Mid-term holidaymakers have been dealt another blow as France banned travelers from entering if they had been double-hit nine months or more ago.
It means Britons wanting to ski or city break in Paris for the mid-term break will need to get a booster if they received their second dose before May last year.
It comes as Spain is set to reject EU plans to accept Covid recovery certificates for arrivals in the UK which would have made it easier to enter the country.
Without a recent coup, France will effectively treat travelers as if they are unvaccinated and can only enter with a “compelling reason”.
It could be for compassionate reasons, like visiting a dying relative – but not for the holidays.
Brits wanting to ski or city breaks in Paris for the mid-term break will need to get a booster if they received their second dose before May last year (stock photo)
Yesterday Eurostar services warned customers of the move with immediate effect, writing: ‘If you had your full vaccination course 9 months or more ago AND you have not had a COVID vaccine booster -19, you must follow the rules for unvaccinated passengers to enter France’
Yesterday Eurostar services warned customers of the move with immediate effect, writing: ‘If you had your full vaccination course 9 months or more ago AND you have not had a COVID vaccine booster -19, you must follow the rules for unvaccinated passengers to enter France.’
Britain has yet to set a deadline for second jabs to expire for travel purposes.
But the need for a reminder to enjoy test-free returns in the UK could come into effect at the end of this month. Travel testing is being dropped for those fully vaccinated, which currently means two shots, on February 11.
Holidays in Spain are also under threat, with the country set to reject EU plans for people who have not been vaccinated or those who had only one dose would have been allowed to travel provided they had Covid discounts in the last 180 days.
Madrid authorities are set to reject the rule, which means anyone over the age of 12 who has not been fully bitten will be banned from crossing the border.
The rule will hit children hardest, as the NHS only started offering second shots to over-12s at the end of December.
Children who were infected with Covid after their first shot are also forced to wait 12 weeks before getting a second one.
Spain is set to reject EU plans that would have allowed tourists to use evidence of a previous Covid infection to travel (file image)
WHAT ARE THE NEW TRAVEL RULES?
What does the EU offer?
Under the EU plan, arrivals from outside the bloc would be allowed without needing to test or isolate provided they have been fully vaccinated within the past 270 days.
For people whose last vaccine was more than 270 days ago, proof of a booster vaccine would be necessary.
Evidence of a previous Covid infection would also be accepted, provided it occurred within the last 180 days.
But the rules are only guidelines – EU members are allowed to set their own border policies.
What did Spain say?
Spain is set to dismiss evidence of a previous Covid infection as a reason to skip border checks.
This means that all arrivals over the age of 12 will need to show proof that they have been fully vaccinated at least 14 days before travel, and no more than 270.
Those who were bitten more than 270 days ago should have a reminder.
The rules will mainly affect children in the UK, who only received a second hit from late December.
What did France say?
France has instead focused on ensuring travelers have had a recent hit.
The country has banned visitors from entering if they received a double whammy nine months or more ago, or if they don’t have a booster shot.
Due to the deployment of vaccines across the world, it is highly unlikely that a visitor could have received a booster more than nine months ago.
Anyone who does not meet the criteria will be treated as if they were not vaccinated and can only enter with a “compelling reason”, such as a visit from a dying relative.
They then have to wait another two weeks after the second vaccine for it to be valid for travel – meaning some may not be able to get their shots in time for the holidays, which start in just under two weeks.
From tomorrow, children will be able to use the NHS app to view their vaccination and infection history.
Spanish tourism officials are also set to reject plans to allow recovery certificates for adults, according to The temperature.
This means that adults will also need to show proof of full vaccination to cross the border.
If their last dose was given more than 270 days before travel, they must provide proof of a booster shot.
The rules will have less of an impact on adults, however, as they have been eligible for booster shots for months. Around 55% of the total UK population have received reminders.
The news that Spain is maintaining its strict border rules will be a blow to the travel industry, which has suffered two years of outright bans and shifting restrictions in a bid to slow the spread of Covid.
Spain is one of the most popular destinations for Britons on holiday, with tourists spending billions each year on travel in pre-pandemic times.
The Spanish Tourist Board in the UK said: “Spain is in discussions with the EU and its partners on a possible revision of the entry requirements for tourists from third countries with a view to relaxing the current measures. “. The situation may change in the near future.
In a sign that the global Covid recovery is far from over, two of London’s main low-cost airlines revealed on Wednesday that the number of passengers they carried had fallen in January.
Even compared to December when Omicron hit, airlines said they lost 2.7 million passengers between them.
Ryanair was the most affected in January compared to the previous month. The number of passengers it carried dropped by 26%, from 9.5 million to just 7 million.
Meanwhile, Wizz Air saw its passenger figures drop 9% to 2.4 million.
The data sheds new light on the difficult situation facing airlines.
Governments imposed restrictions on international travel early on in an effort to slow the spread of the virus across borders.
But investors are now hoping airlines can move beyond Covid.
Both companies’ share price has recovered and is now trading near or above its pre-pandemic level.
Under Spanish rules, all arrivals over the age of 12 will be required to prove they are fully vaccinated with the second vaccine given no more than 270 days ago (pictured, current EU infection rates relative to population)
It’s a different story at rival IAG, owner of British Airways.
Investors are clearly worried about the company and its stock price is nearly two-thirds lower than before the pandemic.
Wednesday’s figures are cause for celebration for the two low-cost airlines.
Wizz Air has shown it has more than quadrupled the number of passengers it carries compared to January 2021 – but it still lags behind its figures from a year earlier.
Ryanair took an even bigger leap, increasing its passenger numbers fivefold.
He made 46,000 flights in January and his planes were 79% full. Wizz Air’s so-called load factor was 79.6%.