Well, did they or didn’t they? Some reports say Prime Minister Boris Johnson and French president Emmanuel Macron discussed a reciprocal arrangement to allow holidays to go ahead this summer in their respective countries without any need to self-isolate; others, including a No 10 spokesman, said it ‘didn’t come up’.
Which is symptomatic of the shambolic way the Government has handled travel to and from the UK during the Covid-19 crisis.
Foreign secretary Dominic Raab and others have talked about a ‘road map’ so that companies can ready themselves for the peak summer season — but what sort of map is it when Boris can only come up with a ‘watch this space’ soundbite.
A map showing countries around Europe and whether you should count on being able to visit them this summer
That’s why we are helping readers find a way through the quagmire.
Should you cancel your villa booking for July or August? Will you be welcome wherever it is you had planned to go?
Wait and see is one sure-fire strategy, with the PM expected to make a pronouncement next week.
But time is running out — for summer holidays, travel firms and hotels and B&Bs. Here we reveal, where we’re welcome and where we’re not…
UNSURE IN SPAIN
Spain re-opens to all EU citizens tomorrow… except us. Most restaurants and beaches are open. Pictured is Benalmadena on the Costa del Sol
Britain’s favourite holiday destination reopens to all EU citizens tomorrow… except us.
Spain is upset about our 14-day quarantine, so is maintaining reciprocal rules.
Common sense may soon prevail in the form of a quarantine-free ‘air corridor’. Most restaurants and beaches are open, shops are at 50 per cent capacity and groups of up to 30 tourists can gather in public.
CYPRUS WAITING GAME
The first tourists no longer needing to produce proof of a negative coronavirus test will be welcomed today from 22 countries. Britons will be allowed in when the UK infection rate falls.
The Cypriot government has announced it will pay for accommodation, medicine and food for tourists who test positive during their stay on the island, and their families.
A 100-bed hospital is being set aside for holidaymakers, as well as ‘quarantine hotels’ for patients’ families.
PORTUGAL WANTS YOU!
Portugal lifted travel restrictions for British visitors on June 6 but visitors are warned that the nightlife will be limited
Travel restrictions were lifted for British visitors on June 6.
‘Air corridor’ discussions are said to be advanced. Portugal’s foreign minister warns that nightlife will be limited to prevent people congregating in large numbers.
Restaurants, hotels and beaches are open with social distancing.
GOOD CHANCE IN FRANCE
Borders opened to most European countries on Monday except for travellers coming from nations with quarantine measures, including Britain, where rules are reciprocal.
It is unclear whether PM Boris Johnson discussed the possibility of an ‘air bridge’ when he met with French president Emmanuel Macron.
It is understood to have been discussed between officials, instead. France reopened its bars, cafes and restaurants on June 2. P&O is operating reduced ferry services on cross-Channel routes, as is Eurostar on London-Paris rail journeys.
LOOKING GOOD IN GREECE
Greece has said it is open to creating an ‘air bridge’ with the UK. Pictured is the Sithonia in north-east Greece
The country has said it is open to creating an ‘air bridge’ with the UK. Currently, tourists from countries, such as Britain, deemed too high risk face testing on arrival. A negative result will mean self-isolation for seven days; a positive test will result in 14 days’ quarantine.
However, these restrictions will be lifted on July 1, when international flights will resume and tourists will be tested randomly.
Hotels, restaurants, bars and beaches have reopened with restrictions.
ITALY OPENS UP
Italy opened up to tourists, including those from the UK on June 3. Most hotels and restaurants have re-opened with reduced capacity
Border controls were lifted for travellers, including those from the UK, on June 3, when the 14-day quarantine policy was also dropped.
Most hotels, beaches, restaurants and bars have reopened with reduced capacity and a 1.5-metre distancing policy.
KEEN IN CROATIA
Britons must complete online forms before going, providing proof that accommodation has been booked.
Hotels have reopened, some with tempting rates.
For example, a week at a four-star hotel in Split is from £705 B&B (booking.com).
ALL GO IN GERMANY
Last Monday, travel restrictions for British holidaymakers were lifted.
Some hotels, bars and restaurants have reopened.
Rules governing social distancing vary slightly within Germany’s 16 federal states.
Confusingly, the border is open for quarantine-free visitors from Northern Ireland, but those from the UK mainland require a 14-day quarantine.
Travel restrictions of 14 miles are in place within Ireland.
Hotels, restaurants and pubs serving ‘substantial meals’ can reopen from June 29.
MALTA IS A MAYBE
Tourists from some EU countries can visit without quarantine from July 1, when airports also open.
No date has been announced for UK tourists.
Masks are mandatory in shops and on public transport. Some restaurants and hotels have reopened.
Officials from the UK and Turkey have reportedly been in talks about creating a quarantine-free ‘air corridors’, possibly by July 15.
Turkish Airlines flights to and from the UK resumed on June 11.
DON’T BET ON BULGARIA
Tourists from Belgium, Portugal, Sweden and UK are subject to 14 days of quarantine.
Some direct flights are operating from the UK. Most hotels, bars and restaurants have reopened.
Masks are mandatory on public transport and enclosed public spaces.
CZECH? NOT YET
The Czech Republic has a traffic-light system with people from safe countries marked green. Tourists from the UK are currently orange (medium risk)
A traffic-light system was introduced on Monday.
People from safe countries, marked green, are able to travel to the country, but tourists from orange (medium-risk) countries, including the UK, and red (high-risk) countries are denied entry.
Countries are assessed weekly. Hotels, outdoor restaurants and museums are open, and events of up to 500 people are allowed.
Tourists from Norway, Denmark, Iceland, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania are permitted.
Other EU countries may be welcome from July 14.
Hotels are open and bars and restaurants must close by 11pm.
A quarantine for visitors has recently been lifted and hikes in the mountains and lakelands await. EasyJet had flights to Geneva.
It has been possible for visitors to travel to Sweden throughout the lockdown. Pictured is the capital Stockholm
Throughout the lockdown it has been possible to visit Sweden — where a liberal approach to coronavirus has been applied.
Ryanair has flights to Stockholm, which could be perfect for a city break.
Border restrictions were relaxed on Monday, though travellers from some countries, including the UK and Spain, must provide proof of a negative coronavirus test or self-isolate for 14 days.
Restaurants, bars and hotels are reopening.
Masks are mandatory on public transport and also in shops.
BELGIUM IS OPEN
Belgium is open after all travel restrictions for European visitors were dropped on Monday. Pictured is the city of Bruges
All restrictions were dropped for European travellers on Monday.
Eurostar has a reduced service, while public transport is running, with masks mandatory.
Museums, shops, restaurants and some tourist attractions are open.
DANES DASH HOPES
Closed for tourists except those from Norway, Germany and Iceland.
Restaurants, shops and some hotels are open.
The border will remain closed for most tourists until at least September 1.
NETHERLANDS – STANDBY
Tourists from Britain may be allowed in the Netherlands from June 28. Pictured is the capital Amsterdam
Visitors from the EU and the Schengen countries, except Sweden and the UK, are permitted to enter the country with no quarantine.
Tourists from Britain may be allowed in from July 1. Hotels, restaurants and cafes have re-opened.
Eurostar is due to operate to and from the UK from June 28. Masks are mandatory on public transport.
SLOPE OFF TO SLOVAKIA?
Unlikely. UK visitors must show recent negative test results and also go into self-isolation for five days on arrival until you have a second negative test.
Quarantine for UK tourists has been in place since June 13. No direct flights are currently available from Britain.