Boris Johnson has announced new national restrictions before MPs in the House of Commons as the Covid-19 alert level moves back up to Level Four. He will follow this up with a televised address tonight at 8pm.
Key changes to the rules include a move to table-service only and a 10pm curfew for hospitality venues including restaurants and bars, a return to working from home where possible, a extension of the requirement to wear face coverings, and a change in policy that means Covid-secure guidelines will become legal obligations for retail, leisure and tourism.
For now, he has stopped short of the two-week “circuit break” and it seems the “rule of six” will remain in place for now, meaning you can still go on holiday with another household as long as your group size is no larger than six in England. In Wales, children under the age of 11 are not included in this number, and in Scotland, it does not apply to children under the age of 12.
There has been no information released that would suggest that hotels, self-catering accommodation or attractions in the UK would be forced to shut in the coming days, or that borders would need to be closed to international travel again.
That said, Mr Johnson says that the Government reserves the right to deploy “greater firepower, with significantly greater restrictions”, even while insisting he “fervently” wants to avoid this step.
Scroll for updates.
The biggest stories from today
Boris Johnson announces new national restrictions including a 10pm curfew for hospitality
Half of UK tourism companies ‘not confident’ of short-term survival
Inconsistent UK guidelines create increased operational challenges for travel industry
No changes have been made to FCDO advice today despite new rules
Airport testing could tackle Covid transmission rates, say Government advisers
Eurostar’s ski train will not run this winter
Follow along tomorrow for all the latest updates.
German airline Lufthansa to make more staff cuts
Lufthansa has announced that it will have to make more staff cuts and pull more jets out of service than originally planned because the outlook for air travel is worse than the company first predicted, according to a report by AP.
The company was already planning on getting rid of 22,000 full-time positions, and it is unclear how many more will now be lost. Its eight remaining Airbus A380 jets will also be put in long-term storage, along with 10 four-engine A340-600 aircraft.
Circuit breaker lockdown ‘actively under review’, says Sturgeon
Nicola Sturgeon is “actively keeping the idea of a circuit break under review”, she has told the Scottish Parliament.
The First Minister said people in Scotland should think of the October half-term – during which a prospective mini-lockdown could take place – as an chance to reduce social interaction, especially indoors. She urged people not to book overseas travel during that time.
The First Minister also announced a series of new rules today, much of which is in line with what Boris Johnson announced for England.
One key difference is that from Friday households mixing is banned in Scotland. That said, she confirmed, “Rules for meeting other people in public indoor spaces that are subject to strict guidance remain the same.” Children under 12 will be exempted from the rule of six, and children under 18 will be exempt from the two-household limit outdoors.
‘Does the virus only come out after 10pm?’
The hospitality industry has begun to react to the news that all restaurants, pubs and bars must shut up shop by 10pm each night.
Stuart Proctor, manager of The Stafford Collection, which includes London’s grand old Stafford hotel and Sicilian restaurant Norma, is “frustrated, angry and concerned” about the new rules. First, there are the practical concerns of cancelling bookings and slicing revenue.
He says: “Within the Stafford Collection, 19 per cent of all reservations are made for dinner post 9pm, not including walk-ins and hotel guests in the bar. This is a huge chunk of business which will now disappear for no good reason – does the virus only come out post 10pm?”
It’s a similar story outside of the capital. Jack Stein, Chef Director Rick Stein Group, says: “As of today, we are going to have to contact over 900 customers who have reservations in our pub and restaurants to rearrange their bookings which means disappointment for some, many cancellations and more lost revenue for us after months of closure.”
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps reminds public of new rules surrounding taxis
We know most people are wearing face coverings in taxis, but to provide consistency across public transport & further boost safety, we’re making face coverings mandatory for passengers in taxis or private hire vehicles. Usual exemptions, but please, don’t forget your covering.
— Rt Hon Grant Shapps MP (@grantshapps) September 22, 2020
Ace Hotel London and other US brands shut their hotels in the capital
“Hotel operations temporarily suspended.” So reads the flyers that have been pinned up in the shuttered windows of the Ace Hotel London Shoreditch since it closed its doors in March when the UK went into lockdown. Last week, the hotel group confirmed on Instagram that the building will not reopen as an Ace.
