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Norway Lifts Ban on Flights from UK

The Scandinavian country lifts its ban at the weekend, but most other ski nations are keeping their bans in place. We look at the situation in the alpine nations, though lockdown restrictions mean overseas travel is not allowed for most people in the UK.

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Flights will be allowed from 4pm on January 2nd.

Norway stopped travel from the UK on December 21st after news that a new variant of the coronavirus was rapidly spreading.

People arriving in Norway will need to fill out a travel registration form and they must take a Covid-19 test when entering the country at one of its border test stations, either upon arrival or within 24-hours.

Those who don’t have a place of residence in Norway must stay in a quarantine hotel for 10- days.

“We are now doubly worried about import infection,” said the Norwegian Prime Minister, Erna Solberg.

“We are both concerned about outbreaks of new mutated virus variants that may be more contagious, and that many will return to Norway after Christmas from countries with far higher levels of infection than we have here.

“If this mutation were to spread in Norway, it would probably require a full closure of society,” she added.

The new variant of the coronavirus is up to 70% more contagious than other strains.

Ski resorts in the country are open with Covid-19 protection measures in place.

Geilo, Norway

Geilo, Norway

However there are restrictions in the UK for any foreign travel for much of the population, so it is all rather academic.

Those people in Tier 4 areas in England are not permitted to travel abroad apart from limited exceptions, and skiing or snowboarding is not one of them.

PlanetSKI in Norway

PlanetSKI in Norway in happier times

Other ski nations in Europe have kept their restrictions on travel from the UK since the new strain of coronavirus was discovered.

Significantly, because of the Covid pandemic, travellers from non-EU countries –  and that now includes the UK – will not be able to visit the EU and Schengen countries at the moment, except for a certain number of essential reasons.

Travel into Europe has changed significantly for UK citizens due to Brexit.

Changes for UK Travellers Heading to Europe from January 1st

Here is the current situation for those people who may be able to travel from the UK for essential reasons.

France

Restrictions for general travel apply to all air, car, ferry and train passengers and are in force at least until 6th January.

Only the following categories of people will be authorised to travel to France from the UK:

1.   French nationals and nationals of the European Area and their spouses and children.

2.   British and/or third country nationals who are either habitually resident in France, the European Union or the European Area, or who must travel for certain essential reasons.

3.   British or third country nationals travelling for certain exceptional reasons..

Italy

Travel to Italy is subject to entry restrictions.

The Italian government announced on 23rd December that flights between the UK and Italy could resume after the temporary pause.

However until 15th January, entry into Italy from the UK is only permitted for those with official residency in Italy OR those with absolute necessity, which must be declared in writing.

Until 6th January, those wishing to fly must present the airline with a negative COVID-19 rapid antigenic or molecular swab test taken no more than 72-hours before travel.

People must also take a COVID-19 rapid antigenic or molecular swab test on arrival in Italy – arrivals by air from the UK will take this test at the airport.

Whatever the result of the 2 swab tests, those arriving in Italy from the UK must also report to their local health authorities on arrival and must quarantine for 14 days

From 1st January 2021, UK nationals, resident in Italy by 31st December 2020, will need to show proof of residence when re-entering Italy.

This could include an identity card, a registration certificate or a utility bill in your name

Austria

A landing ban is in place for all flights from the UK to Austria until 10th January.

All travellers arriving in Austria from the UK must quarantine for 10-days upon arrival.

You have the option of taking a self-funded PCR or antigen test after 5-days.

If your result is negative, you will no longer need to stay in quarantine.

Switzerland

Travellers from the UK are not permitted to enter Switzerland.

However, there are limited exceptions and does not apply to UK nationals who hold a residence or cross-border permit for Switzerland

Travellers from the UK who have an exemption must quarantine for 10-days from arrival

Spain

Spain has been restricting passenger travel from the UK (by air and sea) from 22nd December with the exception of Spanish nationals and those legally resident in Spain.

The measures are in place until 19th January.

Here at PlanetSKI we will be updating this article as we receive further news, but for anyone who is able to travel you will need to check all the rules very carefully.

You will also need to be prepared for them to change and further restrictions to be put in place.

Flying to the Alps

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