British holidaymakers can be barred from the European Union from 1 January underneath present Covid-19 security restrictions, with the EU fee indicating there can be no exemption for the UK.
Solely a handful of nations with low coronavirus charges are exempt from guidelines that prohibit nonessential guests from outdoors the EU and European Financial Space (EEA) – with the UK included solely till the top of the Brexit transition interval.
EU member states agreed in October to undertake a European council proposal to permit nonessential journey from a small group of nations with decrease ranges of Covid circumstances together with Australia, New Zealand and South Korea.
An EU fee spokesman final week mentioned there have been no plans to increase that to the UK. “It is a determination for the council to make,” he mentioned.
Throughout the EEA, or Schengen-associated states, Norway has additionally confirmed it can bar UK guests from 1 January, based on the Monetary Occasions.
The upcoming bracketing of British vacationers with these of different non-EU international locations corresponding to Albania and Turkey underlines the potential influence of a no-deal Brexit. EU member states can override the European council suggestions in concept, ought to they want to .
Leisure airways together with easyJet had reported a surge in bookings for 2021 in current weeks after information of a vaccine, however a lot of these journeys can be doubtful.
A UK authorities spokesperson mentioned: “We can’t touch upon choices that may very well be taken by different states on public well being issues.
“We take a scientific, risk-based strategy to well being measures on the border, and it’s after all within the pursuits of all international locations to permit secure worldwide journey as we emerge from the pandemic.”
Underneath European guidelines, people can nonetheless enter the bloc in sure circumstances, primarily for work – together with support staff, care staff, diplomats, healthcare professionals, army personnel, seasonal farm staff and transport staff. Entry for research, transit, and pressing household causes can be permitted.
The Overseas Workplace at present advises in opposition to all nonessential journey to most of Europe, bar some vacation locations corresponding to sure Greek islands, and quarantine on return is required for many who select to journey.
With most insurance coverage insurance policies invalidated by the FCO recommendation – and with the top of the Ehic (European Well being Insurance coverage Card) reciprocal well being cowl scheme on 31 December – UK journey trade sources mentioned that outbound bookings had been at present very low for winter sports activities holidays in 2021.