Seven popular Greek islands, including Mykonos and Santorini, have been removed from England's travel corridors as the country updated its mandatory quarantine rules for anyone arriving into the country, including returning citizens and residents.
The Greek islands of Crete, Lesvos, Mykonos, Santorini, Serifos, Tinos and Zakynthos have been removed from England's travel corridor list, meaning passengers are required to quarantine when arriving from these places due to a considerable rise in new daily coronavirus cases there in recent weeks. The rule comes into effect on Wednesday, September 9 at 4am. The UK's transport minister Grant Shapp's announced the news on Monday as part of his weekly quarantine updates, explaining that islands can now be treated under different rules from their mainland countries if infection rates differ.
"New scientific capability and capacity now means we can take a more targeted approach to travel corridors, giving England the flexibility to add or remove islands from the list based on clear evidence - whilst ensuring maximum protection to UK public health," Shapps said.
European countries still on England's travel corridor list include Ireland, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Finland, Cyprus, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Slovakia, Slovenia and Portugal. Far-flung destinations like Barbados, Mauritius, Malaysia and Vietnam are also included. You can access the full list of travel corridor countries here as it's updated on a weekly basis.
Separately, Scotland announced it was removing Greece from its travel corridor list, while Wales is removing six islands – Mykonos, Zakynthos, Lesvos, Paros, Antiparos and Crete – from its travel corridor, but not the rest of the country. Scotland and Wales have both removed Portugal (Wales is making exemptions for the Azores and Madeira) but England and Northern Ireland are still welcoming passengers from Portugal without imposing quarantine restrictions on them.
"As with all air bridge countries, please be aware that things can change quickly. Only travel if you are content to unexpectedly 14-day quarantine if required," Shapps said.
This article was first published on June 8 and updated on September 8, 2020.