“We’re heartbroken to announce that our longtime home on [the] High Street will no longer continue as Ace Hotel London Shoreditch.
“As our first hotel outside the US, it was built as an open satellite for the extraordinary energy ignited by the city itself. We fell in love with that energy, and we’re excited to build a new home in London in the hopeful, renewed future.
It ends: “London, you’re a dream. We’re celebrating every incandescent second and we can’t wait to open our doors in your city again. We’ll see you soon.” The company will still operate its other hotels across the US and Japan.
Rule of six takes its toll on self-catering bookings and more
Last week’s announcement of the rule of six, which rendered many UK staycations illegal, has taken its toll on large self-catering property bookings. But other travel companies, too, are feeling the pinch: “Clients with families who have trips booked have already begun to look at cancelling,” says Duncan Greenfield-Turk, managing director of UK tour operator Luxury London Guy.
“It has been a huge blow to consumer confidence. There is concern amongst clients for the second lockdown and what will or won’t be possible – and whether they might be penalised if they’re forced to cancel at short notice.
“This, in turn, will of course impact the business financially – but we are positioned well to weather the storm a little longer.”
Eurostar’s ski train will not run this winter
Eurostar has confirmed the popular ski train to the Alps will not run this winter, despite pressure from the industry to have it reinstated.
The train operator announced plans to scrap the service, which has been running for 23 years, back in July, blaming “coronavirus and a challenging travel market.” Since, a petition calling to revoke the decision, supported by key figures in the ski world, has received over 10,500 signatures.
“The cancellation of the ski train is a huge blow for everyone who cares about making ski holidays sustainable,” said four-time Winter Olympian Chemmy Alcott.
To drum up support for the #SaveTheSkiTrain campaign a new video has been launched today. A spokesperson for Eurostar said: “At this stage we have only confirmed the cancellation of the ski train for the ski season of 2020/2021 and I can assure you we will review this again next year.”
Watch the video below.
Inconsistent UK guidelines create increased operational challenges for travel industry
Ffestiniog Travel’s General Manager Maria Cook, says UK tourism operators offering touring-style staycations are further challenged by the different COVID guidelines and regulations between England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
She adds, “Many tour operators have pivoted in the crisis to introduce new UK-based holidays or expanded their domestic travel portfolio. We have also focused more of our marketing activity and spend on inspiring British holiday-makers to explore on home soil, but this is becoming more difficult by the day.”
But the fact that UK nations are clearly divided on how to manage to crisis, means for Maria’s business and others there has been further disruption and obstacles.
She explains, “As a niche tour operation we have re-structured our business switching the focus to domestic travel. This should have been a lifeline, but as our touring holidays include various elements of transport, accommodation and excursions there is no one set of rules to help us devise even a short-break small group touring programme. We are constantly checking rules and updates and no sooner have we devised a product, the guidelines change. It makes it almost impossible to plan for the business.”
British Airways’ Flying with Confidence course goes digital
British Airways is bringing its Flying with Confidence course online this October. It will be the first time the course will run digitally, and will now include reassurance on Covid-19 safety measures.
More than 50,000 people have taken part in the Flying with Confidence course since it began more than 35 years ago. The course, which has typically only been run in a classroom format followed by a short flight the following day, is now being offered as a live interactive webinar, to give attendees every detail from how an aircraft flies, to why turbulence is uncomfortable but not dangerous, to simple breathing techniques to use to manage anxiety.
British Airways Captain Steve Allright, who runs the course, said:
We are delighted to offer this popular course as a live, interactive webinar, to give more people than ever the chance to sign up and overcome their fear of flying from home, wherever they are in the world. Safety is at the heart of everything we do at British Airways. There will inevitably be some further worries and questions around the pandemic, so it’s more important than ever that we share with attendees not just the technical aspects of flying, but also the range of safety precautions we are taking, to give them the peace of mind and ensure they have a safe and enjoyable flying experience next time they fly with us.
A first look at Dawn Ward’s Warford Hall spa hotel, where “service will match a super yacht”
There are many strings to Dawn Ward’s bow. Most people will recognise her as the fiery matriarch from ITVBe’s Real Housewives of Cheshire, but her pursuits extend well beyond the follies of reality television with a business portfolio that has included a high-end property development firm, an interior design company, and a non-surgical clinic (the latter two of which she still runs).
