Latest UK government travel tips for France, Portugal, Spain, Italy, Egypt and Turkey

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Anyone looking to travel outside the UK knows that the latest travel advice is constantly changing.Last week, five Greek islands were added to the government’s quarantine exemption list, meaning arrivals to England from Lesbos, Santorini, Serifos, Tinos and Zakynthos – also known as Zante – no longer have to self-isolate for 14 days from 4 a.m. Saturday after a decrease in cases.

The advice is usually updated on a Thursday with an announcement from Transportation Secretary Grant Shapps – this could be a change in the list of government travel corridors or additions to the exemption list.

But what are the latest tips or some of our favorite destinations; France, Portugal, Spain, Italy, Egypt and Turkey?

All the information below was correct on Gov.uk as of October 14.

France



France was removed from the list of “travel corridors” on August 15

The Office of Foreign Affairs, Commonwealth and Development (FCDO) advises against all travel, except essential, in France (including Corsica). This is based on the current risk assessment for Covid-19.

There has been a sharp increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in France in recent weeks, with a significant number of French departments now at “heightened vulnerability”. In a number of areas, the French government has taken further action accordingly. Consult local councils for more information.

FCDO is not advising those already traveling to France to leave at this time. You should follow the advice of local authorities on the best way to protect yourself and others, including the measures they put in place to control the virus. Contact your tour operator if you have any questions about your return trip.

If you are returning to the UK from France on or after August 15, you will need to self-isolate on your return, unless you are exempt.

Travel to France is subject to entry restrictions

  • Arrivals by sea and air will need to complete a self-certifying “sworn statement” form that they do not suffer from symptoms associated with the coronavirus and have not been in contact with confirmed cases during the previous fifteen days.
  • While there are no restrictions on travel from the UK and most European countries, travel from most non-European countries is subject to entry restrictions.

Portugal

FCDO advises against all but essential trips to mainland Portugal. This is based on the current risk assessment for Covid-19.

The autonomous regions of Madeira and the Azores, are exempt from FCDO advice against all non-essential international travel. This is based on the current assessment of the risks of covid.

If you are traveling to the UK from mainland Portugal, you may need to isolate yourself on your return.

The Autonomous Regions of Madeira and the Azores are on the list of countries and territories where self-isolation is not required upon return to the UK.

Travel to Portugal is subject to entry restrictions

  • Upon arrival in mainland Portugal, you will undergo a health examination
  • If you are traveling to Madeira, Porto Santo or the Azores, you must take a covid test before your trip or upon arrival
  • If you get a positive test on arrival, you will need to stay in detention until you get a negative test result

Spain

FCDO advises against all non-essential travel to Spain, including the Balearic and Canary Islands, based on the current risk assessment for Covid-19 in the country.

This advice is based on evidence of increasing cases of covid in Spain.

FCDO does not advise those already traveling to Spain to leave at this time. Travelers should follow the advice of local authorities on how to best protect themselves and others, including the measures they introduce to control the virus.

If you are returning from Spain you will need to self-isolate when you return to the UK, but FCDO does not advise you to cut your visit short.

Travel is subject to entry restrictions:

Upon arrival, travelers entering Spain from the UK will not be required to self-isolate. However, you will be subject to the following three requirements:

  • Provide the Spanish Ministry of Health with the mandatory contact details and any history of exposure to covid 48 hours before travel
  • Temperature control
  • Take a visual health assessment

Italy

As of July 4, Italy is exempt from the FCDO advice against all non-essential international travel. This is based on the current risk assessment for Covid-19.

However, it should be noted that this country has reported a substantial increase in the number of cases. An increasing number of cases are being reported, especially on the island of Sardinia.

Travel to Italy is subject to entry restrictions

  • When you arrive in Italy from the UK, you must show proof that you have tested negative for COVID within 72 hours of your trip. Do not use the NHS testing service for a travel test in Italy. You should make arrangements to take a private test.
  • You can also get a free test when you arrive at some airports or at a test center in Italy soon after you arrive. If your test is positive in Italy, you will need to quarantine yourself. Your quarantine can last anywhere from 10 days to 3 weeks, so you should be prepared in case you test positive.
  • If you have stayed in or transited through a small number of the listed countries within the 14 days prior to entering Italy, you will also need to self-isolate for 14 days upon entering Italy. If you cannot do this for any reason, you may be refused entry to Italy.
  • You must download and complete a self-declaration from the Ministry of the Interior before traveling to Italy and inform the local authorities of your presence.

Egypt

FCDO’s advice against all but essential international travel continues to apply throughout Egypt.

Additionally, if you are already in Egypt, you should be aware of our pre-existing advice in the country unrelated to Covid-19:

FCDO continues to advise against travel for:

  • the governorate of North Sinai.

The FCDO continues to advise against all travel, except essential, for:

  • the governorate of South Sinai beyond the perimeter fence of Sharm el-Sheikh.
  • the area west of the Nile Valley and Nile Delta regions, excluding the coastal areas between the Nile Delta and Marsa Matruh.

Egyptian authorities have indicated that all arrivals to Egypt will be subject to sanitary measures:

  • Passengers will be required to complete a surveillance card with their personal data and will be required to provide valid health insurance policy confirmation to the airport authorities.
  • From September 1, all persons (including those with Egyptian nationality) arriving from abroad to any part of Egypt will be required to present a negative PCR test certificate upon arrival. Egyptian authorities have indicated that PCR tests should not be carried out more than 72 hours before flight departure.
  • Passengers arriving from London Heathrow only are allowed to have their PCR test performed no more than 96 hours before flight departure. Children under 6 are exempt. You should check with your airline to confirm PCR test turnaround times and what proof of testing must be presented prior to your travel.

turkey

FCDO advises against all non-essential travel to Turkey, based on the current risk assessment for Covid-19 in the country.

FCDO does not advise those already traveling to Turkey to leave at this time. Travelers should follow the advice of local authorities on how to best protect themselves and others, including the measures they introduce to control the virus. You should contact your tour operator or airline if you have any questions about your return trip.

If you return to the UK from Turkey on October 3 or after 4 a.m., you will need to self-isolate on your return – unless you are exempt.

Travel to Turkey is subject to entry restrictions:

  • All arrivals to Turkey will undergo a medical assessment for symptoms of the coronavirus, including temperature checks
  • If you have symptoms on arrival, you will need to undergo a PCR test coronavirus.

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