By Ron Howells •
Published: 05 Oct 2021 • 8:38
Costa del Sol expects flood of British tourists from this month
Thousands of double jabbed Brits are booking flights to return to the Costa del Sol in Spain, according to online travel agencies in the UK.
The change in travel rules to the UK came into force at 4:00 am Monday morning, October 4, the green and amber traffic system was replaced by a ‘rest of the world (ROW) category and the only requirement that remained is the hotel quarantine for inbound travellers for red list for countries.
The number of red list countries is expected to be reduced down to just nine later this week, with the likes of South Africa, Brazil and Mexico among the countries expected to be removed.
This makes international travel much simpler, lowering testing costs for people who qualify as fully vaccinated and is already proving to be a boost for travel and tourism between the UK and Spain a online bookings have soared in the past few days.
The two municipalities on Spain’s Costa del Sol with the largest number of Britons registered are Mijas and Marbella. Marbella, surprisingly, in the midst of the pandemic and with the uncertainty of Brexit, actually increased the number of British residents that appear in the local census by up to a thousand citizens.
The new simplified travel system also means that eligible fully vaccinated passengers and eligible under-18s returning from over 50 countries and territories not on the red list, can do so without needing to complete a pre-departure test (PDT), a day 8 test or enter a 10-day self-isolation period, making it easier for those travelling – whether that’s to see friends and family, or on business trips.
As announced last month, the new rules also mean that from later in October eligible fully vaccinated passengers with an approved vaccine and recognised certificate from a country not on the red list will be able to replace their day 2 test with a cheaper lateral flow test, reducing the cost of tests on arrival into England. The government aims to have this in place for when people return from half-term breaks.
Anyone testing positive will need to isolate and take a confirmatory PCR test, at no additional cost, which would be genomically sequenced to help identify new variants.
Transport Secretary for the UK Grant Shapps said:
“We are accelerating towards a future where travel continues to reopen safely and remains open for good, and today’s rule changes are good news for families, businesses and the travel sector.
“Our priority remains to protect public health but, with more than 8 in 10 people now fully vaccinated, we are able to take these steps to lower the cost of testing and help the sector to continue in its recovery.
“Also from today, under-18s from the over 50 countries whose vaccination status the UK recognises will not need to present a negative PDT before travelling to England. This applies regardless of their vaccination status.
“All under-11s, regardless of where they are travelling from, are already exempt from pre-departure testing for arrival in the UK. If children aged 11 and over are not travelling from one of the 50-plus countries and territories where vaccines are recognised, they will be required to follow the same rules as for unvaccinated passengers.
“From today, we are expanding our vaccinated policy to a further 18 countries, including the United Arab Emirates, Japan and Canada. The recognised vaccines are Pfizer BioNTech, Oxford AstraZeneca (including Covidshield), Moderna and Janssen (J&J).”
Andalucia recently removed Covid restrictions for almost half of the municipalities in the region there are at present at level 0 of risk.
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Ron actually started his working career as an Ophthalmic Technician- things changed when, during a band rehearsal, his amplifier blew up and he couldn’t get it fixed so he took a course at Birmingham University and ended up doing a degree course. He built up a chain of electronics stores and sold them as a franchise over 35 years ago. After five years touring the world Ron decided to move to Spain with his wife and son, a place they had visited over the years, and only bought the villa they live in because it has a guitar-shaped swimming pool!.
Playing the guitar since the age of 7, he can often be seen, (and heard!) at beach bars and clubs along the length of the coast. He has always been interested in the news and constantly thrives to present his articles in an interesting and engaging way.
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