The new world order: With much of Britain now creeping into lockdown, countries on the quarantine list might not seem such a bad bet

  • There are no entry requirements for Sweden and masks are not mandatory in public or on public transport
  • In France you must complete a form saying you’ve no symptoms – masks are compulsory in enclosed spaces
  • A negative test taken within seven days of flying is required for travellers wanting to visit Antigua 

Change is afoot — almost every day. So where can you go and what can you do, or not do, once you’re there? 

With many of us practically confined to barracks, does it really matter if you have to self-isolate when you get home? 

Here is everything you need to know. 

A map showing which countries are open to British holidaymakers, which are open with restrictions and which have their borders closed 

Short haul…

GREECE

Cases: 23,947 Deaths: 482

Entry requirements: Visitors must complete a passenger locator form (travel.gov.gr) at least 24 hours before travel. Quarantine free on return, except for Mykonos. Different rules apply for Scotland and Wales: gov.scot or gov.wales.

While there: Face masks mandatory in public indoor spaces. Local lockdowns could be imposed.

IT’S A DEAL: Seven nights’ half-board at MarBella Corfu Hotel from £969pp in October with flights (sovereign.com).

CYPRUS

Cases: 2,285 Deaths: 25

Entry requirements: Must show proof of a negative test taken within 72 hours of travel and complete a Cyprus Flight Pass form 24 hours before departure (cyprusflightpass.gov.cy).

While there: Face masks must be worn in enclosed public spaces.

IT’S A DEAL: Seven nights’ all-inclusive at Louis Sofianna Resort, Paphos, from November 8 from £442 with tui.co.uk.

PORTUGAL

In Portugal, face masks are mandatory on public transport and in restaurants, bars and shops

Cases: 93,294 Deaths: 2,128

Entry requirements: Health screenings on arrival in mainland Portugal. For Madeira, Porto Santo and the Azores, a negative Covid-19 test is required before arrival. Those who test positive will have to isolate until returning a negative test. Not a UK travel corridor. The Foreign Office advises against non-essential travel to mainland Portugal.

While there: Face masks mandatory on public transport, restaurants, bars and in shops. In Madeira they must be worn in public places inside and out. Gatherings in public across Portugal are now limited to five people.

IT’S A DEAL: Seven nights’ B&B at Belmond Reid’s Palace Madeira from £1,449pp in November including flights (trailfinders.com).

SWEDEN

Cases: 102,407 Deaths: 5,910

Entry requirements: None.

While there: Masks not required in public or on public transport.

IT’S A DEAL: Four nights at Brandon Lodge on the stunning Lulea archipelago from £1,643pp including flights, excursions and meals (discover-the-world.com).

GERMANY

Alcohol sales are banned in Berlin, pictured, between 11pm and 6am. In Frankfurt and Munich, bars and restaurants close at 10pm

Cases: 349,639 Deaths: 9,816

Entry requirements: Restrictions vary. Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales, North East England, North West England, the Midlands, Yorkshire and the Humber region are ‘high risk’. Travellers from those areas must show proof of a negative test.

While there: The country is on the brink of a second national lockdown. Alcohol sales are banned in Berlin between 11pm and 6am. In Frankfurt and Munich, bars and restaurants close at 10pm, with similar restrictions in several other big cities.

IT’S A DEAL: Ryanair has return Stansted-Berlin flights in December from £47 (ryanair.com); three nights’ B&B for two people at Hotel Amano in Berlin from £266 (amanogroup.de).

FINLAND

Cases: 13,133 Deaths: 350

Entry requirements: From November 23, British tourists should be permitted to travel, quarantine-free for up to 72 hours with proof on arrival of a negative test. If the visit exceeds 72 hours, they must quarantine for 72 hours, and then take a second test.

While there: Face masks recommended on public transport, at the airport and if social distancing indoors is not possible.

IT’S A DEAL: Four nights’ B&B at Luosto Hotel in Lapland with flights from Gatwick on December 2 from £694pp with tui.co.uk.

ITALY

In order to enter Italy, Britons must take a negative Covid-19 test within 72 hours of travel. Otherwise, one must be taken on arrival in the country 

Cases: 381,602 Deaths: 36,372 

Entry requirements: A negative test taken within 72 hours of travel. Otherwise one must be taken on arrival (free/£11 depending on airport) with results in an hour. But prior testing is recommended as anyone who tests positive must quarantine. Italy was removed from the UK’s travel corridor list on Thursday. The Foreign Office advises against non-essential travel.

While there: Face masks mandatory indoors and outdoors except in private homes.

IT’S A DEAL: Seven nights’ B&B at Marina Riviera on the Amalfi Coast from £899pp (saving £91pp) in October with flights (citalia.com).

SPAIN

Cases: 921,375 Deaths: 33,553

Entry requirements: Complete a form at spth.gob.es 48 hours before departure. A QR code is sent to show on arrival. Not a UK travel corridor. And the Foreign Office advises against non-essential travel.

While there: Restrictions vary by region. Masks for indoor and outdoor public spaces.

IT’S A DEAL: Seven nights’ half board at Costa Canaria Hotel, Gran Canaria, from November 2 from £593, at tui.co.uk.

FRANCE

In critical areas of France, including Paris, pictured, and Marseille, wearing masks is compulsory in enclosed public spaces and outdoors

Cases: 809,684 Deaths: 33,125

Entry requirements: Arrivals must complete a statement saying they have no symptoms and have not been in contact with cases for 14 days. Not a UK travel corridor. The Foreign Office advises against non-essential travel.

