Holidays: South Africa and Cuba open borders to Britons in winter sun getaways boost

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South Africa holidays are back on the cards as the country announced on Wednesday that all countries are now allowed to enter the destination. High-risk countries – of which the UK was one – had previously been banned from travelling to South Africa after the country opened its borders on October 1. However, entry restrictions do remain in place.

Tourists will need to produce proof of a negative coronavirus test before they can enter South Africa, stipulates the latest travel advice.

Paper evidence will need to be presented of a test taken no more than 72 hours before departure.

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa addressed the nation yesterday.

He discussed the “opening up international travel to all countries subject to the necessary health protocols.”

It’s hoped the news will provide an uplift to South Africa’s tourism industry and economy.

Ramaphosa said: “By utilising rapid tests and strict monitoring, we intend to limit the spread of the infection through importation by those who will be travelling to our country.

“We expect that those measures will greatly assist businesses, particularly in the tourism and hospitality sectors.

“The only way forward is a rapid and sustained economic recovery.”

There have been 742,294 confirmed cases of coronavirus in South Africa so far, according to John Hopkins University.

Meanwhile, the rate of new infections per 100,000 inhabitants in South Africa is 38, latest figures from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) show.

This contrasts to a rate of 474 in the UK, 12 times higher than South Africa.

Unfortunately, despite this, the UK continues to ban non-essential travel to the country.

In fact, all of Africa is on the quarantine list.

The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) deems the destination to pose an “unacceptably high risk” to British travellers.

“The FCDO advises against all but essential travel to the whole of South Africa based on the current assessment of COVID-19 risks,” stated the authority.

Another country opening up to the UK which is on the safe list is Cuba.

The Caribbean country previously restricted travel, with only limited points of entry open.

However, from November 15, Havana Airport will reopen to commercial and charter flights at midnight.

All other airports in Cuba are open again for international charter and commercial flights but to enter Cayo Coco, Cayo Cruz or Cayo Guillermo, tourists must arrive on international charter flights arriving directly into Jardines del Rey Airport.

Covid tests are demanded for entry. “All passengers will have a PCR test on arrival and must complete a Health Declaration Form with the address(es) of where they will be staying. You should expect to pay for the PCR test by credit card,” detailed the FCDO.

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