Here are the countries where you can travel without quarantine …. if they let you in

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The Government has just published two lists which may help clarify your travel options this Summer.

The first list covers countries where quarantine is no longer required when you return to the UK.

The second, longer, list covers countries where the Foreign Office no longer advises you to avoid visiting.  This is important because it means that your travel insurance will now be valid if you travel to these places.

These rules only apply for residents of England.  If you live in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland different rules will apply, and are likely to be more stringent.  This means that you may prefer to return to an English airport and take a train or ferry back home.

The two lists are not identical.  For example, the Foreign Office no longer recommends against travel to Latvia or Canada BUT you would still have to quarantine on your return.

In summary:

if you return from a country on the first list below from 10th July, you will no longer have to quarantine

you WILL need to quarantine if you transit through a country which is not on the first list below

if you have previously returned from a country on the list below, you can end your quarantine on 10th July

from tomorrow, the Foreign & Commonwealth Office advice on avoiding ‘all but essential’ travel will be lifted for countries on the second list below. This means that your travel insurance will be valid again.

you will still need to provide your contact information when you return to the UK, unless you fall into one of the categories on this list 

For absolute clarity, just because the UK allows you to travel to a certain country and return without quarantine, it does not mean that you will be allowed in.  This is obvious from the fact that New Zealand is on the list, for example.  For a good, updated daily, list of restrictions on UK residents, take a look at this article from Wanderlust.

You should not book travel to any country on the list below without checking if the country accepts arrivals from the UK full stop, or only accepts arrivals who agree to a period of quarantine.

These are the places where you can travel from 10th July without having to quarantine on your return (the source list is here).  Remember that there is no guarantee that these countries will let you in – good luck getting into New Zealand before 2021.

Antigua and Barbuda
Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba
Czech Republic
Faroe Islands
French Polynesia
Hong Kong
New Caledonia
New Zealand
San Marino
South Korea
St Barthélemy
St Kitts and Nevis
St Lucia
St Pierre and Miquelon
Trinidad and Tobago
Vatican City

You can also travel to the 14 British Overseas Territories.  Ireland is automatically included as part of the Common Travel Area.

For clarity, if you transit in a country not on this list (for example in Dubai / United Arab Emirates or in Doha) then you WILL have to quarantine on your return to the UK.  I accept that this sounds unnecessary if you do not enter the country where you are transiting, but the wording appears clear.

The second list ….

These are the countries where the Foreign Office advises you can travel to safely from 4th July which means that your travel insurance will be valid once again.

Remember that – unless a country also appears on the ‘no quarantine’ list above – you will still have to quarantine for 14 days on returning to the UK.

Click the link for specific Foreign Office advice for each country.  The source page is here.






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  1. Gruntfuttock says:

    There goes our BA Holidays fly drive trip in early September to Albania 🙄 sigh

    • GinSling76 says:

      We also have a road trip in Albania booked but in the first week of August. We were also going to include Kosovo and north Macedonia but abandoned that idea a few weeks ago. Looks unlikely we will go and now wishing we hadn’t accepted our LGW to LHR flight switch earlier in the week as I expect we are now stuck with the travel voucher option unless BA cancel the flight

  2. It’s worth comparing this list against Lithuania’s equivalent list, which additionally shows infection rates. Lithuania takes a much more open approach than the UK, specifying the maximum infection rate that it will tolerate in a country of origin for for open entry, 14-day quarantine and no entry. Until recently, the UK was on the no-entry list.

    • Bagoly says:

      Yes, all the Baltic states have published numeric thresholds (as does Germany for internal purposes).
      It is truly weird that the English government has put Lithuania on here but not the other two, because the three countries have a “travel bubble”, and similarly low rates of infection.

  3. Graeme2 says:

    I can’t vouch for its accuracy, but the following appears to be a useful souce, updated on a daily basis, of which countries will and won’t let you in:

  4. Fraser says:

    Clear as mud, as usual, from this government. The omission of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland from the first list seems to suggest a 14 day quarantine is necessary if arriving from those countries. And they’re not on the second list either, so you can’t travel there.

    So if you change flights from Edinburgh in London to connect, do you need to quarantine for 14 days both on the way out, and the way home? Or is this not allowed at all?

