While the UK continues to change its travel corridor list, most recently removing the Canary Islands due to rising infection rates there (and allegedly leaving package holidaymakers such as Tui in a sticky situation), Brexit implications could actually see UK travellers barred from entry to the European Union (EU) from 1 January 2021, reports the BBC – pandemic restrictions could mean that UK travellers may only travel to the EU for essential purposes post 2020, when Brexit is due to come into effect once and for all. The impact this will have on tourism revenue may well mean that some regions dependent on tourism may make an exemption for British tourists, but this remains to be seen.
However, the UK has also just struck a deal with Switzerland that will allow business travellers to travel freely to Switzerland from 1 January 2021. How this will affect Covid-19 travel limitations is, as of yet, unclear, but it seems likely that quarantine-free travel could be on the cards as per that particular agreement.
Belgium has decided to reintroduce compulsory quarantining for travellers from high-risk countries. “From December 18, all travellers will still have to fill in the Passenger Locator Form (PLF), but people coming from a red zone will also be required to go into quarantine for ten days, with a test on day seven. If the test is negative, you can leave quarantine,” Head of the Interfederal Testing & Tracing Committee, Karine Moykens said. A large number of European countries remain a ‘red zone’ for Belgium.
Americans advised against travelling to Costa Rica
Over in the Americas, US travellers have been advised to ‘avoid all travel to Costa Rica’ due to Covid-19. “Travel may increase your chance of getting and spreading Covid-19,” the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a statement. This will no doubt impart a hard hit on the Costa Rican tourism economy, which regularly welcomes flocks of Americans – according to its local tourism board, in November, more than 24,000 people flew to Costa Rica from the US.
In Australia, Queensland is now planning to open boarders to New Zealand, allowing Kiwi travellers to travel to New South Wales and the Northern Territory without isolating; although they will still need to quarantine for two weeks upon their return to New Zealand.
Things open up in Australasia
Australian Politician Annastacia Palaszczuk reasoned that New Zealand would likely soon remove quarantine requirements on arrivals from Australia. “We are hoping that, eventually, New Zealanders will not have to do that hotel quarantine upon return, and then there would be free-flowing movement between the two,” she said.
And over in Indonesia, the sun and sand-washed beaches of Bali are calling out to international tourists as the UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) announces that the island is now safe and ready to welcome international visitors. UNWTO Asia and Pacific Director Harry Hwang, who led a delegation to Bali for an on-site assessment, said: “The standards and safety protocol, I found them excellent, if not the best there are.”
“I hope our collaboration with the government of Indonesia can be a good example that neighbouring countries, other countries in Asia, can learn [from].”