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Where in the world can I travel to for skiing from the UK, during Coronavirus?

Due to the ongoing disruption to travel as a result of COVID 19 this blog has been suspended. Last updated 22nd Dec 2020.

Ski-Lifts’ Coronavirus Travel Update: this is a general, helpful coronavirus travel update, designed as a supportive article (and not definitive – stay up to date your local Government guidelines and news bureaus for the latest information). And don’t forget, when you book with Ski-Lifts, you’ll be covered by our group-wide Hassle-Free Covid-19 Guarantee. Please take a look at this page if you searching where to ski during the Coronavirus pandemic generally.

Where can I travel to, from the UK, without quarantine or isolating while I’m there?

The good news is that you will not need to quarantine on arrival, or return, to and from these countries. Colloquially known as ‘air bridges’, these places allow travel between them without any severe pandemic restrictions or delays, subject to any spur-of-the-moment government or airport restrictions. Some visitors are finding they have to take a test when they arrive – but if they are negative, they are free to roam. As you will see, the world is still fairly open. You should note carefully, however, that visiting these countries will not exempt you from changes in the rules or the UK asking you to quarantine upon your return.

Currently we understand that UK travellers can head to the following locations as Covid19-negative visitors, without needing to self-isolate or quarantine on arrival.

The team will update this list daily. List correct as of 26/10/2020 at 10:46 CET. As previously stated, you may need to self-isolate upon your return to the UK – but you will need to do that in your place of abode as there are no Government quarters or border locations specified for an official quarantine or self-declared self-isolation currently, unlike other countries that you may be visiting or transferring to who will have places for you to quarantine in. We will do our best to keep this page up to date.

FCO Non-essential ski travel / “air bridge” allowed: 1 country

Sweden – (Air bridge; currently no known forms or declarations required)

FCO Non-essential ski travel allowed but you will need to quarantine on arrival: 6 countries

These trips are insurable. However, the term “air bridge” here is a bit of a misnomer, as you will still need to quarantine or self isolate in these countries on your arrival and return:

Norway(Self-isolate for 10 days or more on arrival after declaring your details at Customs)

Germany (Air bridge only to low risk UK areas – high risk UK arrivals quarantined on arrival)

There are additional, currently less popular skiing countries in the ‘air bridge’ list where you actually still have to quarantine on arrival and return, and also be tested on arrival. These are Greenland, Iceland, Finland and the Faroe Islands.

  • Greenland asks that you have proof of a test within the last 5 days that is negative, fill out a tracer form, quarantine for 14 days on arrival and be open to being retested by Danish Police while in Greenland.
  • In Iceland, you will have to take a test on arrival OR quarantine in Iceland for 14 days, and register your details with Customs.
  • Finland has drastically reduced inbound flights, with entry restricted to residents, repatriation and family of Finland citizens only, following recent evidence a negative test, and to be open to a retest at Customs.
  • The Faroe Islands have the same rules in place as Greenland.

FCO Non-essential travel is advised against, may not be fully insurable, but some flights are still available for travel from the UK: 8 countries 

Italy is currently under Emergency decree with most resorts closed.(You must negative within 72 hours of travel for CV19 and can prove it; also complete this form for Italy before you travel)

Liechtenstein (Borders managed by Switzerland) (Self-isolate for 10 days or more on arrival after declaring your details at Customs)

France (Self-isolate only on return to the UK, please continue to check the French Gov website)

Bulgaria(Self-isolate only on return to the UK)

Slovakia(Self-isolate only on return to the UK)

Poland – (Quarantine on arrival if you show symptoms or have been traced, otherwise self-isolate only on return to the UK)

It should also be noted that if the ski destination country is not a “air bridge” or travel corridor, (and your reasons for travel not be based on home residency needs, repatriation or key-worker status) – your trip will largely not be insurable by yourself or your tour operator, because it goes against FCO advice – so always check with your provider or insurer first. Some private brokers may be able to help. Any quarantine that you do have to fulfil (self-isolation can normally take place in your accommodation) will normally be a government-sponsored hotel or housing, but you should check before travel and always stay aware of any changes to your journey.

“Let’s see what is open, and let’s go?”

The ongoing Covid-19 travel updates makes planning for a holiday -for even visitors arriving at their destinations – extremely tricky. TL;DR: Italy and Sweden are still places you can book in to ski now. However, given that Tour Operators cannot organise travel if it goes against FCO advice, and that many insurance policies don’t cover travellers defying the non-essential travel bans, many are finding that they cannot plan around this. In addition, there is the arguably volatile nature of what are ever-changing border, quarantine and testing restrictions. However, you should look for an insurance broker or find private advice as some insurers as some may be able to cover you.

However, most ski resorts are open – it’s down to your the restrictions on either side of your intra-country travel.

And it is important be prepared: there are more forgiving parts of the world, but at the same time, there could well be other measures at any of these airport borders such as paper forms, health declaration requirements, and the legal requirement to take swab or blood test at any time. In some countries, these tests may occur twice to protect from a false positive result, which could potentially delay your journey. Also, most airports globally oblige passengers to wear face coverings or masks (so, naturally, it’s handy to have a few extra ski masks with you this year).

Remember, always check official Government guidance before you travel, stay up to date on your travel insurance, and stay alert to any guidance while you are travelling. As we know, some of these lists could change while you’re “in the air”. In addition, some countries may have nurses and inspectors who observe you on arrival, and if they believe you show symptoms, you may still be asked to quarantine for 14 days. Be sure to travel safe. 

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