For her latest venture, Ward is to open a luxury spa hotel in her famous home, Warford Hall. The impressive £14.5 million pile in Alderley Edge, designed by W. Roberts and dating back to 1867, is regularly featured on the show. Dawn and her husband, ex-Premier League footballer Ashley Ward, developed the 12-acre property into a family pad 13 years ago after it had previously been used for offices.
Charlotte Johnstone has the full story.
Princess Cruises announces sales of two more ships
Princess Cruises has announced the sale of two more ships as part of a plan by parent company Carnival Corporation, the world’s largest cruise operator, to “accelerate the removal of less efficient ships from its fleet.”
Sun Princess and Sea Princess, which can both carry over 2,000 passengers, have been purchased by undisclosed buyers.
Princess Cruises president Jan Swartz said: “Both ships defined the premium cruise experience with Australians and New Zealanders spending close to 14 million nights aboard these ships. While it is never easy to say goodbye to any ship in our fleet, this will allow us to deploy newer ships enhancing our offerings for Australia cruisers and focus on bringing into service exciting newbuilds like the upcoming delivery of Enchanted Princess.”
In July, Telegraph Travel reported that Carnival would be shedding at least 13 vessels across its cruise brands in 2020 – an unprecedented fall in capacity of almost nine per cent.
Pubs closing at 10 ‘will put thousands more jobs at risk’
From Thursday 24 September, all hospitality venues will be forced to close at 10pm in an effort to curb a second wave of coronavirus infections in England, writes Morgan Lawrence.
The hospitality sector has been restricted to table service only, outlawing buying and collecting drinks at the bar, while the recent ‘rule of six’ measures, in which pubs and restaurants will only be able to take bookings of up to six people, will remain in place.
More than 175 publicans and bar owners have joined in unison to protest the curfew. In an open letter to the Prime Minister, the sector predicts that such strict measures will be disastrous for an industry “already on its knees.”
Damien Devine of the Old Red Lion in Angel, London, is devastated by the news. “It’s a punch in the stomach from a business perspective”, he says.
“Midweeks are dead so the curfew won’t affect us Monday to Thursday, but I dread to think about weekends. Last weekend, for example, I did 40 per cent of my daily take between 10pm and 1am on Saturday night. Where does that leave me now?”
My wife and I took a ‘last hurrah’ holiday before our baby’s birth
Hugh Morris and his wife, Portia, chose the Lake District for their babymoon.
France Covid second wave leaves hospitals at ‘tipping point’
The head of France’s biggest A&E union has warned that its hospitals have reached a “tipping point” in the fight against Covid-19 and the second wave “is here”, Henry Samuel reports.
The comments from François Braun, president of France’s Samu-Urgences union mirror those of UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock, who on Sunday warned that Britain faced national lockdown unless people respected distancing rules.
The Gallic alarm call came after France registered 13,500 new daily infections on Saturday – a record since lockdown. The proportion of people testing positive rose slightly to 5.6 per cent. Last week also saw a rise in hospital deaths week on week for the first time since the end of confinement in May.
The national health body, Santé France, said there had been a “rise in all indicators” linked to the virus and a “probable underestimation” of the number of new cases due to test centres reaching saturation levels.
The authentic Greek island that the British haven’t discovered
It’s time to consider Syros, says Katie Mcgonagle.
“Sure, it’s got its beauty spots, from sparkling blue seas lapping at stone-built houses in Vaporia to the Venetian-built hilltop town of Ano Syros, full of narrow, meandering alleyways and sweeping island views. But the real beauty here lies in getting to know Syros itself, drinking coffee in a pavement café or listening to local rebetiko music as you tuck into mezze in a taverna – and that’s worth more than any sea view. “
Read the full feature here.
No changes have been made to FCDO advice in latest announcement
New coronavirus rules likely to continue for six months, admits Boris Johnson
“These measures will only work if people comply and there is nothing more frustrating for the law-abiding majority than the sight of a few brazenly defying the rules,” says Mr Johnson. “So these rules will be enforced by tighter penalties.”
“I want to speak to those who were shielding earlier in the pandemic and may be anxious.
“Our guidance continues to be that you do not need to shield except in local lockdown areas and we will keep this under constant review.”
