WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Monday advised against travel to Germany and Denmark because of a rising number of COVID-19 cases in those countries.
The CDC raised its travel recommendation to “Level Four: Very High” for the two European countries, telling Americans they should avoid travel there.
The CDC separately lowered its COVID-19 travel advisory from Level Four to “Level Three: Low” for Israel, Aruba, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Curacao and Guadeloupe.
(Reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by Chris Reese)
EAGLE COUNTY, Colo. (KDVR) — The Colorado State Patrol says mountain roads are very icy this morning due to fresh snowfall.
CSP Eagle said, “Roads in the mountains are very icy this morning in areas. Please slow down and give yourself plenty of extra time to get to your destination. Troopers are responding to several crashes already throughout the mountain corridor.”
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The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has upped its travel warning for Singapore to the highest tier, Level 4, urging travelers to avoid visiting the city-state.
Singapore last week announced it would open its Vaccinated Travel Lanes program to several new countries, including the United States, this week, enabling fully vaccinated travelers to visit without quarantine if they follow testing protocols. While Singapore reports a vaccination rate about 82 percent, it has seen a spike in Covid-19 cases in recent weeks, leading the CDC to warn of a “very high” level of Covid-19 in Singapore and a risk for even fully vaccinated travelers to catch and spread Covid-19 variants.
Singapore was the only new country added to the CDC’s Level 4 warning in its most recent update. Three countries were moved down to Level 3 from Level 4—Cyprus, Eswatini and Tunisia—and three were moved up to Level 3 from Level 2: Angola, Djibouti and Hungary.
Bangladesh, Bolivia, Cameroon, Ghana, Kenya, Poland and the Republic of the Congo all moved to Level 2 in the update, and Bhutan, Paraguay, Senegal and Zambia all moved to Level 1.
7. More than one car in the home? Multicar policies could save or cost you £100s
Multicar insurance policies aren’tincluded on comparison sites, so to find out if you’ll save requires digital elbow grease.
My rule of thumb is first try the opposite to what you have, as insurance has always been about sucking in newbies with special deals. So if you’ve multicar, try standalone policies. Got standalone? Then try multicar.
Experts say that is when travelers typically get the best deals since airfares rise and availability drops closer to the holidays.
The study also found that COVID-19 vaccines are helping to boost confidence for holiday travelers. The survey discovered that compared to last year, when a vaccine wasn’t available, 35% of Floridians are more comfortable traveling this year.
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Ahead of an update to the UK’s red list, expected later today or tomorrow, the Foreign Office (FCDO) has removed its warning against non-essential travel to more than 30 countries.
Bangladesh, Gambia, Ghana and Malaysia are the among the nations removed from the FCDO’s “no-go” list.
The non-essential travel warning has previously been in place even for countries with low infection rates and no variants of concern, and is at odds with the Department for Transport’s (DfT) assessment of risk from travellers returning from such countries.
The FCDO is expected no longer to advise against travel to non-red list countries on Covid-19 grounds, except in “exceptional circumstances” such as if the local healthcare system is overwhelmed.
It follows the government’s streamlining of the traffic light system into two classifications: the red list and Rest of World (ROW) list.
Arrivals from red list countries are still required to pay for 10 days of hotel quarantine.
The next review of the red list is anticipated to bee announced today or Friday 8 October.
Six airlines join Emirates in adopting IATA Travel Pass
Six more airlines have announced that they will implement the IATA Travel Pass, an electronic Covid app where passengers can input their vaccination documents and check the rules and restrictions of their destination.
Etihad Airways, Jazeera Airways, Jetstar, Qantas, Qatar Airways and Royal Jordanian will join Emirates in implementing the pass in a phased rollout across their networks.
Vaccine certificates from 52 countries (representing the source of 56% of global air travel) can currently be managed using the app – this will increase to 74 countries, representing 85% of global traffic, by the end of November.
No countries will be added to red list, says expert
Industry figures and data analysts have been making their predictions for how many countries may be removed from the UK’s red list for travel, at an announcement expected later today.
“I’m not going to say 9 countries which will be on the red list come tomorrow as I still think that’s optimistic and it could be up to 18,” tweeted analyst Tim White, who follows Covid case figures in countries around the world each week.
“I cannot see any country needing to be added to the list,” he added.
The list currently stands at 54 countries. Others in the industry and media have predicted a drop to 12 countries, or as few as nine.
