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Seven Greek islands added to England quarantine list

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The Government announced this afternoon that anyone returning to England from seven Greek islands will need to quarantine for 14 days.

The seven islands are:

  • Lesvos
  • Tinos
  • Serifos
  • Mykonos
  • Crete
  • Santorini
  • Zakynthos / Zante

The quarantine requirement will kick in from 4am on Wednesday morning.   This is a marked change from previous announcements which had always kicked in from 4am on Saturday.

Santorini added to UK quarantine list

This is, I think, the first time that a particular region instead of an entire country has been placed on the quarantine list.

The islands, but not the mainland, will also be added to the Foreign Office ‘do not travel’ list (click here). This is usually the trigger for being to abandon your holiday plans and make a successful travel insurance claim.

The official ‘travel corridor’ list – which has not been updated at the time of publication – is on this page of the Government website.

Comments (45)

  • BP says:

    Quarantine is a bit of a joke. Returned to Edinburgh from Portugal yesterday and nobody checked that anyone from the entire plane load of people had completed the quarantine form.

    Don’t fill out the form and nobody will then check you are self-isolating.

    • Nick_C says:

      Unless you are living in Wales or Scotland, you don’t currently need to self isolating if returning from Portugal (if you didn’t also visit other countries in the previous 14 days).

      If you don’t fill out the form, you are committing a criminal offence. Perhaps you are fine with that, but most of us try to comply with the law.

    • The Savage Squirrel says:

      My neighbour is away. Nobody is phoning or monitoring me to check I am not committing minor (but antisocial) criminal offences such as vandalising their property. 99.99% of all laws and regulations in force in the UK rely largely on volountary compliance in the interests of looking after each other; not sure why this one is expected to be different?

    • Mark says:

      I suspect Border Force has now managed to link the checks with passport verification. When we travelled back from Spain on the 13th July none of the e-Gates were open at Heathrow T5 and Border Force personnel were checking everyone’s locator confirmation PDFs. On returning from Greece yesterday, the e-Gates were open and no-one looked at the PLF paperwork, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it would have let us through has we not completed one.

  • Darren says:

    Could this open up Spanish islands? Regions in a country would be more difficult to differentiate, although this could be a positive step.

    • MadeUpName says:

      Hope so. Whilst it’s negative in the short term (more quarantine locations) hopefully it opens up more places in the long run compared to the blanket approach.

    • Waddle says:

      Yes. The Government says they can’t enforce quarantine rules by different regions of a country however they can when it comes to islands – hence this new rule. I suspect we will see different quarantine rules for places like Madeira vs Portugal, Fuetuventura vs Spain etc.

      • TGLoyalty says:

        They can’t enforce them regardless.

        They are already relying on people’s goodwill so what difference does it make?

        • GeorgeJ says:

          This is all about goodwill (as you call it) or doing what is expected. I have just travelled Through the Netherlands (transit rules), Germany, Greece, Germany again and Austria and the only country which required any details filed was Greece (which has a pretty good online system, similar to the UK – which was checked on entry).
          The only official intervention was in Greece checking my authorisation to travel.
          Most of Europe has very little process in place to enforce the rules. The numpties will ignore and others will obey.

    • BJ says:

      Open this week, close next week, another mac scramble…

      • Lady London says:

        I thought someone said the announcement is made on a Thursday? Today’s Monday. Have we even got bingo rules for whatever day quarantine and de-quarantine is announced though? This is really stressful and it’s killing the airlines.

    • Anna says:

      They said it’s theoretically possible but at the moment the infection rate in the Balearics and Canaries is still too high. I was reading that there’s now a lockdown on El Hierro in the Canaries, which has relatively few tourists compared with Tenerife et.c.

      • Anna says:

        Last time we were in Tenerife we went up Mt Teide and could see an underwater volcano erupting just off El Hierro. People don’t realise how awesome this region is!

        • Phillip says:

          I’d say that’s true of many places who may have a reputation at a particular location but scratch the surface and there’s a lot more to discover!

