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Sri Lanka and Israel corridors

More changes to travel corridors list, despite current ban on travel

A host of countries have been added to the travel corridors list, including the popular tourist destinations of Israel and Sri Lanka.

As is now common on Thursdays, Grant Shapps, the transport secretary, announced changes to the list, which determine whether tourists need to quarantine upon their entry to the UK.

No countries were removed from the list this week, but Israel, Namibia, Rwanda, Sri Lanka, Uruguay, Bonaire, St Eustatius & Saba, The Northern Mariana Islands and The Us Virgin Islands were all added.

Shapps said: “If you arrive from these countries after 4am on Saturday November 21 you will not need to self-isolate. Please remember that under the current restrictions travel outside of the home, with the exception of a limited number of reasons including work or education, is not permitted.”

It is the second week in a row that swathes of changes to the list were made despite travel abroad currently being banned in the UK. Last week, Greece was removed from the list – but the islands of Corfu, Crete, Rhodes, Zakynthos and Kos remain.

Shapps said he was adding Bahrain, Chile, Cambodia, Laos, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Turks & Caicos Islands to the list. Iceland, which was removed in September, has now been re-added. If you arrive from these countries after 4am on Saturday November 14 you will not need to self-isolate.

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It marked the third month in a row when changes have been made to Greece. In September, the Greek islands of Lesvos, Tinos, Serifos, Mykonos, Crete, Santorini and Zakynthos were removed from the travel corridors list. But, in early October, all of these islands, aside from Mykonos and Crete, were added. Mykonos and Crete were then added, separately, later in October.

Last week, an ABTA spokesperson said: “It is good that the government is continuing to review and add destinations to the travel corridor list. This at least makes some progress ready for when people are able to travel again after lockdown in England and opens up more routes for those parts of the UK where international travel is still allowed.

“But today’s announcement is also a reminder that the government needs to move to a fully regionalised approach, so that restrictions can be applied to isolated areas as opposed to whole mainlands or countries. We also can’t stress enough the urgent need for the government’s Global Travel Taskforce to have an effective testing regime ready to go for when lockdown is lifted.”

Lisa McAuley, managing director B2B tour operations at Dnata Travel Europe, said: “The announcement of a travel corridor to the UAE is fantastic news, and opens up the opportunity for agents to make some much needed winter sun bookings.