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Travel news: Vaccine roll-out, easyJet fees and Cyprus waivers quarantine

Yachts parked in Ithaca Cyprus

Here’s what’s been happening in the world of travel since national lockdown ended and the skies reopened once again.

90 year old receives first vaccines in UK roll-out

Margaret Keenan became the first person in the UK to receive the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine on Tuesday 20 December. If everything goes to plan, a further 800,000 doses will be given to those most vulnerable – over 80s and front-line health workers – over the next few weeks.

There are fifty hospitals currently acting as vaccine ‘hubs’ across the UK. In coming weeks they will be supported by GP surgeries and community health centres as the vaccination programme is rolled out to the general public.

While there are still many ‘ifs’ surrounding trips in 2021, it is hoped that the vaccine will give holidaymakers the confidence to travel once again.

easyJet introduces hand luggage fee

As of 10 February, the budget airline will begin charging some customers for storing hand luggage in the overhead lockers. Holidaymakers travelling on the cheaper, standard fares will be restricted to one carry-on bag, which must fit beneath the seat in front of them.

Prices are said to start from £7.99, which also gives you the option to pick your seat prior to check-in.

Cyprus to waiver quarantine for vaccinated arrivals

The Mediterranean island of Cyprus will become the first country to waive Covid testing requirements for vaccinated arrivals. Starting in March, holidaymakers who have received a full Covid vaccine will not need to provide a negative test result or quarantine upon arrival. It is hoped that these new measures will help to boost air travel and tourism in Cyprus.

Business travellers and sports stars exempt from quarantine

Quarantine rules have been relaxed for ‘high-value’ business travellers, sports stars and professional performing artists arriving in England. The exemptions aim to boost international travel to help support the economy and protect jobs.

Travelling abroad over the festive period

If your Christmas plans include a trip abroad, we recommend taking a look at the FCDO’s travel tips.

  1. With different travel restrictions in place for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Island, be sure to check the rules and guidance in your area before you book a trip.
  2. The FCDO’s foreign travel checklist acts as a handy reminder for things you need to consider before, during and after travel.
  3. Familiarise yourself with any entry, screening and quarantine restrictions for the destination you’re planning on visiting.
  4. Sign up for travel advice email alerts and you’ll receive the latest travel updates for your holiday destination.
  5. Cover your trip with a good travel insurance policy and make sure you’re happy with the cover it provides.
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