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Covid Travel: Green List Countries Updated & More Countries Join Red List!

Canada & Denmark are among the seven new green list countries in the latest changes to Covid restrictions.

Thailand & Montenegro are both being added to the UK’s red list – meaning they are considered to be among the highest-risk destinations.

The changes will come into effect at 04:00 BST on Monday.

Here are the newly added green list countries:

  • Finland
  • The Azores
  • Switzerland
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Canada 
  • Denmark 

However, while Canada sits among the seven green list countries, it currently has a ban on British nationals entering the country.

Travellers coming from green list countries do not have to quarantine when they come back to the UK, regardless of whether or not they have had two doses of the vaccine.

They will still have to be tested before leaving the UK and fill in a passenger location form upon their return.

Only UK or Irish nationals or UK residents are allowed entry to the UK if they have been to any of the red list countries. Upon arrival, they will have to pay to self-isolate in a government-approved quarantine hotel.

According to the Department for Transport, the changes being made to the red list is a reflection of “the increased case rates in these countries and the higher risk that travel from these countries poses to UK public health”.

Travel lists are currently updated every three weeks. Most countries are on the amber list – if you have been to one of these destinations, you need not quarantine unless you are not fully vaccinated. However, they will have to have to be tested before leaving and when they get back. 

Those who have not had both doses of the vaccine will have to isolate at home for 10 days and go through Covid tests as well.

Airlines UK, which represents UK-registered carriers, said the “small number of green destinations” was making international travel “more expensive, burdensome and uncertain compared to other countries”.

A spokesman said: “Too many families are having to look over their shoulders for rule changes and pay through the nose for tests, with no sign from the government that this will change.”

“As has already happened across Europe, it’s time for a more proportionate system where tests are dropped for the fully-vaccinated and from destinations where Covid risks are low, with tougher measures targeted at a small number of high-risk countries.”

The chairman & CEO of British Airways, Sean Doyle, also reacted to the recent travel changes, saying “the UK’s economic recovery remains far behind our more pragmatic European neighbours”. He added: “We also need to urgently end the uncertainty caused by the constant threat of changes to countries’ traffic light status.”

“Our green list is much smaller than that of the US and EU, despite no new variants being transported into the UK.”

Charlie Cornish, chief executive of Manchester Airports Group, which operates Manchester, London Stansted and East Midlands airports, expressed how the changes to the UK traffic light system will make “little difference” to the restoration of the travel industry & called on the government to “overhaul” it.

He said unless the government removed the need for fully-vaccinated people to take tests, it would “continue to squander the advantage our world-leading vaccination programme was supposed to deliver”.

Shadow transport secretary Jim McMahon weighed in, saying, “any loosening of restrictions carries with it risks, particularly from variants that could undermine the progress we have made on vaccines”.

What are your thoughts on the updated list of the green list countries? Do you see yourself going on holiday in the near future? Sound off in the comments & let us know!

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