Cyprus has become the first country to allow vaccinated travellers to avoid quarantine and negative coronavirus test restrictions. The island, which was removed from the UK’s travel corridor list in October, announced that the new rules will be in place from March 2021.
Transport minister Yiannis Karousos said all arrivals who can show they have had the vaccine will not have to show a negative coronavirus test on arrival. He said: “The amended action plan is expected to further boost the interest of airline companies to carry out additional flights to Cyprus, improve connectivity and increase passenger traffic.”
The announcement was part of a new four-tier system of green, orange, red and grey countries, determining different risks and entry requirements.
The UK is currently a category B country, which will become an orange tier in the new system. The current rules enforce a negative Covid test from all British arrivals, and the UK enforces a mandatory two-week quarantine restriction for anyone returning from the country.
Non-vaccinated travellers will still have to abide by the travel restrictions when visiting Cyprus. Cyprus will stop the entry restrictions of a negative coronavirus test for any travellers with the vaccine. It follows the announcement from Qantas that only vaccinated passengers will be able to board flights once it is rolled out on a large scale.
The vaccine, which will be rolled out in the UK to NHS staff and care homes from next week, has provided hope for the travel industry. However, other countries are yet to explain how a vaccine will change travel restrictions with many expected to continue to require negative tests or quarantines.