All the countries on the Foreign Office’s updated list of ‘safe’ destinations

·2-min read
The UK government has continued to back its support for a 14-day quarantine on travellers from Spain (EPA)
The UK government has continued to back its support for a 14-day quarantine on travellers from Spain (EPA)

On 17 March, the Foreign Office (FCO) issued an unprecedented advisory: it warned against all non-essential international travel.

The advice was given in response to the coronavirus pandemic, which saw borders closed around the world and travellers stranded abroad.

It didn’t make leaving the UK illegal as such, but it did mean travel insurance was largely invalidated for those who went abroad against the advice.

Since then, the FCO has softened its rules, with certain countries deemed “low risk” put on an exemption list.

This list has evolved drastically since early July, with new destinations added and struck off as Covid-19 infection rates rose and fell around the world.

Recent high-profile removals include holiday hotspots such as Spain, France, the Netherlands, Malta, Austria and Croatia.

Destinations can be removed at the last-minute with little warning for travellers; the FCO says: “All our advice will remain under constant review to take into account the latest situation in each country.”

While these countries might be deemed ‘safe’, it’s worth remembering that quarantine restrictions may apply to British travellers returning from some of these destinations.

To complicate matters further, such measures may differ for holidaymakers returning to England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Check the full list here.

Here’s the full list of countries currently exempt from the FCO’s advice against ‘all but essential’ international travel:

Europe

Cyprus

Denmark

Estonia

Finland

Germany

Gibraltar

Greece (not including Lesvos, Tinos, Serifos, Mykonos, Crete, Santorini and Zakynthos)

Hungary

Iceland

Ireland

Italy

Latvia

Liechtenstein

Lithuania

Norway

Poland

Portugal

San Marino

Slovakia

Slovenia

Turkey

Antigua & Barbuda

Americas

Barbados

Bermuda

Canada

Cayman Islands

Cuba

Curaçao

Dominica

Falkland Islands

Grenada

Guadeloupe

Martinique

South Georgia & the South Sandwich Islands

St Kitts and Nevis

St Lucia

St Maarten

St Martin and St Barthélemy

St Pierre and Miquelon

St Vincent and The Grenadines

Asia-Pacific

Australia

British Indian Ocean Territory

Brunei

Cambodia

Cook Islands

Fiji

French Polynesia

Hong Kong

Japan

Laos

Macao

Malaysia

New Caledonia

New Zealand

Samoa

Singapore

South Korea

Sri Lanka

Taiwan

Thailand

Vietnam

Wallis and Futuna

Africa

Reunion

St Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha

Antarctica

British Antarctic Territory

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Employees can be forced to cancel holidays if they need to quarantine on return

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