While there: In critical areas, including Paris and Marseille, wearing masks is compulsory in enclosed public spaces and outdoors. Bars in Paris were shut for two weeks on October 5. This week a 9pm curfew for restaurants, theatres, bars and similar business began there and in other cities.

IT’S A DEAL: Seven nights room-only at the Amaryllis hotel in Nice from £284pp in January with flights (onthebeach.co.uk).

Long haul…

ST LUCIA

Arrivals on the Caribbean island of St Lucia, pictured, must have a confirmed reservation at Covid-19 certified accommodation

Cases: 31 Deaths: 0

Entry requirements: A negative test taken within seven days of flying and completing a form: stlucia.org/en_UK/covid-19. Temperature checks at the airport.

While there: Arrivals must have a confirmed reservation at Covid-19 certified accommodation. Guests must remain at their hotel and only leave for activities organised by the accommodation.

IT’S A DEAL: Rooms at Windjammer Landing (windjammer-landing.com) St Lucia are 50 per cent off from November 19 to December 18, 2021, if booked by December 19. Seven nights all-inclusive is from £731pp. BA (ba.com) London to St Lucia from £430 return.

BARBADOS 

Cases: 218 Deaths: 7

Entry requirements: Complete online immigration form 24 hours before travel (travelform.gov.bb) and have a negative test taken up to 72 hours before arrival.

While there: A second test is also required (free) four or five days after the initial test. While waiting for results, which should be returned overnight, visitors must stay in their certified hotel.

IT’S A DEAL: Seven nights’ B&B at Fairmont Royal Pavilion In November from £1,775 including flights (70 per cent off) (elegantresorts.co.uk).

ANTIGUA

On the island of Antigua, pictured, guests can leave the hotel but face masks are mandatory in public spaces

Cases: 112 Deaths: 3

Entry requirements: A negative test taken within seven days of flying required, plus completion of a Health Declaration Form. Visitors will be monitored for 14-days and further testing costing up to $100 is a possibility. Must book certified accommodation (visitantiguabarbuda.com).

While there: Guests can leave the hotel but face masks mandatory in public spaces.

IT’S A DEAL: Seven nights’ B&B at Carlisle Bay from £2,035pp in November, including flights (sovereign.com).

SEYCHELLES

Cases: 149 Deaths: 0

Entry requirements: Show proof of a negative test on arrival taken within 48 hours of arrival and spend five days in isolation at an authorised hotel. Tests conducted on the fifth day and results take up to 24 hours. If negative, tourists are free to explore the islands.

While there: While isolating at an authorised hotel, guests can use pools and private beaches and eat in restaurants away from others. Face masks on public transport, in shops and outdoors if social distancing not possible.

IT’S A DEAL: Seven nights’ B&B at the Avani Barbarons Seychelles resort from £1,253pp including flights in December (ba.com).

BERMUDA

If you’re travelling to Bermuda, pictured, pack a thermometer. That’s because temperatures must be taken twice a day and reported online

Cases: 185 Deaths: 9

Entry requirements: Show proof of a negative test taken within seven days and apply for travel authorisation three days before flying (£58) to cover cost of test on arrival (gov.bm/coronavirus-travellers ). Results usually within 24 hours, plus tests on fourth and eighth days of stays.

While there: Pack a thermometer: temperatures must be taken twice a day and reported online. Face masks must be worn in enclosed spaces if social distancing not possible.

IT’S A DEAL: Seven nights’ B&B at Cambridge Beaches Resort and Spa from £1,649pp in March with flights (no direct flights). Book by October 31 for stays until March 31 (prestigeholidays.co.uk).

Pick of the rest

GIBRALTAR: Quarantine free.

ST VINCENT & THE GRENADINES: British tourists must arrive with a negative test and quarantine in an approved hotel until a second negative test result. No direct flights.

DOMINICA: British tourists must fill in online form and arrive with negative test. Pinprick test at airport and five days’ quarantine.

CUBA: Some areas open to British tourists but no direct flights. Tui resumes package holidays and direct flights on November 7.

RUSSIA: British tourists welcome since August 1 with a negative test taken within 72 hours of travel. Not a UK travel corridor.

*Figures and regulations correct at time of publication.

HOW TO GET TESTED BEFORE FLYING 

More and more countries, including Italy, Cyprus and Barbados, are requiring travellers to submit a negative Covid-19 PCR test result before arrival. Here’s how to do this:

  • First, check if this is required by your destination at gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.
  • The timeframe for having your test ranges from seven days to 72 hours before travel or arrival — check what applies for you and factor in time zones, too. Age limits for children vary.
  • Tests for travel aren’t available on the NHS. You need to visit a private clinic or use an online service that posts out a kit. Search ‘how to take a coronavirus self-test swab’ on YouTube for a helpful NHS video. Some labs have reduced services at weekends. If time is tight, deliver your sample in person or by courier rather than relying on the post.
  • Price vary significantly. Your airline may have a tie-in with a test provider — British Airways uses CityDoc (citydoc.org.uk), where the cost for passengers is from £93. Nomad Travel (nomadtravel.co.uk) has clinics in six UK cities with fees from £160. If you’re in a rush, a same-day test at fleetstreetclinic.com in London costs £495.
  • Your result and a test certificate will be emailed to you, generally within 48 hours (remember to check your spam folder). If it is negative, print the test certificate, fill in any other online forms required, and enjoy your holiday.
  • If your test is positive, cancel your trip. You may be able to re-book or make a claim if your insurance has Covid-19 cover — some Post Office policies do (postoffice.co.uk/travel-insurance).

BY NIGEL TISDALL 

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