UK tourists heading for a mid-term holiday in Europe – or expecting visitors from overseas – will need to be aware of the new travel changes that are being introduced.
Anyone flying to Spain, Greece, Morocco and France could be affected by different rules, including the end of travel bans and changes to PCR tests, mirror reports.
More and more countries have scrapped the requirement for Covid tests for vaccinated people – while an EU rule has seen countries like France and Spain tighten the definition of what it means to be fully vaccinated.
This new definition means that you will need to have received a double shot within the last 270 days before travelling, otherwise you will need a booster shot to be considered fully vaccinated.
The UK is also changing its travel rules from tomorrow (Friday 11 February) from 4am.
This means that people arriving in the UK will not have to take a PCR test, but will only have to fill in a form before departure.
As for those who are unvaccinated or partially vaccinated, the current requirement to self-isolate for 10 days will be waived, as will the eighth-day Covid tests.
This means that unvaccinated arrivals will only have to take two tests; one before departure, one after arrival.
Below we look at the changes
Rules for traveling to France
Only fully vaccinated Britons can visit for a holiday without needing to self-quarantine, but you will need a negative Covid test result taken within 48 hours of departure. It should be noted that the country is set to drop Covid testing rules within days.
Unvaccinated travelers need an essential reason to visit.
There are also new recall requirements if you were vaccinated more than 270 days ago.
All passengers will also be required to sign a “declaration on honour” confirming that they do not have symptoms of coronavirus and that they have not been in contact with a confirmed case in the 14 days preceding their trip to France.
Rules for traveling to Spain
Fully vaccinated Britons can visit Spain for the holidays. This applies to anyone aged 12 or over – meaning unvaccinated children aged 12 to 17 will not be able to visit under the new rules.
The country also has new booster requirements, meaning if you completed your vaccination program more than nine months ago, you will need a booster to be considered fully vaccinated.
All UK travelers will also need to complete a pre-travel form and obtain a QR code to present at border control.
The rules also apply to Britons traveling to the Canary Islands and the Balearic Islands.
Rules for traveling to Portugal
Unvaccinated or partially vaccinated travelers aged 12 or over will need to have a negative Covid test to visit Portugal. This can be either a PCR test performed within 72 hours of departure or a lateral flow test performed within 24 hours of departure.
Fully vaccinated travelers are exempt from Covid testing requirements. All travelers must also complete an online Passenger Locator Form prior to departure.
If you completed your vaccination program more than nine months ago, you will need a booster shot to be considered fully vaccinated.
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Rules for traveling to Greece
Greece is open to vaccinated and unvaccinated Britons. Anyone over the age of 12 will be required to complete a Passenger Locator Form prior to departure.
If you are unvaccinated or partially vaccinated, you will need to show proof of a negative Covid test result. PCR testing can be done within 72 hours of arrival, or antigen testing within 48 hours of arrival.
Fully vaccinated travelers will be exempt from Covid testing requirements.
Rules for traveling to Morocco
Morocco has lifted the travel ban imposed on British travellers.
You will need to present proof of full Covid vaccination (i.e. your course is completed at least two weeks prior to travel), as well as proof of a negative PCR test result within 48 hours prior boarding.
Children under the age of six are exempt from the PCR test requirement prior to travel and children under the age of 18 are exempt from the requirement to present a pass for vaccines.
All passengers will also be required to sign a Passenger Health Form prior to arrival in Morocco – this must be printed and signed prior to your trip.
There are also lateral flow tests on arrival, as well as random PCR tests.