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COVID19: Malta, Norway move out of the red

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Malta and Norway are upgraded from red to orange while Iceland is removed from the green category in Cyprus’ revised COVID-19 safe travel list.

Cyprus has only six countries in the safer green zone after Iceland was removed with no EU countries represented.

Cyprus tweaked its COVID-19 safe travel list, upgrading Israel to the green category from orange and the UK to orange from red.

Israel is the nearest ‘green’ destination from where tourists are allowed to enter without needing a negative COVID test or self-isolating upon arrival.

The new country risk assessment comes into effect on 6 May.

Cyprus will also open its doors to vaccinated tourists, regardless of their country of origin, from 10 May, when the current lockdown is scheduled to be lifted.

The decision is to boost arrivals that plunged 86% last year.

The 65 countries Cyprus is opening up to are EU member states, the European Economic Area such as Norway and Iceland, Switzerland, Armenia and other third countries such as Bahrain, Canada, Egypt, Israel, Kuwait, the UAE, the UK, and the USA.

The UK is the Mediterranean Island’s largest tourist source as a third of arrivals (pre-pandemic) are Britons, while Israel is the third-largest market.

Tourism stakeholders are pinning their hopes on vaccinated tourists from these countries after the government agreed that vaccinated Israelis and Britons could enter without restriction regardless of category.

Under the newly introduced colour-coded system, there is no mandatory quarantine for tourists entering Cyprus.

GREEN

Under the new COVID assessment scheme, low-risk countries currently classified in the Green category are Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Saudi Arabia, and South Korea and now Israel.

Passengers arriving from these countries do not require to self-isolate or carry a negative coronavirus test.

ORANGE

Orange countries are those of higher risk than green.

Passengers must have undergone a PCR laboratory test within 72 hours before departure and have a certificate proving they tested negative for the virus.

EU member states 1) Portugal, 2) Finland, 3) Ireland 4) Malta

Schengen Area: 1) Iceland 2) Norway

Third countries: 1) China (including Hong Kong and Macau), 2) UK and 3) Thailand

Passengers from these countries can undergo the coronavirus test upon arrival at their own expense and remain in self-isolation pending the results if they are Cypriot citizens or residents

RED

This category includes countries of higher risk than orange.

Passengers coming from red category countries are required: a) to prove a negative PCR test carried out under 72 hours before departure, and b) undergo another PCR test upon arrival in Cyprus. The cost of the test is charged to the individual.

European Union: 1) Austria, 2) Belgium, 3) Bulgaria, 4) France, 5) Croatia, 6) Luxembourg, 7) Romania, 8) Spain, 9) Italy, 10) Greece, 11) Netherlands, 12) Hungary, 13) Poland, 14) Denmark, 15) Slovakia, 16) Slovenia, 17) Czech Republic, 18) Estonia, 19) Latvia, 20) Lithuania, 21) Sweden, 22) Germany

Small states: 1) Andorra, 2) Monaco, 3) Vatican City, 4) San Marino

Schengen Area: 1) Switzerland, 2) Liechtenstein

Third Countries: 1) Rwanda, 2) Russia, 3) United Arab Emirates, 4) Ukraine, 5) Jordan, 6) Lebanon, 7) Egypt, 8) Belarus, 9) Qatar, 10) Serbia, 11) the United States of America, 12) Armenia, 13) Georgia, 14) Bahrain

GREY

Arrivals are allowed entry after acquiring special permission, and only if they are Cypriot citizens or entitled to enter.

Passengers must undergo a coronavirus test under 72 hours before their trip and have a certificate they tested negative for Covid-19.

Grey category passengers must remain in self-isolation for 14 days or 10 if they choose to carry out another coronavirus PCR test with a negative result.