Turkey issues update on PCR ‘testing requirements’ – latest travel advice

Boris Johnson says some foreign travel will ‘open up’ on May 17th

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Holidays to Turkey are on hold for now amid the UK’s current travel ban. Though UK arrivals are permitted into Turkey, in line with specific rules, travel for leisure purposes from the UK is banned until May 17.

One of these rules is a PCR testing requirement, however, the nation has recently amended regulations so that transmitting passengers may not require a PCR test.

Instead, this will only apply if they have been in a specific set of countries within the previous 14 days.

It is not clear whether or not Turkey will be granted “green” status under the UK “traffic light system” once travel resume.

Despite this, the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) keeps its travel advice pages updated for Britons who are currently travelling for permitted reasons or who are looking to travel in the future.

The latest FCDO update regarding PCR testing explains: “All arrivals into Turkey will be subject to a medical evaluation for symptoms of coronavirus, including temperature checks.

“All passengers from all points of departure to Turkey must have proof of a negative PCR test undertaken within 72 hours prior to departure to Turkey. Without evidence of such a test, passengers will be denied boarding.

“Passengers who are in direct transit through Turkey to other destinations do not require a negative PCR test unless their journey originated in India, Brazil or South Africa.

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“Passengers transiting Turkey from India, Brazil or South Africa will be required on boarding to show a negative PCR test result taken within 72 hours of departure to Turkey.”

Currently, UK citizens are permitted to enter Turkey and are not required to self-isolate.

The FCDO further explains: “Direct flights between UK and Turkey are currently operating. Before boarding, all passengers aged six years and above will be required to show a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours prior to departure.

“There is currently no requirement to self-isolate once in Turkey.

“All arrivals into Turkey, except Turkish citizens or residence permit holders, must complete an online form within 72 hours of travel.

“This is not required for those passengers transiting Turkey en route to another country.”

Though it is not yet clear which nations will be on the UK green list from May 17, travel experts have predicted Turkey will be categorised as “amber”.

This means holidaymakers will need to self-isolate at home for 14 days upon their arrival back in the UK.

They will be offered the option to shorten their self-isolation period with the “Test to Release” scheme.

Paul Charles, CEO of the PC Agency predicted which nations he believes will be classified as “green” and “amber” when the Government “announce their traffic lights on May 6 or 7”.

In a Twitter post, he predicted Turkey to remain in the “amber zone”.

However, he also suggested Malta, Jamaica, Portugal, Barbados, Israel, Morocco, Gibraltar and Grenada would make it onto the “green” list.

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