This is not a second full lockdown, says Johnson
“Yesterday the UK’s covid alert level was raised from three to four, meaning that transmission is high or rising exponentially,” Mr Johnson says. “So this is the moment when we must act.
“If we can curb the number of daily infections and reduce the reproduction rate to one we can save lives, protect the NHS and the most vulnerable and shelter the economy from the far sterner measures that would inevitably come.”
He went on to list the new restrictions that will come into place shortly.
“First, we are once again asking office workers to work from home where they can do so,” says Mr Johnson.
“Second, from Thursday, all pubs, bars and restaurants must operate at table service only except for takeaways.
“Together with all hospitality venues they must close from 10pm. That means alas closing and not just calling for last orders, because simplicity is paramount.
“I’m sorry this will affect many businesses just getting back on their feet but we must act.
“Third, we will extend the requirement to wear face coverings to include staff in retail, customers in taxis, and customers in indoor hospitality settings, except when seated at tables.
“Fourth, in retail, leisure and tourism and other sectors our Covid-secure guidelines will become legal obligations.”
Airport testing could tackle Covid transmission rates, say Government advisers
Airport testing has been backed by Government scientific advisers, who say it could help reduce the spread of coronavirus.
Scientists with SAGE, the Government’s main scientific advisory body, said they were concerned at the “developing situation” around infections being imported into the UK by people arriving in the country.
It said that the introduction of testing at borders could provide “important surveillance data” and “potentially reduce onward transmission” of the disease by encouraging travellers and their contacts to quarantine.
The disclosure is a major boost for The Daily Telegraph’s Test4Travel campaign after criticism of ministers for dragging their feet over airport testing.
Beyond the ordinary: 10 UK holidays you probably haven’t thought of
With foreign holidays up in the air many of us are looking for the perfect UK escape.
The Duke of Sussex urges consumers to make sustainable choices in future travel plans
In the Skyscanner report released today, the Duke of Sussex, founder of Travalyst, has once again reminded the public that the travel industry and its consumers should see coronavirus as an opportunity to reset and make different choices in the future.
His statement read:
Recovery is vital for the security and prosperity of millions of communities, but recovery cannot just mean a return to the way things used to be. Travel can and should be a catalyst for good. It can be sustainable, ethical and even regenerative. It’s our collective responsibility to ensure that the industry that is reborn out of this pandemic is one that gives back more than it takes away.
Piero Sierra, Chief Product Officer at Skyscanner, added:
To ensure a resilient future for the travel industry, tourism must become more sustainable; our impact must become net positive and the places promoted to visitors must be protected and enhanced. We’re in a unique moment in time with an opportunity to address some of the systemic challenges caused by the sector’s acceleration in recent years.
Skyscanner releases a new report titled ‘The New World of Travel’
Bringing together extensive travel data and expert opinions from Skyscanner CEO Moshe Rafiah; Travalyst founder, The Duke of Sussex and other industry leaders, the Skycanner report released today explores emerging travel trends for 2021 and beyond.
In the UK, data indicates that currently female travellers are more inclined to book a holiday than male (55%) and those with children are more likely to book than those without (54%).
Extended escapes are also looking like a popular option for when we can travel more freely again, with 35% of those surveyed saying they would use their first holiday to take a long trip.
The flexible attitude adopted by travel providers during 2020 is one that has been wholly embraced in the UK, with 11% of holidaymakers departing less than a week after booking.
With some airline change fees currently waived or greatly reduced, and an increase in interest for flexible tickets on Skyscanner, jetting off at short notice will be a continuing trend well into 2021.
What’s more, during the month of August, total searches for international travel in 2020 and 2021 were only 10% less than the monthly average for 2019, suggesting there is still a large pent-up desire to travel when we can again.
Arena to launch new ship next year, as river cruise demand remains ‘strong’
The good news continues for the river cruise recovery even while ocean-going sailing remains in limbo after Arena River Cruises announced a date for the launch of its much-anticipated new flagship, MS Arena.
The four star ship, which was due to debut in April of this year before coronavirus scuppered the cruise line’s plans, will launch in April 2021.
Steve Goodenough, the managing director of Arena River Cruises, told The Telegraph: “Naturally we have been disappointed not to have been able to welcome passengers aboard MS Arena so far, as planned.
