Holidays: Latest FCDO advice for France, Germany, Portugal & Egypt as restrictions toughen

Heathrow boss welcomes plans to test travellers entering UK

Holidays have become increasingly complicated over the course of the past year. The UK’s rules have become tougher but so have the restrictions of other countries. The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) regularly updates its travel advice.

Today the authority issued new guidance for holiday hotspots France, Germany, Portugal and Egypt.


France’s new update concerns what Britons must do on arrival in France.

Travel restrictions currently apply to all air, car, ferry and train passengers from the UK with only a few categories of people allowed in.

These travellers must make sure they meet French entry requirements.

“Arrivals from the UK will need to complete both a ‘sworn statement’ (déclaration sur l’honneur) form self-certifying they are not suffering from symptoms associated with coronavirus and have not been in contact with confirmed cases in the preceding fortnight, and a signed ‘travel certificate’ (attestation), confirming their reason for travel,” said the FCDO.

“These can be found on the French government’s website.”

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A negative PCR test for covid is also a requirement, carried out less than 72 hours before departure.

The FCDO added:” Passengers arriving in France from the UK will also be required to self-isolate for seven days on arrival, before taking another PCR test. Exit from this self-isolation period is subject to a negative test result.”


For Germany, the Foreign Office updated information on COVID-19 restrictions for public places and services.

A range of restrictions on social contact in Germany is in place until February 14, including the closure of non-essential shops, personal care service providers and schools.

Restaurants are allowed to provide a takeaway service, but the consumption of alcohol in public is banned.

Germany, like France, has banned arrivals from the UK. “The German government has restricted air and sea travel into the country at its external Schengen borders, except for travel from countries on its designated travel corridor list [which the UK is not on],” said the FCDO.

Anyone who does travel to Germany must present a negative COVID-19 test to border officials taken less than 48 hours before entry.


The FCDO updated information on lockdown measures, weekend travel restrictions and coronavirus testing on arrival for Portugal.

“Mainland Portugal is currently in a ‘state of emergency,’ said the Foreign Office. “The Portuguese government has put in place a series of measures to control the spread of the virus, including a national lockdown.

The FCDO added: “Until further notice, there is a ban on travelling between municipalities at the weekend from 8pm on Friday to 5am the following Monday morning. If you have to travel for essential purposes, such as to go to work or for medical treatment, be prepared to show evidence of the essential nature of your journey, if required to do so by the police.”

As for covid testing on entry, the authority stated: “All passengers, excluding children up to the age of two, travelling to Portugal must show a negative RT-PCR test result for SARS/COVID-19 at the time of boarding.

“The test must have been taken within 72 hours of departure. Your airline is likely to deny boarding if you cannot provide this at check-in. Check with your airline before you travel.

“Passengers who are in direct transit through Portugal do not require a COVID-19 test for Portugal. Check the entry requirements for your final destination.

“If your airline has exceptionally allowed you to travel without proof of a COVID-19 test, you will need to take the test on arrival at the airport. You will need to pay for the test and remain at the airport until you receive your test result.”


The FCDO updated information on adventure travel in Egypt.

“Before undertaking any adventure activity, make sure you are covered by your travel insurance,” said the Government.

“Make sure your travel insurance, or that of your tour or dive company, provides adequate cover for the costs involved in any air/sea rescue. The current fee can exceed US $4,000 per hour.

“The Egyptian authorities will only undertake air/sea rescue operations on receipt of a guarantee of payment.”

Anyone travelling to Egypt must show proof of a negative covid test conducted no more than 72 hours prior to flight departure.

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