Croatia could be added to UK's quarantine 'red list' today after cases surge
The government is set to add Croatia to its travel quarantine list today, giving tens of thousands of Britons just over 24 hours to get home, according to reports.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps is expected to add the popular holiday destination to the UK’s ‘red list’, meaning all Britons who travel to the country will have to self-isolate for 14 days upon return.
The move would give British holidaymakers only 30 hours to get back to the UK to avoid the quarantine period, The Telegraph reports.
The Balkan country has seen a surge in coronavirus cases in recent days, sparking safety concerns among British ministers. Croatia saw 219 fresh cases on Wednesday alone, while its seven-day average has risen to 27.4 cases per 100,000 people – above the UK government’s threshold of 20.
Some recent coronavirus cases detected in the UK are also understood to have been imported from Croatia, although it is not known how many have been identified or where they are in the country.
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However, it is understood that the number of imported cases is similar to the amount which came from Spain when it was also removed from the exemptions list with just a few hours’ notice, according to The Guardian.
The news comes after France, the Netherlands, Monaco, Malta, Aruba and Turks and Caicos were added to No 10’s quarantine list on Saturday – leaving travellers scrambling to book tickets to get home. Passengers were given just over 24 hours’ notice.
Just days before, Belgium, Andorra and The Bahamas were also put on the so-called red list.
Chief executive of the PC Agency travel consultancy, said ‘I think Croatia realised its case numbers were rising sharply so cannot be surprised. It’s another country on the quarantine list which is not good for the UK economy.
‘It means people returning will have to quarantine which means they cannot work. Half of the country cannot work from home.
‘It is why testing of arrivals to the UK for coronavirus is needed to allow quarantine-free travel for those who prove to be negative for the disease.’
His comments come as Heathrow Airport unveiled its new Covid-19 testing facility which would allow travellers to come out of quarantine early.
The system, which is currently under development, would allow arriving passengers to book swab tests and have their results sent to them within seven hours.
They can then do a second test at home and will be able to leave quarantine if both come back negative – but the airport still needs the government’s approval before the programme can launch.
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