Latest Foreign Office travel advice for Mediterranean islands in Spain, Greece & Portugal

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The Foreign, Commonwealth and Departmental Office updates their advice for Britons looking for a holiday on a regular basis. From entry requirements to coronavirus rules, Britons have a lot to look out for when they book their next holiday. Sadly, this year many winter sun hotspots are now effectively out of bounds to Britons due to being on the UK’s quarantine list. For those looking to book a winter holiday, this is the latest Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) office for islands in Portugal, Greece and Spain.

Spain

Spain is currently on the quarantine list and the FCDO is advising against all non-essential travel to the country.

Those who still wish to travel to Spain must provide the Spanish Ministry of Health with mandatory contact information and any history of exposure to COVID-19 48 hours prior to travel, take a temperature check and undergo a visual assessment.

Many municipalities across Spain are affected by entry and exit restrictions due to the recent coronavirus spike across the country, it’s worth checking local measures before visiting the country.

On October 9, the Spanish government declared a State of Emergency in the region of Madrid and has imposed entry and exit restrictions to the municipality of central Madrid and surrounding areas.

This is expected to be in place for 15 days with some exemptions.

However, entry for tourism purposes is not currently permitted and should be avoided, according to the FCDO website.

Canary & Balearic Islands

Unfortunately, the FCDO’s advises against all non-essential travel to Spain, including the Balearic and Canary Islands, based on the current assessment of COVID-19 risks in the country.

The islands are home to Ibiza, Mallorca, Lanzarote, Gran Canaria and more.

The FCDO is advising travellers to follow the advice of the local authorities on how best to protect themselves and others which includes any measures that they bring in to control the virus.

Travellers should be aware that there are rules in place for wearing masks, like in the UK.

The use of face coverings is mandatory for anyone over the age of six on all forms of public transport in Spain and in many other indoor and outdoor public spaces.

Most regions in Spain have now made the use of face masks obligatory in both indoor and outdoor public spaces, even when social distancing is observed.

Anyone caught not complying with the rules could face penalties.

Travellers should carry a face mask with them and be prepared to wear it.

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Portugal

The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) is advising against all but essential travel to mainland Portugal.

The country was also removed from the travel corridor list over the summer after recording a spike in coronavirus cases.

On arrival in mainland Portugal you will be subject to health screening.

Madeira

The autonomous regions of Madeira and the Azores, are exempt from the FCDO advice against all non-essential international travel.

However, entry requirements apply depending on where you are going.

Before you arrive in Madeira and Porto Santo you must complete and submit a traveller questionnaire 12 to 48 hours before departure.

Travellers must also take a COVID-19 test 72 hours before they travel and upload their test result.

On arrival, travellers will also be be subject to health screening.

The FCDO website adds: “If you have not uploaded your COVID-19 test result, you will be asked to show it at the airport.

“If you do not have proof of a COVID-19 test, you can take a test at the airport but remember you will have to self-isolate at your accommodation until you receive your test results.

“If you test positive, you will have to repeat the test at weekly intervals until the result is negative.”

The Azores

Before travelling to the Azores, travellers must complete a passenger questionnaire and take a COVID-19 test 72 hours before they travel and upload their test result.

After completing the form, travellers will receive a code for presentation to the health authorities on arrival.

Travellers will also be subject to a health screening with those who have not completed the passenger questionnaire online, being asked to fill in a from manually at the airport.

Travellers will also be asked to show proof of a negative coronavirus test.

Those without proof of a test will be able to take a test at the airport, however, they will have to self-isolate at their accommodation until they receive the test results.

If a person tests positive, they will have to repeat the test at weekly intervals until the result is negative.

Travellers staying more than seven days will have to repeat the test locally six days after the first test.

Greece

Mainland Greece and many Greek islands are now on the UK’s travel corridor list.

The FCDO says mainland Greece and some Greek islands are exempt from the FCDO’s advice against all non-essential international travel.

Those returning from any part of Greece to Scotland will need to self-isolate for 14 days on their return.

Those travelling to Greece, will need to complete a Passenger Locator Form (PLF) at least 24 hours before travel.

Failure to do so in advance may result airlines not allowing people to travel, a €500 fine on arrival or the Greek authorities not allowing travellers to enter the country.

Every travellers must have their details included on the PLF.

Those travelling with others outside their household, should all complete their own form.

People travelling together as a household, the Greek authorities is asking them to complete one form with all adults and children included.

Travellers can add additional members of their household at the top of the form before they submit it.

Some airlines may require individual PLFs for every traveller over the age of 18 within the same household.

Travellers should check directly with their airline what they will need to show in order to board.

The FCDO added: “When you arrive in Greece, the Greek authorities will scan your QR code and may require you to undergo testing for coronavirus, as part of health screening.

“The Greek authorities’ instructions will differ according to whether you arrive by land, sea or air.

“Any passenger entering Greece may be asked to undergo a test, but you are more likely to be asked if you have arrived from a country outside of the EU (including the UK), either directly or via indirect flights.”

If you take a test on arrival, the Greek authorities will contact you if you test positive and tell you whether you need to self isolate or quarantine.

You are likely to be asked to self-isolate for 14 days.

Depending on the nature of your accommodation, you may be asked to move to a government-provided accommodation.

The Greek authorities will pay for the new accommodation and transfer costs.

See below for information regarding specific islands.

Greek Islands (Santorini, Rhodes, Zakynthos, Lesvos, Milos (Serifos), Tinos, Paros and Antiparos)

Santorini, Rhodes, Zakynthos, Lesvos, Milos (Serifos), Tinos, Paros and Antiparos are exempt from the FCDO’s advice against all non-essential international travel and is on the UK’s travel corridor list.

The Welsh Government has also lifted the requirement to self-isolate for those returning to Wales from Paros and Antiparos.

Those returning to Wales, England and Northern Ireland from Santorini, Rhodes, Zakynthos, Lesvos, Milos (Serifos), Tinos, Paros and Antiparos will not need to self-isolate for 14 days.

However, those returning to Scotland from all these islands will need to self-isolate for 14 days.

Crete and Mykonos

The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) continues to advise against all but essential travel to the islands of Mykonos and Crete.

If you are returning to England, Northern Ireland or Wales from Mykonos or Crete you will need to self-isolate for 14 days on your return.

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