    When you leave the airport, who is checking where your home is if you’re travelling by road to Newcastle or Gretna?

    • “Coronavirus regulations mean that you must self-isolate for 14 days if you return to the UK from a country outside the common travel area.”

  5. Jeremy I says:

    Hi all, we’re currently in Portugal on holiday for the last week. It’s lovely. Anyway we had a small bash in the rental car yesterday. Do you think amex car hire insurance won’t cover us because we travelled to Portugal against the FCO advice ? Thanks so much Jeremy

    • monsieurcurt says:

      As much as I believe it should only not cover medical care – I don’t think you’re covered for anything I’m afraid…

    • Is this a joke?! If not, you must be relieved you weren’t seriously injured and looking at a 5 figure bill for repatriation.

      • It is a reasonable question though. I enquired with Amex/Axa for a trip to Iceland in September and it seems they would cover car hire. The only thing they won’t cover is anything covid related i.e. quarantine due to covid, hotel in case of lockdown, flights back home, etc.

      • Gormlesstraveller says:

        Why would you want to be repatriated if you were seriously injured? Better to stay in Portugese hospital on your EHIC.

  6. monsieurcurt says:

    I’ve got a trip to Greece booked for September. Good to see the restrictions have been decreased but will I be insured if it was BOOKED during the non-travel advisory period? I don’t see why that would matter but I’ve seen contrasting opinions…

    • The best thing is probably to clarify this with your insurer!

      • Lady London says:

        …or in an extreme case I suppose you could scrutinise the wording in the terms and conditions.

    • Chris Heyes says:

      [email protected] if you ignored FOC Advice.
      Your Insurance has the Legal right to reject all or most claims even if FOC ADVICE is lifted
      Now whether they would is up in the air
      If you take out Insurance after FOC Is lifted or before, (as of now) you should be covered
      Taking out Insurance when FOC Is in place is a very gray area

    • e.g. in the case of Amex Platinum the wording of the terms is totally ambiguous. Which means your options are to ask them (where anecdotally I believe they’ll tell you you’re not covered) or risk it and take it to complaint / FOS if necessary on the grounds of interpreting the terms a certain way / common sense…

    • Dubious says:

      The typical process is whether you proceed with the travel during the ‘no travel’ advice…i.e. you should be covered for medical issues when you travel because the FCO restriction is no longer there.

      However you would not be covered for COVID-19 related cancellations because it is a known event.

      Exact situation dependent on the insurer though as others have said.

  7. Andrew says:

    I see the FCO still advises against travel to the Vatican City, suggesting that a visit to Rome would mean you couldn’t visit St Peters without invalidating your travel insurance.

  8. Does the transit restriction basically put Qatar Airways out of action? Or is it only a problem if you actually enter Doha?

    • You CAN’T enter Doha at the moment. Logically you should be OK but the wording, if you follow the links I provided, specifically says that if you transit somewhere you must quarantine. The word ‘transit’ seems fairly definite – they could have said ‘stopover’ if they only meant to include people taking a short break on the way back.

      • Another nail in the coffin of my next QR trip then!

        • Lady Londost says:

          If you stay airside though I dont think you count as having entered a country. Trouble is, though, the location will have.people resident in the location daily coming airside from landside to work so you may be taking a risk even if the airport allows you to stay airside while transiting (some dont).

          • Likewise you could be in close contact with (or touch something touched by) someone who is transiting from a place not on the permitted countries list. Hence the reason that you still have to self-isolate if your transit country is not on the list.

            It does make a mockery of Australia & NZ being on the list though as most flights would transit via excluded countries (ME3, Malaysia, Singapore etc). HK appears to be the only common gateway country back to the UK from Australia & NZ at the moment.

  9. A. J. says:

    “if you have previously returned from a country on the list below, you can end your quarantine on 10th July”

    Is this explicitly stated in the announcement? Or just a “common sense” interpretation?

  10. Alex W says:

    When you say insurance will be valid, could that exclude Coronavirus? I.e. you would be covered if you tripped and broke your ankle but if you got Covid while abroad, possibly not covered depending on your policy?

    • Yes, it would exclude coronavirus if your policy does not cover pandemics. Twisted ankles are now ok!

  11. The Netherlands ‘strongly recommends’ UK arrivals to self-quarantine. What does this mean? It’s not enforced?

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