Lockdown-weary Brits desperate for some sun got a shot in the arm today when Cyprus announced it would open its doors in May to all those who had been vaccinated, although UK rules on foreign travel will still apply.
In a race against a faster-spreading variant of the deadly virus, nearly a million people in the UK have received two doses of a Covid-19 jab, and the Cypriot government said those who had both vaccines could travel without restrictions from May 1.
Cyprus’s deputy tourism minister Savvas Perdios said the country would allow Brits who had been given vaccines approved by the European Medicines Agency freedom to enter without the need for a negative test or to quarantine, reports HullLive.
Tourists would be required to have had their second dose at the latest seven days before travel, the minister added.
Sun-seeking Brits make up the largest group of visitors to the Cyprus, and made more than a million trips to the Mediterranean island in 2019, according to the Office for National Statistics.
However it may too early to dust off the suitcase just yet. As it stands, the date Cyprus has set to bring out the bunting for Brits is still more than two weeks before the very earliest date people in England will be able to jet off on holidays.
All non-essential travel abroad will still be banned for people in England at the beginning of May, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson saying the earliest Britons could go on holiday outside of the country is May 17.
This of course depends on the unpredictable journey of the coronavirus pandemic, which Chancellor Rishi Sunak warned yesterday ‘could change’ prompting fears the end of lockdown may be delayed.
The government is aiming to have all 32million people who fall into the top-nine priority categories vaccinated by April 15, before setting their sights on vaccinating everyone over the age of 18 by late July.