As more and more countries decide to ban flights from the UK due to fears surrounding to new virus variant, Norway and India have announced that they are to welcome flights from the UK once more.
Despite the EU calling for travel bans placed onto the UK to be lifted, few countries have heeded their words, so the decision by India and Norway is bound to be greeted warmly by the British government. Here are more details about the removal of the bans in India and Norway, and how they will affect British travelers.
India Removes Ban – What Travelers Should Know
India’s ban was announced on December 21st, coming into effect on December 23rd, and was a decision that saw flight operations between the two countries cancelled. Originally put into to place until December 31st, the ban was later extended until January 7th, as the Covid-19 situation in the UK continued to worsen.
However, tweeting on New Year’s Day, India’s Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri announced that the ban was to come to an end. Flight from India to the UK are to resume on January 6th, whilst flights from the UK headed to India will resume on January 8th. The schedule will initially be limited to 30 flights per week, split equally between British and India carriers, and is set to be reviewed on January 23rd.
In order to gain entry to India, passengers must submit a self-declaration form 72 hours before they are due to travel. A negative PCR-test for Covid-19 will also need to be submitted with the form to ensure travel. There is no mandatory quarantine in India, however individual states are free to introduce their own quarantine and isolation protocols as they see fit.
Norway Removes Travel Ban – Key Information For Travelers
Norway’s travel ban came into effect on December 21st and was implemented to prevent further spread of the UK’s more transmissible strain of Covid-19 in the country. However, the ban has been recently repealed, allowing flights from the UK to land in Norway as of 4 PM GMT, January 2nd.
Those who are hoping to fly to Norway must take a mandatory Covid-19 test upon arrival in the country, either immediately or within 24 hours. This applies not just to British travelers, but all travelers arriving from abroad. Norway’s Prime Minister Erna Solberg explained that should the new virus variant – which spreads 70% more easily – spread in Norway, it would lead to a full lockdown, so such measures have been taken in order to prevent this from happening.
Norway has been coping very well with the spread of Covid-19. Its 14-day cumulative total stands at 113.6 cases per 100,000, which is the fourth-lowest figure in Europe. As a whole, the country has had less than 50,000 cases.
How Will This Affect Travel?
Both Norway and India are popular travel destinations from British tourists. In 2019, almost 600,000 British tourists traveled between the UK and Norway, whilst more than a million Brits travel to India per year.
Whilst the current advice of the government is to not travel unless essential, the removal of the travel bans isn’t like to have a significant impact on travel between the countries in the short term. However, should the situation in the UK improve and the vaccine rollout go smoothly, the routes could become popular options once more.
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Disclaimer: Current travel rules and restrictions can change without notice. The decision to travel is ultimately your responsibility. Contact your consulate and/or local authorities to confirm your nationality’s entry and/or any changes to travel requirements before traveling. Travel Off Path does not endorse traveling against government advisories