Update 25 July Spain
With immediate effect Spain - including the Balearic Islands and the Canary Islands has been removed from the exemption list and a 14 day period of quarantine is required for all arriving passengers in to the UK with effect from Sunday 26 July.
For the updated list of Countries that are exempt from the quarantine requirement please see: Updated List of Exempt countries
Update 24 July New countries added to Quarantine exemption list.
The government has added five new countries to the list of "travel corridors" - exempt from the 14-day England quarantine requirements.
Estonia, Latvia, Slovakia, Slovenia and St Vincent and the Grenadines have all been added to the list, with further additions or detractions occurring on a weekly basis going forward.
The 5 new countries have been added to the current list of destinations from which passengers do not need to self-isolate when arriving to England.
The changes, which will take effect in England from Tuesday 28 July, come as the government "urges passengers to continue to protect themselves when considering travelling abroad" by making sure they are up to date on the latest information - both at home and in their destination.
Starting 10 July, passengers returning, or visiting, from destinations with a "reduced risk" of re-importing coronavirus will no longer need to self-isolate on arrival.
Countries will be graded according to a traffic light system, announced on 26th June, with their status set to be based on their rate of coronavirus infection and other epidemiological factors.
The Foreign Office’s long-standing advisory against all non-essential travel worldwide will also be updated from Saturday 4th July to allow travel to exempted countries.
The Full list of countries is:
All passengers, bar a "small list" of exemptions, will still be required to provide contact information upon their arrival in the England. The UK’s devolved administrations – Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland – will set out their own exemptions.
The measures apply to all modes of international transport, including sea and rail links, as well as flights.
It follows the first three-week review of the government’s quarantine regime, which was enforced from 8th June.
"This is a welcome boost for the travel industry at such a critical time," said Paul Charles of the Quash Quarantine campaign group.
Countries expected to make the initial list of exemptions include most EU nations, as well as a number of British overseas territories and several Caribbean nations.
The Department for Transport (DfT) said while it did not expect exempted countries to impose self-isolation requirements on UK arrivals, removing the barrier to travel that has been the threat of either quarantine upon arrival in-destination or upon return to the UK (or both), the announcement did not guarantee reciprocity with all countries.
France, for instance, still has a 14-day quarantine on arrival requirement for those arriving from the UK.
Additionally, those who have visited or transited through non-exempt countries in the 14 days prior to their return will still have to self-isolate for a fortnight.
The DfT said the risk assessment had been conducted by the Joint Biosecurity Centre, in consultation with Public Health England and the chief medical officer; it took into account the prevalence of Covid-19 in each country, the rate of new infections, and the "potential trajectory" of the disease.
Exempted countries will be kept under constant review, and could be downgraded according to the government’s traffic light system if the situation in-destination worsens to the extent those returning to England pose a risk of spreading coronavirus.
With the FCO preparing to ease its global travel advice, those planning a holiday, or any overseas travel, are urged to check the status of their proposed destination at gov.uk to find out if there are any self-isolation requirements for their outbound or inbound journey.
"Passengers should also stay alert to any changes to local public health measures while they are travelling, including by subscribing to FCO travel advice updates," said the DfT.
"Today marks the next step in carefully reopening our great nation," said Shapps. "Whether you are a holidaymaker ready to travel abroad, or a business eager to open your doors again, this is good news for British people and great news for British businesses.
"The entire nation has worked tirelessly to get to this stage, therefore safety must remain our watch word and we will not hesitate to move quickly to protect ourselves if infection rates rise in countries we are reconnecting with.”
Charles added: "There are still several obstacles to be overcome, namely ensuring Scotland supports the planned changes, but this is a welcome boost for the travel industry at such a critical time.
"The traffic light system will bring clarity to holidaymakers and businesses wanting to travel overseas as well as to travel firms desperate for visibility on what they can offer for this summer and beyond.
"It is remarkably good news that the blanket quarantine restrictions are being lifted from 10 July, and that the changed FCO travel advice will mean we can plan to go away from tomorrow."
for the up to date
For the fully updated list please click here.