“I was lucky enough to travel to Amsterdam earlier in the summer and see the result of all the refurbishment and redecoration work – the ship is looking great and it’s such a shame not to have been able to share it with anyone.
Half of UK tourism companies ‘not confident’ of short-term survival
Today, as Britain braces for news of a heightened shutdown, travel and hospitality companies across the country have warned of the turmoil that such a move could impose.
Even in regions where staycations are booming, the outlook is dire: almost half of tourism-related businesses across the Lake District say they are not confident of survival over the next six months.
Responding to a survey by Cumbria Tourism, two thirds of businesses also warn of potential longer-term closures, while 23 per cent say they will be forced to make redundancies after the furlough scheme ends. By adhering to Covid-safe protocols, many tourism companies have been unable to open in a ‘viable’ way – and now, with yet tighter restrictions looming, the future looks more uncertain than ever.
Speaking exclusively to The Telegraph, hoteliers, restaurateurs and travel agents all over Britain have explained what a second lockdown could mean for them.
Tale of the Wrong PM: Boris Johnson was at Westminster Cathedral, Tony Blair in Perugia
Most people can tell the difference between Tony Blair and Boris Johnson. Alas, an official at a provincial Italian airport is not one of them.
Perugia Airport’s self-confessed “stupid mistake” led not only an international mystery, but to the revelation the Prime Minister was in fact baptising his son Wilfred in Westminster Cathedral on the day in question.
Exasperated by the claim that he had flown to the Italian city in the middle of the pandemic, a spokesman for Mr Johnson insisted that journalists could “confirm with the priest” that the Prime Minister was at the ceremony at the Catholic cathedral.
Finally, after a day or rumour and speculation, the airport’s president admitted to the Telegraph that it was in fact only Mr Blair who had travelled through on the weekend of September 12-13.
Nicola Sturgeon to announce new restrictions in Scotland
Nicola Sturgeon is expected to announce new measures at Holyrood to tackle the spread of coronavirus across Scotland.
The Scottish First Minister has said she will decide on further restrictions with her ministers following a Cobra meeting this morning.
It comes after four chief medical officers across the UK nations decided that the Covid-19 alert level should be raised to four.
For info: there will be no @scotgov briefing at 12.15pm today. Instead I will make a statement to @ScotParl at 2.20pm. And I will make a TV address – setting out the current position in Scotland – at 8.05pm on BBC.
— Nicola Sturgeon (@NicolaSturgeon) September 22, 2020
What this means for travel to, from and around Scotland is unclear so far. More updates as we have them.
Latest international developments
Yesterday, India reopened the Taj Mahal after six months, with the first visitors trickling into the famous monument as authorities reported 86,961 new infections across the country, with no signs of a peak yet.
Greece reported a daily record in new cases, with 453 Covid-19 infections reported on September 21 – the most since the pandemic began.
Tighter restrictions will be imposed in the French city of Lyon from today to counter a sharp increase in new cases and a surge in intensive care admissions, local authorities have announced.
The regional chief of Madrid has requested help from the Spanish army to fight a coronavirus surge in and around the Spanish capital.
New Zealand has lifted all coronavirus restrictions across the country, except in second-wave hotspot Auckland, as the number of new infections slowed to a trickle.
Hospitality industry hits back
Tommy Banks, chef-owner of Yorkshire Michelin-star restaurant with rooms The Black Swan at Oldstead, tweets about the repercussions of a 10pm curfew.
How’s everyone’s meetings going this morning? Guess the whole of hospitality is sat down trying to figure out what to do now with rules made by a government who appear to have no clue how hospitality actually operates. Positive vibes to everyone figuring it out ❤️ #staystrong
— Tommy Banks (@TommyBanks8) September 22, 2020
How to get travel insurance should you choose to ignore Foreign Office advice
Contrary to popular belief, you can visit a country to which the Foreign Office (FCDO) advises against travel without invalidating your insurance – you just need to contact one of the few providers willing to offer cover. What’s more, it shouldn’t cost much more than an ordinary policy.
Holidays to some parts of Europe and a few long-haul countries currently have FCDO approval. But that still leaves the majority of the planet (including, as of September 22, France, Portugal, Spain, Croatia and several Greek islands) off-limits.