        • Oh! Matron! says:

          I did Teide a couple of years ago: Standing on the top at sunrise, with a 60km wind, at -5C, warming my feet in a fumerole, was one of the most exciting things I’ve ever done.

          Avoid the south of the island: It’s a desert full of daily mail readers. The north of the island is truly spectacular, lush, with beautiful towns like La Orotava, and places like Masca gorge (technically west)

      • Doreen says:

        El Hierro has joined Gran Canaria & Lanzarote in “Special Measures”: not a lockdown per se, just tighter regulations re gatherings/events (max 10 persons), restaurants must close at 22.00 etc. Tenerife faring better, restaurants open till midnight, but many hotels shutting doors once again since German market closed. Belgium has exempted tourists returning from Tenerife from need to quarantine.

  • Lady London says:

    Has any country actually been dropped OFF the quarantine list yet?

  • Mike P says:

    Feeling some what fortunate I got back from Santorini on Saturday now!

    • Tariq says:

      I’m planning to go 5th October – fingers crossed this gets it out of the way and it’ll be off the quarantine list by then.

    • Mark says:

      I landed at Heathrow from Santorini this afternoon, just as the change was announced. I have to say I’m really surprised given the very low number of cases that haven confirmed on the island. I’d be very interested in seeing the stats that have been used to arrive at that decision…. Great time to go if you can as even before today’s announcement it was missing the crowds that have in some ways become a curse in recent years.

  • Doug says:

    Just landed from Crete last evening, it was so nice, proper food, 26-33C, some culture 😀 Since I’m educated I will self-isolate myself as I was in proximity of much more people than my usual outings in Surrey. Shame the usual brits don’t care, but rather rush against the deadline…

    • Alex W says:

      Bravo. Shame most Brits abroad would rather scramble onto any available transport in a desperate attempt to get across the channel. Hang on a minute…

  • Char Char says:

    Do you think that BA flights to Crete will be cancelled now?

  • Ian says:

    Off topic but I wonder if anyone can help?

    My brother and sister in law are visiting the UK from Australia. But they are hoping to return. They have already been refused permission to board once on a pre-booked flight with Qatar as the Australian govt limited entry to the country on that date and they did not make the cut. They have rebooked with Etihad for Tuesday 29 September but have an additional problem.

    They now require a PAPER certificate to say they are Covid free. The test must be taken 72 to 96 hours before they fly. They are staying in the North East but cannot find a local testing location that will issue a paper certificate within their timescale. Having a test on say Friday 25 Sept means it is unlikely that a certificate that is mailed will reach them before they set off for Heathrow on probably 28 Sept.

    Does anyone know of a way around this? Or know where to go for an answer. Must they travel early to London and look for a private clinic there?

    • Hardpack says:

      I used citydoc, they emailed a pdf and I printed it off myself. Would that work?

    • John says:

      Maybe this just means printed (ie a travel certificate) as opposed to posted? As taking the test and having the results posted to you all within 72 hours can be a stretch.
      These lot worked for me; they issued a certificate declaring my status (slightly more official than a text from the NHS). Admittedly no northeast locations (sorry).

    • Lady London says:

      I will bet Trailfinders Medical Clinic will be doing it if it’s open. in Earls Court same Tube line as Heathrow.

      There also used to be a MASTA clinic near Carnaby Street off Regent Street so also near the Piccadilly Line (but that’s from my much older info so might not be anymore)

    • Lady London says:

      @Harry T any loxal knowledge as they are North East?

      • Blenz101 says:

        The rules for certificates are test results within 96 hours for the UAE. NHS printouts are acceptable. This means a printout of the QR code with the appointment and a printout of the emailed negative result.

        Any private testing facility is that can email the results back will be accepted. What won’t be accepted is an SMS with the result as presumably this could be open to fraud.

        Presumably if so minded the airline could take the printout and verify they are genuine with the issuer before anyone suggests an email could be equally faked.

        Just call the airline, they have hundreds of returning residents who are going through this and will be able to confirm and suggest testing centres.

    • Andre says:

      If they fly with Etihad they can get the test done at Boots, it has to be booked through the airline though. No point turning up in a shop and asking for a test.

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