The Turkish embassy in London has spoken up the country’s chances of being reclassified as amber at a travel traffic light system update later this week, making holidays there much more likely
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Turkish officials have said the country will soon be off the travel red list as five other nations look set to go green.
On Thursday the UK government will announce its latest travel traffic light update.
The system determines which countries Brits can travel to and from and under what circumstances, with green list countries requiring a simple test upon return and red list ones 11 days in a quarantine hotel.
Coming back from an amber country does not require any isolation, so long as you’re double vaccinated and test negative for Covid either on day one or two of arriving back in the UK.
Poland, Bhutan, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Saudi Arabia are tipped to go on the green list, as reported by the Telegraph.
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One change that may be made this Thursday, when the government is expected to update the list, is to Turkey’s classification.
The country has been on the red list since May, meaning getaways to the holiday hotspot are all but out of reach for most Brits unwilling to spend more than £2,000 per person upon their return.
Turkey’s embassy in London has been bullish about a possible reclassification from red to amber this week.
“The scientific data on Covid-19 support our expectation that Turkey will be removed from the red list at the upcoming review,” the embassy said in a statement.
It cited figures from Our World In Data, which shows that the seven-day rolling average for new cases in Turkey is 232.46, while in the UK it is 464.76.
It also argued that Turkey has improved its genomic sequencing programme and had now fully vaccinated more than half of the population.
If the country is downgraded to amber it would be a huge boost to British tourists, who typically flock there in huge numbers each year.
In 2019 around 2.3million trips from the UK to Turkey were made, with many drawn by the country’s scorching weather, blue seas and holiday resorts.
There are several other destinations favoured by Brits which are not set to be downgraded, meaning holidays to them are still on.
They include Spain, France, Italy and Greece, all of which are on the amber list.
Those who aren’t double jabbed can travel to amber list countries but will need to self-isolate at home for 10 days, and take PCR tests on days two and eight.
On the other end of the spectrum, several other countries with worsening coronavirus figures could be placed on more restrictive lists.
Analysis by Paul Charles from travel consultancy The PC Agency has found that Croatia, Madeira and Israel could be at risk of going from green to amber.
Meanwhile, a number of Caribbean islands such as Anguilla, Antigua and the Turks and Caicos Islands could also be moved to amber.
Croatia and Madeira could be a huge blow for Brits as they have been two of the green list destinations that are not only open to UK tourists, but are welcoming both vaccinated and unvaccinated travellers.
Before you reach for you credit card and book a holiday, it is worth noting that changes to the travel traffic light system are hard to predict.
It is determined by the Joint Biosecurity centre, which looks at a variety of factors including variants in the country, coronavirus case and vaccine rates, how good that country is at genomic sequencing and how good the overall data in the country is.