Quarantine restrictions will be placed on people traveling from Greece to Scotland, the Scottish government has announced.
They will need to self-isolate for 14 days if they arrive in Scotland after 4 a.m. on Thursday.
Ministers said they took the decision due to a “significant increase” in cases of introduction of Covid-19 into Scotland by people who had traveled to Greece.
It has been linked to travelers returning from the Greek Islands.
As a result, the country has been removed from the “travel corridor” exemption list for public health reasons.
The prevalence of Covid-19 in Greece is currently believed to remain below 20 per 100,000, but a number of cases of the virus in Scotland have been traced from Greece.
They include a passenger who traveled to Glasgow from Zakynthos on August 23.
Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf said, “We are in the midst of a global pandemic and the situation in many countries can change suddenly.
“Therefore, people should think very carefully before embarking on non-essential overseas travel.
“With Scotland’s relatively low infection rate, importing new cases from Greece poses a significant risk to public health. ”
Scotland’s Chief Medical Officer Dr Gregor Smith said: “There is a compelling public health risk surrounding the importation of the virus, especially given the number of imported cases linked to the Greek Islands.
“The flow of travel between Scotland and Greece, and the behavior we’ve seen from some of these travelers, means that for public health reasons there is a strong argument – backed by public health directors – to remove Greece from the exemption list. “
Which countries are on Scotland’s quarantine list?
People traveling to Scotland from the following countries are subject to quarantine restrictions:
- Czech republic
- The Netherlands
- Trinidad and Tobago
- Turks and Caicos Islands
Travelers arriving home in Wales from Zakynthos are also advised to self-isolate for 14 days.
Wales Health Minister Vaughan Gething said there were six clusters of cases, or 30 infections, linked to flights from the Greek island.
Meanwhile, ministers plan to reimpose quarantine measures for those arriving in the UK from Portugal as coronavirus cases increase, sources told the BBC.
The UK plans to impose quarantine on travelers when a country’s infection rate exceeds 20 cases per 100,000 people, over seven days.
But each of the four countries can add or remove countries from their own list.
Mike Tibbert, vice chairman of the Scottish Passenger Agents’ Association, said he was “extremely concerned” about the workload placed on its members by the changing quarantine rules.
“Greece’s withdrawal from this ongoing hokey-cokey of countries that are” in or out “means it is impossible for Scots to plan or rearrange a vacation they have already paid for. And just as impossible for our members to run a business, ”he said.