British vacationers will be banned from entering European Union From January 1 under the current safety restrictions for Covid-19, the European Union Commission indicated that there would be no exception for the United Kingdom.
Only a few countries with low coronavirus rates are exempt from rules prohibiting non-essential visitors from outside the European Union and European Economic Area. (European Economic Area) – with UK inclusion only until the end Brixi Transitional period.
European Union member states agreed in October to adopt a European Council proposal to allow non-essential travel from a small group of countries with low levels of Covid cases, including Australia, New Zealand and South Korea.
A spokesperson for the European Union Commission said last week that there were no plans to extend that to the UK. “This is a decision the council has to make,” he said.
Within the European Economic Area, or Schengen-linked countries, Norway has also confirmed that it will block visitors from the UK from January 1, according to the Financial Times.
The impending British tourists’ situation in parentheses with tourists from non-EU countries such as Albania and Turkey underscores the potential impact of Brexit without a deal. In theory, member states of the European Union could override the recommendations of the European Council, if they so desired.
Leisure airlines including EasyJet have reported an increase in bookings for 2021 in recent weeks after news of a vaccine, but many of those flights will be in doubt.
A British government spokesman said: “We cannot comment on the decisions other countries can take on public health issues.
“We take a scientific risk-based approach to health measures at borders, and it is, of course, in the interest of all countries to allow safe international travel as we emerge from the pandemic.”
Under European rules, individuals can still enter the bloc in some cases, primarily for work – including aid workers, care workers, diplomats, health care professionals, military, seasonal farm workers and transport workers. Entry is also permitted for study, transit and for urgent family reasons.
The Department of State currently advises against non-essential travel to most countries EuropeSome holiday destinations such as some Greek islands are banned, and quarantine on return is required for those who choose to travel.
With most insurance policies voided by advice from the State Department – and with the end of the Ehic (European Health Insurance Card) mutual health insurance scheme on December 31 – UK travel industry sources said that outside bookings are currently very low for winter holidays in 2021.