Travelling against official government advice is not illegal, but most tour operators will not offer trips to destinations which the FCDO deems unsafe – in normal circumstances, that means places like Iraq and Afghanistan; in these strange times, it means just about everywhere – and most travel insurers won’t provide cover.
But some do.
‘New lockdowns in northern England are nonsensical and deeply unfair’
Telegraph Travel’s Lucy Aspden lives in Lancashire where semi-lockdown has already returned.
Us northerners are made of tough stuff but it’s hard to not take the new restrictions as a dig at the age-old North-South divide. In London’s boroughs, such as Redbridge, Southwark and Lambeth, cases are only marginally behind those in South Ribble, but no such restrictions have been brought in there. Can my Lancastrian friends and I not be trusted? What immunity do the residents of the capital have over us? I lived in London for over two years and never witnessed any immune-system superiority among my southern colleagues. A cough is a cough, whether it calls dinner, tea or lunch, dinner.
At the height of the pandemic fear mongering ruled the waves. Now it’s bewilderment, which unfortunately is only leading to dwindling trust in the rules. This will inevitably be followed by flouting, whether intentional or not, and then nobody is a winner.
Holiday quarantine: the situation in Italy
Caution is required, but as it stands British holidaymakers should not immediately be concerned about Italy being removed from the UK’s quarantine-free list.
Until recently, the Government used a threshold of 20 new cases per 100,000 people over a one-week period when considering which countries to ditch. Now the UK rate is on the rise, however, it appears to be exercising a little more leniency.
The case rate in Italy, as of September 22, is 17.2 per 100,000 – well below the UK rate of 38.7 and still below the old threshold.
Total lockdown or night-time curfew? How different countries have reacted to ‘second waves’
With new restrictions likely to be announced for Britain on Tuesday, a look at other national responses offers a few clues as to what they might be. For reference, the UK seven-day case rate is currently 37.9 per 100,000.
Case rate: 97.5 per 100,000
Despite 10,000 new cases a day, the French are embracing life – not imposing new rules. That’s the verdict of Anthony Peregrine, our expat expert.
Some local measures have been imposed, of course. Café and bar hours are widely restricted – to half-past midnight in the Pas-de-Calais, for example, 1am in Rennes and midnight across Corsica – while the southern city of Nice banned public gatherings of more than 10 people. However, a nationwide lockdown is not on the cards despite France’s case rate being double the UK’s.
Case rate: 157.8
The seven-day case rate in Spain (157.8 per 100,000) is more than three times that of the UK, and in certain parts of the country strict restrictions have been imposed. In Madrid, for example, local authorities have ordered a partial lockdown of some poorer areas, prompting protests over the weekend. Access to parks and public spaces, from today, is restricted, gatherings are limited to six people and commercial establishments have to close by 10pm.
One measure the Spanish government is particularly keen on is masks: they are mandatory whenever you leave your house, regardless of your ability to adhere to social distancing guidelines.
The only 12 countries you can visit without any restrictions
1. Denmark Entry to Denmark depends on whether you are arriving from an ‘open’ country or a ‘banned’ country. The UK is currently an ‘open’ country, but there have been suggestions that this could change if UK cases continue to rise.
3. Gibraltar Travellers must report to the authorities if they have been in a “relevant area” in the 14 days before their arrival in Gibraltar. Failure to do so constitutes an offence punishable with a fine of up to £1,000. A relevant area means a country, area or territory outside the European Union but does not include the United Kingdom, Jersey, Guernsey or the Isle of Man.
4. Greece (Partially open) Travellers returning to Scotland from the whole of Greece must self-isolate. For England and Northern Ireland, those returning from Lesvos, Tinos, Serifos, Mykonos, Crete, Santorini and Zakynthos must quarantine; for Wales, the exclusions are Mykonos, Zakynthos (Zante), Lesvos, Paros and Antiparos, Crete, Santorini, Serifos and Tinos. You must complete an online Passenger Locator Form (PLF) at least 24 hours before your arrival in Greece. Failure to do so in advance may result in your carrier not allowing you to travel, a fine on arrival, or the Greek authorities not allowing you to enter the country.
