Travel latest news: UK quarantine-free travel list likely to shrink further as cases rise in Greece

More countries look set to be added to the UK’s ‘no-go’ list later today, with Denmark and Iceland both in the crosshairs. Figures from the European Centre for Disease Prevention show the Danish case rate has climbed to 56 per 100,000 people in seven days, while in Iceland it stands at 69 – both well above the Government’s ‘safe’ marker of 20 per 100,000. There are concerns that Greece may also be removed after the number of cases nationally rose above 20 earlier this week. While some Greek islands – including Mykonos and Santorini – are already on English and Welsh quarantine lists due to local outbreaks, the continued rise could be enough for both to take Scotland’s lead in imposing travel restrictions on the whole of Greece. Italy has also seen an increase in the number of new cases this week, and while the rate is still below 20 (it currently stands at 18), it is possible that Sardinia, which has a much higher case rate, could be placed on the no-go list while the rest of the country remains exempt. All changes to the UK’s list of travel corridors will be revealed at 5pm today by the Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps, during his weekly quarantine policy update. Scroll down for more updates. Auto update On Off 10:10AM Ryanair boss says winter holiday season is doomed Ryanair boss Michael O'Leary has once again slammed Boris John's ongoing handling of the pandemic and its devastating effect on the travel industry, reports Annabel Fenwick-Elliott. Demand is a mere tenth of its normal level for winter holidays in November and December, he reports, stating: "We have never seen such awkward forward bookings.” Speaking to ITV, O'Leary said: “The British government doesn’t have any competence, never mind confidence. “You know the example that we point to all the time is that the Italians and the Germans have been allowing flights, intra-EU air flights, since the first of July and have managed to keep their Covid case rates down around 20 per 100,000. “In the UK [...] the government is mismanaging the situation. They’ve limited the number of flights people can take and yet you’ve seen huge outbreaks." In a bid to boost limp sales, Europe’s biggest budget carrier has today launched a ‘buy one get one free’ offer for 24 hours on 1,600 routes for travel until December 14. 10:01AM Which countries will be removed from the quarantine-free list today? As a rule of thumb, the Government starts getting twitchy when a country's seven-day case rate exceeds 20 per 100,000, writes Oliver Smith. However, the UK's own case rate has now passed that threshold (as of September 24, it stands at 44.1), so it seems to be exercising a little more leniency. Denmark, Iceland and Ireland are the countries on the green list with the highest case rates (56, 69.3 and 39, respectively), so appear the most likely to face the chop. However, other factors come into play such as a country's population size, the number of Britons who visit, and other measures introduced to stop the spread of the virus. Iceland, for example, tests all overseas arrivals twice, with a five-day quarantine period in between. It is also a small country visited by relatively few Britons. These factors could keep it on the list of travel corridors. Given the complications posed by the Common Travel Area, Ireland may also be spared. The UK Government reviews its policy every Thursday, announcing changes on Twitter at 5pm, with destinations usually removed from 4am on a Saturday morning. 9:52AM Hospitality hits back at new 10pm curfew Business leaders in the hospitality industry are speaking out against the new anti-coronavirus restrictions that take effect today, requiring restaurant and bars in England to close at 10pm or risk being fined. Jeremy Goring, managing director at The Goring hotel in London, said: Nobody’s yet explained how an hour more or less spent sitting in a restaurant is going to make any difference to infection rates. It sure will make a difference to hospitality workers though, because this means yet more job losses on top of the million predicted already.  It’s so horribly sad, especially in an industry know as an enabler of social mobility and provider of opportunity for all.  We in UK hospitality are massively appreciative of how the government has assisted the sector, and as instructed,  everyone worked hard to space out bookings across the evenings so as to safely distance our guests. However this new directive seems to contradict that and some operators will now face stark choices: squeeze more tables in to survive, lay off more good people, or close down 9:37AM No holidays in Wales (unless you really want one) People in England can still holiday in Wales, but should also avoid all unnecessary travel, the Welsh First Minister  clarified at a press conference yesterday. Mark Drakeford confirmed the Welsh government is "not saying no holidays to people" as new safety measures come int

Travel latest news: UK quarantine-free travel list likely to shrink further as cases rise in Greece

More countries look set to be added to the UK’s ‘no-go’ list later today, with Denmark and Iceland both in the crosshairs.

Figures from the European Centre for Disease Prevention show the Danish case rate has climbed to 56 per 100,000 people in seven days, while in Iceland it stands at 69 – both well above the Government’s ‘safe’ marker of 20 per 100,000.

There are concerns that Greece may also be removed after the number of cases nationally rose above 20 earlier this week.

While some Greek islands – including Mykonos and Santorini – are already on English and Welsh quarantine lists due to local outbreaks, the continued rise could be enough for both to take Scotland’s lead in imposing travel restrictions on the whole of Greece.

Italy has also seen an increase in the number of new cases this week, and while the rate is still below 20 (it currently stands at 18), it is possible that Sardinia, which has a much higher case rate, could be placed on the no-go list while the rest of the country remains exempt.

All changes to the UK’s list of travel corridors will be revealed at 5pm today by the Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps, during his weekly quarantine policy update.

Scroll down for more updates.

Auto update

Ryanair boss says winter holiday season is doomed

Ryanair boss Michael O'Leary has once again slammed Boris John's ongoing handling of the pandemic and its devastating effect on the travel industry, reports Annabel Fenwick-Elliott.

Demand is a mere tenth of its normal level for winter holidays in November and December, he reports, stating: "We have never seen such awkward forward bookings.”

