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Green list latest: NO new countries to be added and Portugal moved to amber list in holiday blow for millions of Brits

BRITS will see their summer holiday hopes dashed today with ministers set to add NO new countries to the green travel list.

The Government is poised to make the shock announcement that it isn’t opening up any more destinations for quarantine-free trips.

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No new countries will be added to the green list today in a major blow to holiday hopes
No new countries will be added to the green list today in a major blow to holiday hopesCredit: Alamy
Malta had been among the popular destinations hoping to make the cut
Malta had been among the popular destinations hoping to make the cutCredit: Getty

Instead extra places are expected to be included on the red list, meaning Brits will be officially banned from going there as of Monday.

And in a double whammy Portugal is being turned amber following an uptick in cases.

The move will spark chaos for holiday plans means there are now no major destinations on the green list.

It will come as a huge blow to desperate sun seekers and the battered travel industry.

There had been hopes favourite holiday hotspots including Malta and many Greek islands could be opened up for holidays.

Finland and Poland were also thought to be in line for the green list due to their low Covid rates.

The announcement comes after Boris Johnson warned he’d have “no hesitation” over yanking countries off the green list if necessary.

And in a blow to hols hopes the EU has left Britain off its new safe travel list due to fears over the spread of the Indian variant.

The news will come as a huge blow to the struggling travel industry
The news will come as a huge blow to the struggling travel industryCredit: Getty
There are now fears Portugal could be booted off the green list
There are now fears Portugal could be booted off the green listCredit: Getty

The PM said: “We are going to try and allow people to travel as I know many people want to, but we’ve got to be cautious.

“We’ve got to continue to put countries on the red list, on the amber list, when that is necessary.

“We will have no hesitation in moving countries from the green list to the amber list to the red list if we have to do so.

“The priority is to continue the vaccine rollout to protect the people of this country.”

Home office minister Victoria Atkins urged Brits to show “common sense” when travelling this summer.

She said: “We have to look at the data, at what is happening elsewhere in the world, to help advise the public as to what is allowed and not allowed.

“But as with anything, we’re asking the public to exercise their common sense and that is the way that we’re going to be able to return to normality.”

Ahead of the announcement holiday hotspot Cyprus had expressed hopes it would be added to the green list.

The island’s tourism minister Savvas Perdios said: “Cyprus absolutely deserves to be green-listed.

“We are one of the few countries in Europe that has been so open to the UK in terms of travelling.”

Travel expert Paul Charles insisted other popular destinations also “really deserve” to make the cut.

They include the Greek islands of Zante, Rhodes and Kos, the Caribbean islands of Grenada and Antigua, plus Malta and Finland.

He fumed: “This is a decision which will threaten tens of thousands of jobs in the aviation and travel sectors, not to mention further damage consumer confidence.

“The data shows several countries should be green so the Government’s decision beggars belief. Summer is being squeezed by a policy of fear.”

And experts predicted Bahrain, Costa Rica, Trinidad and Tobago, and Kuwait would be added onto the red hotel quarantine list.

People returning to the UK from green locations are not required to self-isolate, and only need to take one test after getting home.

Most countries, including popular hotspots such as Spain, France, Italy and Greece are on the amber list.

Everyone coming back from those areas must quarantine at home for 10 days and take two post-arrival tests.

Countries are graded on criteria including infection rates, reliability of data, and the presence of variants of concern.

Ability to identify new strains of the virus and the extent of vaccine rollout is also taken into account.

The announcement comes amid concerns the spread of the Indian variant could force the PM to push back the June 21 end of lockdown.

Boris yesterday insisted there’s “nothing in the data” yet to suggests the great reopening up will need to be paused.

But there are reports ministers are drawing up contingency plans for a two-week delay if the rate of new infections passes 5,000 a day.

A Whitehall source told the FT: “No one wants this to go on longer than necessary.

“But there’s a sense that everyone could live with an extra two weeks if it keeps the new strain under control.”

No 10 still holds out hope that the lightning rollout of the vaccine, which is effective against the Indian variant, will keep the roadmap on track.

A whopping 75% of adults across the UK have now had their first coronavirus jab, and half have received both doses.

Earlier today: CYPRUS is likely to be added to the green list this week, the country’s deputy tourism minister has said.

The UK government is expected to add more countries to the list on Thursday, allowing Brits head to more destinations abroad from June 7.

Brits heading to green list destinations, which currently only includes 12 countries including Portugal, do not have to quarantine when returning to the UK.

Cyprus’ Savvas Perdios told Telegraph Travel: “Cyprus absolutely deserves to be green-listed.

“We are one of the few countries in Europe that has been so open to the UK in terms of travelling.”

He also said: “We have guaranteed [since] April 1, that not only are flights not going to be stopped, but people are not going to be put in quarantine.” 

He added: “We have made a lot of progress, especially over the last month.”

Cyprus was one of the first countries in Europe to open to Brits who are fully vaccinated, or can show a negative Covid test, having welcomed UK tourists last month.

However, the country missed out on the initial green list, and remains on the amber list which requires a mandatory 10-day home quarantine as well as two extra Covid tests during the self-isolation period.

Most of Europe is on the amber list due to their Covid cases

In May, Cyprus was forced back into a two week lockdown after a spike in cases, and had the highest cases per million in Europe (499, compared to UK’s 31).

Yet the country has already seen falling cases, with 14-day infection rates at 36.95 per 100,000 people compared to the UK’s 34.5 and Portugal’s 35.58.

Yesterday, the country reported just 58 new daily cases, compared to a pandemic high of 941 in April.

Their vaccine rollout has also improved, with 44 per cent given their first jab.

To visit Cyprus right now, all arrivals must have a Cyprus Flight Pass, which must be filled in before arrival with details including a negative Covid test, a Covid vaccination or proof of Covid antibodies.

This can also be used to visit restaurants and bars in the resorts as there are still some Covid restrictions in place which include face masks outdoors, excluding beaches, although clubs are due to reopen from June 10.

If the UK’s situation improves, the country could be added to Cyprus’ own green list which will remove the need for a negative Covid test to enter.

Mr Perdios also said there was “no chance” of Cyprus banning UK travellers, unlike Germany and France who have stopped Brits due to the Indian variant.

Other destinations which hope to be on the green list this week could be the Spanish islands, Malta and Jamaica.

Original: https://www.thesun.co.uk/travel/15138380/cyprus-green-list-summer-holidays-june/

UPDATE: https://www.thesun.co.uk/travel/15149744/green-list-announcement-foreign-summer-holidays/