Malta becomes latest tourist destination to impose more Covid rules over case numbers

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People swim at Blue Lagoon on July 11, 2021 in Comino, Malta (Getty Images)
People swim at Blue Lagoon on July 11, 2021 in Comino, Malta (Getty Images)

Malta is tightening its Covid restrictions from next week, the country’s government has announced.

The government said it would set an expiration date on its vaccination passes in the country, which is popular with British sun-seekers.

From January 17, Covid vaccine certificates will only be valid for three months from the second dose.

Those who have had a booster dose will have nine months until their vaccine certificate expires.

However, the move only affects Maltese residents. British tourists will still need to present proof of vaccination to enter the country.

The new rules will also mean that only those who are vaccinated can go to bars, restaurants, gyms, pools, cinemas and sporting events.

The International Airport of Malta said the new rules would make it harder for residents to travel compared to other EU states, reported the Times of Malta.

In a statement, the airport said: "We urge the health authorities to halt the introduction of further unnecessary and haphazard travel restrictions, which go against the spirit of the European Union to facilitate free movement across all European Member States."

It comes after the authorities in another popular Brit tourist destination, Tenerife, raised their Covid alert.

The island upgraded its Covid alert to “very high risk” on Monday after a surge of coronavirus cases.

The status means tougher measures in pubs, hotels, restaurants and on public transport including buses.

The rule of six now applies to social gatherings indoors and outdoors, unless they are living in the same household.

Covid passes are now also required for entry to establishments.

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