Speaking to ITV, O'Leary said: “The British government doesn’t have any competence, never mind confidence.

“You know the example that we point to all the time is that the Italians and the Germans have been allowing flights, intra-EU air flights, since the first of July and have managed to keep their Covid case rates down around 20 per 100,000.

“In the UK [...] the government is mismanaging the situation. They’ve limited the number of flights people can take and yet you’ve seen huge outbreaks."

In a bid to boost limp sales, Europe’s biggest budget carrier has today launched a ‘buy one get one free’ offer for 24 hours on 1,600 routes for travel until December 14.

Which countries will be removed from the quarantine-free list today?

As a rule of thumb, the Government starts getting twitchy when a country's seven-day case rate exceeds 20 per 100,000, writes Oliver Smith. However, the UK's own case rate has now passed that threshold (as of September 24, it stands at 44.1), so it seems to be exercising a little more leniency.

Denmark, Iceland and Ireland are the countries on the green list with the highest case rates (56, 69.3 and 39, respectively), so appear the most likely to face the chop. However, other factors come into play such as a country's population size, the number of Britons who visit, and other measures introduced to stop the spread of the virus. Iceland, for example, tests all overseas arrivals twice, with a five-day quarantine period in between. It is also a small country visited by relatively few Britons. These factors could keep it on the list of travel corridors.

Given the complications posed by the Common Travel Area, Ireland may also be spared.

The UK Government reviews its policy every Thursday, announcing changes on Twitter at 5pm, with destinations usually removed from 4am on a Saturday morning.

Hospitality hits back at new 10pm curfew

Business leaders in the hospitality industry are speaking out against the new anti-coronavirus restrictions that take effect today, requiring restaurant and bars in England to close at 10pm or risk being fined.

Jeremy Goring, managing director at The Goring hotel in London, said:

Nobody’s yet explained how an hour more or less spent sitting in a restaurant is going to make any difference to infection rates. It sure will make a difference to hospitality workers though, because this means yet more job losses on top of the million predicted already. 

It’s so horribly sad, especially in an industry know as an enabler of social mobility and provider of opportunity for all. 

We in UK hospitality are massively appreciative of how the government has assisted the sector, and as instructed,  everyone worked hard to space out bookings across the evenings so as to safely distance our guests. However this new directive seems to contradict that and some operators will now face stark choices: squeeze more tables in to survive, lay off more good people, or close down

No holidays in Wales (unless you really want one)

People in England can still holiday in Wales, but should also avoid all unnecessary travel, the Welsh First Minister  clarified at a press conference yesterday.

Mark Drakeford confirmed the Welsh government is "not saying no holidays to people" as new safety measures come into force today, requiring pubs and restaurants to stop serving alcohol at 10pm as Covid-19 infection rates continue to rise.

“If [journeys] are necessary you must make them. If they’re not necessary, please don’t travel unless you have to. That is the message here in Wales," he added.

Revealed: Which countries are 'red' in the EU's 'traffic light' travel rules

The EU is expected to roll out its 'traffic light system' for European travel next month: travellers in 'red' countries will be slapped with quarantine and testing restrictions, while those in 'amber' (at risk) and 'green' countries will be free to cross borders.

As things stand, this is how European countries have been categorised, according to data pooled by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) and travel consultancy The PC Agency.

It is understood the UK will not sign up to the new system, instead opting to assess and implement its own travel corridors and quarantine restrictions.

Were it to do so, however, Denmark, Iceland and Greece would definitely not be added to the quarantine list later today.

'Earth is 71 per cent water – we’re confident that cruise travel will persevere'

Speaking exclusively to Telegraph Travel, the president of Seabourn, Josh Leibowitz, has revealed some of the trials and tribulations of taking over a cruise line during a pandemic.

The favourite note I received when I took on the job was from a former partner of mine at [consulting firm] McKinsey, whom I hadn’t spoke to in a while, and it said ‘congratulations’ – the congratulations was followed by question mark and an exclamation point.Right now we are in an unusual mode where we have the opportunity to have everything on pause – everything is on pause – and revisit everything. What’s working, what would we change?I will tell you that the one thing [past passengers] emphasises, is that our guest experience is the number one experience in travel. That’s a strength that’s unmatched, so we’re going to stick with that strength and deliver extraordinary experiences.

Read the full interview.

Hong Kong to introduce stricter travel rules for 'high-risk' Britons

Hong Kong is set to add the UK to its list of high-risk countries, introducing stricter for Britons travelling into the region.

All travellers will have to show evidence of a negative PCR Covid-19 test before departure, and will then have to self-isolate in a hotel room for 14 days, according to the South China Morning Post.

Reports indicate that the new measures will come into force from October 1, and are a response to the UK's rising infection rate, which now stands at 44 per 100,000 people in the last seven days.

Hong Kong Credit: Getty

Could Greece be removed from the UK's 'green list'?

Greece recorded 453 new cases on September 21, its highest daily figure since May, and was removed from Scotland's travel "green list" recently. Furthermore, several islands, including Crete and Mykonos, have been removed from the quarantine-free lists of England and Wales.

However, deaths remain low and the mainland is unlikely to be removed from the UK-wide list any time soon.

Good morning!

Before we start, here's a reminder of yesterday's main travel headlines:

  • A lack of testing capacity could devastate winter holiday plans
  • Scots have been urged not to travel overseas next month
  • Self-catering holiday firms fear financial ruin and have accused the Government of cancelling Christmas
  • London business owners have warned that the curfew will be catastrophic for the city
  • One of the world's biggest cruise lines has been forced to sell two of its ships