Greece hints that UK tourists will be allowed to visit holiday hotspots in less than a week

Ellen Manning
·2-min read
Sandy beach during a sunny day and Beach Bar at Nea Irakleia, Chalkidiki in Greece with the first beachgoers arriving for swimming and sunbathing. Halkidiki is famous for the golden sand, crystal clear transparent water and easy access to the beaches. Beachbars, hotels and organized beaches opened in Greece as Covid-19 Coronavirus pandemic lockdown measures lifted in Greece and the tourism industry is ready to relaunch since June 15 by opening the borders and receiving tourists.  June 22, 2020 (Photo by Nicolas Economou/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
The Greek tourism minister has suggested that Britons could be allowed back to holiday hotspots in less than a week. (Getty)

Brits could be welcomed back to holiday hotspots in Greece within a week, the country’s tourism minister has suggested.

Haris Theoharis said the country wants UK tourists to return when it opens to European holidaymakers on 1 July.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, he suggested that conversations with the UK government over so-called ‘air bridges’ were going well and he expected a final decision in the next few days.

Air bridges are hoped to help alleviate concerns from travel companies and airlines over the government’s 14-day quarantine rule, which they have branded “disproportionate and unfair” and warned will have a devastating effect on the UK’s aviation and tourism industries.

Theoharis told the programme that there was no need for those returning to the UK from Greece to be quarantined.

He said: “The point is that Greece is a safe country – we have proven that during this crisis and we will continue proving this in the exit stages of the health situation.

“We feel that the risk of someone contracting the disease in Greece is much lower than most of the countries in Europe and indeed the rest of the world.”

Read more: Patel defends quarantine plans as ‘essential’ for arrivals to the UK

The minister’s comments come amid reports that British tourists will be able to visit any one of about 10 countries without having to quarantine, thanks to air bridges and travel corridors.

According to some reports, air bridges with France, Spain, Italy and Turkey are close to being confirmed, alongside Greece, as part of plans set to be unveiled on Monday (June 29), with the first flights expected on 4 July.

Other countries are expected to include Germany, Austria, Belgium, the Netherlands, Gibraltar and Bermuda, with speculation suggesting Portugal could also be on the list despite concerns over recent coronavirus outbreaks in the popular destination.