Traveling to the UK from Spain still requires a 10-day isolation period and two PCR tests. In the latest update of destinations that the Government of Boris Johnson carries out every three weeks, no new country has been added to the green list, the only one that allows travel without restrictions and is considered safe. in fact, the opposite has happened.
Portugal, which appeared in it, has gone to the amber color, the same one in which the most popular holiday destinations for the British are found, such as Spain, France, Italy, Greece, which do not vary. In the Spanish case there are no exceptions for the Balearic Islands or the Canary Islands.
The announcement of the British Executive supposes a blow, who knows if definitive, to the expectations of the Spanish tourism sector, which is temporarily left without the arrival of 12 million travelers .
According to the Minister of Transport, Grant Shapps , “the number of infections has almost doubled since the last review in Portugal. Another reason is the new mutation in Nepal derived from the Indian variant, which has been recently detected and we do not know the potential of vaccines to fight it. ”
The minister insists that the protection of British territory is the priority. “We just don’t want to take chances when we have to review step four to lift restrictions on June 21.”
More destinations on the red list
The Government has also added seven new destinations to which travel is totally prohibited. They are Afghanistan, Bahrain, Costa Rica, Egypt, Sri Lanka, Sudan and Trinidad Tobago. In this group there were already a good number of countries from South America and Africa.
Only UK residents can travel there for justified and exceptional reasons. On their return, they must spend ten days in quarantine in a hotel, with expenses on their own and from which they can only leave once they have passed two negative PCR tests.
Lack of transparency
Of all the changes, the inclusion of Portugal on the amber list has caused the most confusion and discomfort. The new list will take effect next Tuesday so that tourists who are there can return. They were the ones who prepared the suitcases on May 17, when the Government had given the British free rein to travel to one of their favorite destinations. Now the change catches many with the vacation packages already purchased.
The news of the change caused an immediate fall in the stock market of the actions of airlines and travel companies. Indignation was rife in the sector. Speaking to the Chanel 4 chain, Karen Smart, executive director of Manchester Airport, asked the Government for transparency.
“We have been working with him to put in place the traffic light system that we have seen now. What we have not had is transparency on the part of the Government on how they make decisions ”
Balearic and Canary Islands
Smart recalled that, “we have provided data that suggests that other countries have made great progress in recent weeks and there are cases with lower levels than in the United Kingdom. Places like the Balearic Islands, the Canary Islands, the Greek islands, simply cannot understand how They have not been considered for the green list at this time. We ask the government to be transparent about how it makes decisions. ”
For the agency lastminute.com, the review is, “a great blow for British tourists and for the entire industry. These continuous changes do not help neither the industry nor the consumers ”. Johan Peter Lundgren, CEO of easyJet airline condemned the update. “The decision that has been made is unjustified and irrational. It isolates us from Europe and the rest of the world. I hope they reconsider. It is very confusing for the British ”.