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France major u-turn with vaccinated Britons to be welcomed this week

In a dramatic u-turn, France‘s Embassy has announced the nation will welcome back UK travellers for non-essential travel from Wednesday, June 9. The nation is set to adopt its own traffic light-style system similar to the one currently in place in the UK.

The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) is set to provide more travel advice for Britons looking to visit France “in due course”.

On Friday, France’s Government released a new document called Strategy for Reopening Borders which outlines how British travellers can return to the country for leisure purposes as long as they are fully vaccinated.

It is understood they must have received both doses of the COVID-19 vaccination at least two weeks before travel to the country.

The French embassy has outlined the specific vaccines which are accepted by the country, with all three on offer in the UK – Pfizer/BioNTech, Oxford/AstraZeneca and Moderna – currently given the green light.

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“You may do this only if you have been fully vaccinated in the UK, you must wait five days after your second dose).

“You need to travel in the next four weeks to a country which is asking for proof of vaccination.

“You cannot access the app or online service or you should receive your NHS letter within seven days.”

However, even fully vaccinated passengers must provide evidence of a negative COVID-19 test.

Children accompany fully vaccinated adults will not be required to have had a jab but must show evidence of a negative COVID-19 test result.

It is widely thought this means children under the age of 11, which may be concerning for teenagers who will not be eligible for a Covid vaccine before the end of the summer.

Britons who have not been vaccinated are only permitted to travel to France if they can provide a “compelling reason” for visiting.

They will also be required to produce evidence of a negative COVID-19 test and self-isolate for seven days.

However, at the time of writing, France remains on the UK’s amber list for travel.

The FCDO is currently advising “against all but essential travel to the whole of France based on the current assessment of COVID-19 risks.”

From June 9, France is also set to reopen its borders to European tourists.

Earlier on Friday, the French government announced plans to remove the need for vaccinated Europeans to provide negative Covid tests.

coronavirus tests for vaccinated Europeans and allowing vaccinated tourists from most of the world, including the US, to visit, provided they had a negative test.

Author:
This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Travel Feed

Spain holidays: 'June' to spark beginning of tourism 'recovery' with Britons welcomed back

Author:
This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Travel Feed

Spain is keen to welcome Britons back to its shores, with the nation’s tourism minister eyeing June as its month for tourism “recovery”. Fernando Valdes Verelst, Spain’s tourism minister, said he is pushing for the UK and Spain’s digital vaccination certifications to be “mutually recognised”.

“Hopefully we will be seeing this summer the restart of holidays.”

However, it is not yet clear whether or not Spain will make it onto the UK’s quarantine-free “green list”.

Speaking on Sky News this morning, UK Secretary of State for Transport Grant Shapps said he would be revealing more about the list “within the next few weeks.”

He said: “The earliest possible unlock is May 17. We won’t have international travel before that.

“So far the data does continue to look good from a UK perspective, notwithstanding those concerns about where people might be travelling to and making sure you’re protected from the disease being reimported.

“But specifically on when I’ll be able to say more about it, I haven’t been able to do it a long time advance because the situation changes the whole time with this pandemic, but it will be towards the beginning of May when I will set out which countries fall into the various different countries.”

According to the European Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (ECDC) Spain recorded a rate of 247.25 confirmed cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 inhabitants over the previous 14 days cumulative.

By comparison, according to Gov.uk, the UK recorded 25.3 per 100,000 of the population in the previous seven days cumulative.

Though the Government has not yet given any indication as to which nations are on the table for “green” list status, experts have been using available data to predict which countries could make the cut.

Analysis carried out by Robert Boyle, former strategy chief at BA and its owner IAG, looked at the Government’s four “risk” criteria for travel.

This includes vaccination rates, Covid prevalence, the extent of variants and the capacity for genome sequencing of the virus.

Under this modelling, Mr Boyle predicted the USA, Gibraltar, Israel, Iceland, Ireland, Malta, Australia and New Zealand could be on the list.

However, he noted economic and political factors could see Spain also being included.

The report said: “Last year, the Spanish and Greek islands were given a lower-risk rating than the mainland and that could happen again this year.”

Greece holidays: Britons welcomed to ‘book flights’ in positive sign from tourism minster

Greece’s tourism minister Harry Theoharis has shown positivity British holidaymakers will be welcomed back in time for the summer. In fact, he is so confident the minister encouraged Britons to “book holidays” now.
Meanwhile, the UK is already steaming ahead with its vaccination effort.

In the week ending February 28 an additional 2,249,002 people were reported to have received an NHS vaccination for COVID-19 in England.

This took the total number of people vaccinated with at least one dose to 17,179,491.

Of those vaccinated, 598,345 people have received a second dose, taking the total number of vaccinations given to 17,777,836.

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Speaking to The Telegraph, Mr Theoharis said Britons can “book flights and start choosing the places where they want to go.”

However, at the time of writing, the UK Government has given no confirmation as to when international holidays will resume.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has warned it will not be before May 17, with the Global Travel Taskforce due to reconvene in April to discuss the possibility of international travel.

When the time comes, though, the Greek tourism minister said the nation wanted to make travel to the country “as smooth and hassle-free as possible.”

It may also share details on whether a person has previously been diagnosed with the virus.

As Greece is an EU member state, should the “digital green pass” be agreed upon, tourists hoping to visit would likely need to provide this information.

For now, though, travel is off the cards for Britons under lockdown rules which see leisure travel been classed as illegal.

The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) is also advising against all but essential travel to Greece.

However, it adds: “The FCDO is not advising against travel to the islands of Rhodes, Kos, Zakynthos, Corfu and Crete.”

Inside £1.8 million barge which has welcomed Prince Charles & Princess Anne

Barges are long boats which have become popular for canal holidays. They are also often renovated into small homes, giving residents the ability to relocate and dock up all across the UK.
“He gave me this very, very pretty little solid silver pillbox, I apologise to Prince Charles for not keeping clean.”

In footage from the documentary, the barge is flooded with light thanks to floor to ceiling glass windows showing views of the surrounding Thames.

The space is so vast Mr Bonham is able to fit in all of the typical amenities one might find at home, including comfortable chairs, a television and a dining area.

“For the £1.8million price tag, you could buy five three-bedroom houses in some parts of Britain with a nice garden,” states the documentary.

Some of Mr Bonham’s favourite items, all located at auction, include many Maritime themed pieces of furniture.

Prospect Quay, where the houseboat has spent much of its life, also boasts an array of amenities for its guests.

“Just upriver of Buckingham Palace and with Harrods as a local corner shop this harbour complete with gym and swimming pool is fit for a millionaire,” explains the documentary.

Located at the east of Wandsworth Park, according to the Thames Festival Trust, Prospect Quay boasts a “close community where everyone knows one another”.

Some of the houseboats are navigable, while others remain stationary as purpose-built houseboats.

“In August 2016, the most expensive houseboat on the tidal Thames was for sale at Prospect Quay, the asking price on River Homes was £1,795,000,” explains the Thames Festival Trust.

Other amenities available to guests include a sauna, steam room and secure car park.

The mooring and maintenance levy is approximately £5,000 per annum.

Million Pound Barges is on Channel 5 tonight at 8pm.