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COVID19: Agonising wait for Cyprus entry to UK green list

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As COVID-19 cases remain stubbornly high, Cyprus could miss out on being named on the UK’s ‘green list’ to be unveiled on Friday, allowing quarantine-free travel from May 17.

Being on the green list would boost Cyprus holiday bookings from the UK.

Even though Cyprus allows entry to vaccinated UK tourists without restriction and removed quarantine for its biggest market, the problem is when British tourists return home.

However, only a limited number of countries are expected to be on the green list this month.

Malta and Gibraltar, along with Iceland, Israel and Finland, are expected to make the cut due to low cases and high vaccine rollouts.

Portugal is also close to turning green.

According to reports, Cyprus could miss out on the green list with most of Europe due to the Covid situation in the country.

A spike in cases last month saw daily cases hit highs of 927, the highest for Cyprus since the pandemic began.

Just over 20% of the population have received their first vaccine dose, compared to 51% in the UK.

Due to these stats, Cyprus is likely to be placed in the amber list of countries which means returning UK visitors must quarantine at home for 10 days on arrival and take three tests – one before arrival and two after.

British holidaymakers are keen to book trips this week after endless months of lockdown.

Mainland Greece and Spain, along with France and the US, are expected to miss out on the green list initially but could be added by June.

Cyprus is also hoping to be added from June if cases continue to fall, as the vaccine rollout gathers speed.

The island has already said they will welcome Britons back from May 10, when the lockdown is scheduled to be lifted.

The UK Foreign Office has removed its travel warnings for some Greek and Spanish islands – suggesting they could soon be welcoming back British tourists.

Corfu, Crete, Kos, Rhodes, and Zante, along with the Canary Islands in Spain, have all had their travel advice changed on the Foreign Office website.

Cyprus has registered 67,420 COVID-19 infections and 326 deaths in the past 14 months.