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20 May 2022

Test-free travel: Where in the world you can have a holiday without the hassle (and expense) of a PCR

Test-free travel: Where in the world you can have a holiday without the hassle (and expense) of a PCR

During the last few months, as vaccination rates have risen, the biggest hurdle facing travellers has been costly tests and complicated paperwork, rather than fears about catching Covid.

Luckily those days could soon be over, with the news many destinations are relaxing restrictions.

From Friday, March 18, the UK authorities no longer require a passenger locator form – marking the removal of the last Covid-related travel restriction for fully vaccinated travellers.

But which other destinations are following suit? Here’s a list of places where you can holiday without the hassle of a PCR.

Gibraltar

Following the UK’s lead, this British Overseas Territory will drop the need for tests and passenger locator forms from March 18. Earlier in the month, rules around mask-wearing were also relaxed; face coverings are now only required at hospitals and elderly residential services.

France

Our neighbours across the Channel dropped the need for PCRs last month for fully vaccinated travellers, although it’s advisable to have proof of a booster shot, as many restaurants, bars and museums will ask to see this. You’ll also be asked to fill in a quick health declaration.

Croatia

It’s a game of numbers in this popular beach-hopping destination. Anyone fully vaccinated within 270 days, with the last dose received at least 14 days previously, can enter without a PCR. Boosters are essential, so make sure you have those too.

Spain

Brush off those castanets and click your heels, because vaccinated travellers to the national home of flamenco can be footloose once again. But while PCRs have been dropped, all arrivals must carry proof of a vaccination certificate and fill out a Spanish Health Form (spth.gob.es).

Malta

Flash your NHS Covid Travel Pass and it’s all systems go to enter this tiny Mediterranean island. It’s worth noting, however, that this is one of a few destinations where non-vaccinated travellers cannot enter (even with a PCR or quarantine).

Kenya

In time for one of nature’s greatest wildlife spectacles, the great wildebeest migration, this East African country has announced all fully vaccinated travellers can enter without a PCR. Before flying, travellers must upload their vaccine certificates to globalhaven.org and fill in a locator form at ears.health.go.ke.

UAE

They endured one of the strictest lockdowns, but it appears discipline has paid off. Confident Covid is under control, the UAE no longer asks fully vaccinated travellers to take a PCR. Children under 16 are also exempt in Abu Dhabi; under 12s in Dubai.

Seychelles

One of the first destinations to achieve high vaccination rates, this Indian Ocean paradise now welcomes fully vaccinated travellers without a PCR. Anyone over 18 will need two doses and a booster; 12 to 18-year-olds will only need two doses. Overnight curfews have also been lifted.

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