

There is no mandatory quarantine for visitors.

United Arab Emirates  

Entry requirements

International health insurance, a completed Health Declaration Form and a Quarantine Form are mandatory for tourists visiting Dubai. Travellers must also register their details on the Covid-19 DXB App. (The other Emirates have their own requirements; tourist visas are not currently being issued by the Abu Dhabi authorities at Abu Dhabi airport.)

Covid test?

Travellers must provide a negative PCR test result taken no more than 96 hours before travel, or have the option of taking a PCR test on arrival at Dubai airport.

Quarantine?

Visitors to Dubai need not quarantine unless they test positive for coronavirus at the airport.

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