Foreign Office advice you should be aware of when visiting France, Spain and other countries

Many people will be looking to get away this summer, especially now that Covid restrictions have eased.

Anyone planning on going abroad or those who have already booked should familiarise themselves with the latest Foreign Office advice.

The government still has its traffic light system in place, which was introduced when borders started opening again.

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The system has different guidelines depending on what category the country you’re visiting is in.

However, this doesn’t include that country’s own travel guidelines which travellers should also familiarise themselves with.

To avoid any issues on your travels, make sure to check what category the country you’re travelling to is in as well as any rules, especially if you’re not fully vaccinated, MEN recommend.

My London reported that last Friday, the Department of Health said the cost of the NHS Test and Trace tests for international arrivals would go down from £88 to £68 – this only applies to those returning from green list countries or amber list countries who are fully vaccinated.

The cost for people who aren’t fully vaccinated and arriving from an amber list country has also been reduced from £170 to £136 for two sets of tests.

Which countries have been added to the green lists for England?

If a country is on the green list, that means the government believes their respective coronavirus situation is safe enough to permit returning passengers to not self-isolate.

Countries currently on the green list include:

  • Austria
  • Bulgaria
  • Croatia (green watchlist – could be moved to amber)
  • Germany
  • Malta
  • Norway
  • Romania
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia

France

France has been moved from the amber-plus list onto the regular amber list this means under-18s and fully vaccinated passengers won’t have to self-isolate for 10 days.

Upon arrival in France, travellers will have to show proof of vaccination status and complete déclaration sur l’honneur (sworn statement) certifying they are not suffering from any symptoms of coronavirus.

Spain

Spain, the Canary Islands, and the Balearic Islands are currently on the amber list- this includes Formentera, Ibiza, Mallorca, and Menorca.

The government advising passengers returning from Spain to use a PCR test instead of a lateral flow test.

A Covid test is required three days before returning from Spain, and a PCR test two days after arriving which will be up to travellers to arrange

Anyone arriving from Spain is now being asked to also use a PCR test for the first of those two tests.

Most private providers charge above £60 for PCR tests and £30 for lateral flow devices, however, discounts on these tests are being offered by some countries so make sure to look around in advance to see if you can save money.

Portugal

Portugal and the Azores are currently on the amber list of countries.

However, Madeira, an autonomous island region of Portugal, is on the green list so people arriving from the region will not have to self-isolate or be subject to the same rules as the other regions in Portugal.

Italy

Italy is currently on the amber list of countries.

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Greece

Greece, including the Greek islands, is currently on the amber list.

Rules for Amber list countries

The vast majority of countries are still currently on the government’s amber list.

Anyone currently returning from an amber list country must take a Covid test in the three days before they travel to England, book and pay for Covid tests to be taken after arrival in England, and complete a passenger locator form to say where they have travelled.

Cheshire Live – Cheshire