5. Greenland All passengers are required to follow provisions related to testing and quarantine and to fill out a “Sumut” form. The latest guidance on entry requirements for travel to Greenland can be found here.
6. Italy (including Vatican City) You should download and complete a self-declaration from the Interior Ministry before you travel.
7. Liechtenstein While Liechtenstein is on travel corridors list, it has no airport and its only land borders are with Austria and Switzerland – both of which are not. To reach it without needing to self-isolate on your return to Britain you will need to fly to a travel corridor country (such as Germany) and drive to Liechtenstein without leaving your vehicle to mix with anyone in a “red list” country.
9. San Marino You must travel through Italy to reach San Marino. See “Italy”, above.
12. Turkey All arrivals into Turkey will be subject to a medical evaluation for symptoms of coronavirus, including temperature checks. Any passengers showing symptoms will be required to undergo a PCR test.
Advantage Travel Partnership backs The Telegraph’s Test4Travel campaign
Julia Lo Bue-Said, CEO of the Advantage Travel Partnership commented:
We fully support the Daily Telegraph’s Test4Travel campaign and believe the development of the Covid-19 ‘double testing’ method that has been piloted at airports in the UK and Europe could be the life-line the travel industry needs to salvage what has been a seriously challenging year. The two-part test will be a vital step to revive transatlantic business travel which has been devastated over the past six months and could be the development required to establish the all-important city air corridor between New York and London.
It is critical that the UK and US governments adopt a coordinated approach in responding to COVID-19 and the evolving situation, however it has been clear there is a lack of understanding on how the travel industry works, particularly the business travel sector and its value in contributing to UK jobs and the economy. Double testing combined with a NYC/London air corridor could pave the way globally for a new way of living, working, travelling and trading the world over as we learn to adapt to a way of life with COVID-19.
The impact for business and leisure travel will be catastrophic if urgent action is not sanctioned. The UK has the opportunity to lead and we urge the Government to take up poll-position and begin the process towards positive recovery.
Holiday quarantine: the situation in Greece
Greece recorded 453 new cases on September 21, its highest daily figure since May, and was removed from Scotland’s travel “green list” recently. Furthermore, several islands, including Crete and Mykonos, have been removed from the quarantine-free lists of England and Wales. However, deaths remain low and the mainland is unlikely to be removed from the UK-wide list any time soon.
The FCDO website states: “You must complete an online Passenger Locator Form (PLF) at least 24 hours before your arrival in Greece. Failure to do so in advance may result in your carrier not allowing you to travel, a 500 Euro fine on arrival or the Greek authorities not allowing you to enter the country.
“Once you have completed the form, you will receive an email acknowledgement. In a separate email, you will also receive a QR code. This code is likely to be sent up to 24 hours before you travel, regardless of how early you fill in your form. When you receive your code, make sure you either print it, or can show it on your mobile phone.”
The safest options for a last-minute break
The following countries have a case rate below 15, are not on the quarantine list, and are feasible holiday options for UK travellers:
San Marino (3)
St Lucia (0.5)
Which country will be added to the quarantine list this week?
As a rule of thumb, the Government starts getting twitchy when a country’s seven-day case rate exceeds 20 per 100,000. However, the UK’s own case rate has now passed that threshold (as of September 22, it stands at 38.7), so it seems to be exercising a little more leniency.
Denmark, Iceland and Ireland are the countries on the green list with the highest case rates (52.2, 40.2 and 40.1, respectively), so appear the most likely to face the chop. However, other factors come into play such as a country’s population size, the number of Britons who visit, and other measures introduced to stop the spread of the virus. Iceland, for example, tests all overseas arrivals twice, with a five-day quarantine period in between. It is also a small country visited by relatively few Britons. These factors could keep it on the list of travel corridors.
Given the complications posed by the Common Travel Area, Ireland may also be spared.
The UK Government reviews its policy every Thursday, announcing changes on Twitter at 5pm, with destinations usually removed from 4am on a Saturday morning.
What happened yesterday?
Cheddar Gorge and Caves to close
India easing restrictions despite increase in cases
Airbus reveals ‘zero emissions’ hydrogen-fuelled aircraft for 2035
A ‘disproportionate’ number of female pilots risk losing their jobs
No Australia New Zealand travel bubble until 2021 earliest
More updates to follow throughout the day.