Italy goes on quarantine list forcing Brit holidaymakers to isolate for 14 days on return

ITALY has been ADDED to the quarantine list and British holidaymakers will have to isolate for 14 days from 4am on Sunday, the Transport Secretary announced this evening.

Grant Shapps announced he was slapping travel restrictions on the holiday hotspot this evening but Brits will now be able to head to Crete without needing to quarantine.

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Mr Shapps said this evening: "We are REMOVING ITALY, Vatican City state & San Marino from the #TravelCorridor list.

"However, note that the implementation date is moved to 4am on SUNDAY 18 October & applies UK wide, if you arrive from these destinations you will need to self-isolate."

And he continued: "We are ADDING CRETE to the #TravelCorridor list this week. From 4am Sunday 18 Oct, if you arrive from Crete, you will NO LONGER need to self-isolate."

The quarantine will now come into force on Sunday, rather than Saturday, as it has done over the last few months to give people some more time to get back to Britain.

Italy was not quite over the threshold for travel restrictions but is expected to be by early next week.

It means the advice on quarantine-free travel to the Greek islands has been unified across the four nations, after Mr Shapps gave a handful of Greek islands back their quarantine-free status last week.

Italy's infection rate jumped to 64.4 cases per 100,000 on a 7 day rolling average, with 3.5 per cent of people swabbed testing positive for coronavirus.

The holiday hotspots 14-day rate was 96 cases per 100,000 – a massive 150 per cent higher in the last two weeks.

The number of people in hospital with the virus has also skyrocketed from 4,000 to 6,000 in one week alone.

The are very few European countries which haven't had quarantine measures slapped on them for Brits to jet off to over the half-term break.

But the hopes of both holidaymakers and the travel industry were bolstered yesterday when Mr Shapps suggested the quarantine period could be slashed by an "early release" plan.

Mr Shapps told the virtual ABTA travel industry conference today that travellers will still have to self-isolate at home – but will be able to take a Covid test days after landing, and leave if they test negative.

He said: "We're proposing a domestic test regime, where people land… have a test and get early release."

The test must take place "in person", and will have to be paid for out of passengers' pockets to prevent holidaymakers taking up crucial NHS resources.

Currently, anyone returning from all but a handful of countries have to self-isolate for 14 days.

Extra measures could also mean travellers could isolate before jetting off, meaning they could holiday to countries that impose quarantine on incoming Brits without having to take weeks off.

Mr Shapps added: "We're also proposing an internationally recognised system, in which Britain would be a trailblazer, where tests and isolation take place prior to travel and after travel and would require no quarantine."

He said the measures would likely "result in significantly more people flying in the months ahead".


 

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