It’s worth noting that a large reduction to the red list was expected at the last travel update on 17 September, when only eight countries were removed from a then 62-strong list.
The Department for Transport has not confirmed a time for the announcement, but it is expected later today.
Refunds action against British Airways and Ryanair dropped
Passengers who were unable to travel on their British Airways or Ryanair flights because of lockdown rules will not be able to claim refunds, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has said.
Thousands of travellers had tickets on BA and the Irish airline for trips that they could not make because of lockdown rules in 2020 and 2021. British Airways offered vouchers for future flights while Ryanair allowed passengers to postpone their journeys.
Travellers are entitled to refunds when an airline cancels a flight. But the airlines have always maintained that as the flights departed they had no obligation to offer cash refunds under air passengers’ rights rules.
Tui is telling customers to recheck their holiday and flight booking details after it was forced to cancel a swathe of upcoming packages, due to the ongoing uncertainty caused by Covid-19 travel restrictions.
The tour operator said holidaymakers would get at least seven days notice, and could choose between a full cash refund or rebooking for a different date or destination.
It said in a statement: “We know some customers may be unsure about travelling this summer, so to offer continued flexibility and reassurance, fee-free changes can be made up to 14 days before travel for customers due to depart up to and including 31 October.”
It has announced the following cancellations:
Up to and including 16 October
Egypt (Hurghada and Sharm El Sheikh)
Up to and including 21 October
Up to and including 31 October
Austria, Italy and Slovenia (TUI Lakes and Mountains)
Foreign Office lists advice against travel to 30+ destinations
Hundreds of thousands of travellers and much of the travel industry are celebrating a Foreign Office decision to remove advice against travel to more than 30 countries.
Until now the FCDO has warned against non-essential travel to nations such as Bangladesh, Gambia, Ghana and Malaysia “based on the current assessment on Covid-19 risks”.
The warning has been in place even for nations with low infection rates and no variants of concern, and is at odds with the Department for Transport (DfT) assessment of risk from travellers returning from such countries.
None of the countries with advice being adjusted is currently on the government’s “red list” of 54 countries, from which travellers must quarantine in a hotel on entry to the UK.
Tourism body says red list must be scrapped to aid recovery
The “continued sluggish recovery” of travel and tourism means its contribution to global GDP will rise by less than one third in 2021 compared to 2020, according to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC).
The tourism body said it is “vital” for the British Government to scrap the red list in order to aid recovery of the sector.
While nearly $9.2 trillion was generated by travel and tourism worldwide in 2019, this plummeted by $4.5 trillion last year due to the pandemic – a drop of 49 per cent.
“While the global economy is set to receive a modest 30.7 per cent year-on-year increase from travel and tourism in 2021, this will only represent $1.4 trillion and is mainly driven by domestic spending,” said the WTTC.
As more councils go back into lockdown, the Rural Doctors Association says vaccination rates must be equal across all of New South Wales before regional travel is allowed.
Kyogle in the state’s northern rivers, Narromine in the central west and the Snowy Mountains all went back into lockdown yesterday.
Regional travel from Greater Sydney is set to resume when the state hits 80 per cent double vaccination but the association is worried that will be too risky if regional areas continue to lag behind Sydney’s vaccination rate.
The association’s chief executive, Peta Rutherford, said it was an anxious time for regional health.
“A lot of rural doctors are very nervous around Sydneysiders opening up,” she said.
“It’s important that the 80 per cent is consistent across every LGA.”
Tornado clean up
The NSW State Emergency Service (SES) says it’s lucky a tornado that hit the Central West yesterday wasn’t in a populated area.
The freak tornado destroyed several homes, and left a 30-kilometre trail of destruction in rural areas near Bathurst yesterday afternoon.
Three people were injured and two were taken to hospital.
SES Acting Superintendent Joshua Clark said crews worked late into the night yesterday to try and protect properties.
“This morning, SES crews will be attending the locations where the super cell went through, checking on the properties that were damaged by ensuring the tarps put in place yesterday afternoon and overnight remain in situ on those affected properties,” he said.
“It is very lucky where it did eventuate it wasn’t a very populated area — it was a rural area on the outskirts of Bathurst — [because] if it had been in a city we would have seen significant damage in that area.”
Ageism still rife
The Law Council of Australia says ageism is leaving many Australians over the age of 60 feeling invisible.
Council President Jacoba Brasch QC says ageism is one of the most common forms of discrimination in society, including in aged care.
Dr Brasch says one in four people will be over 60 in New South Wales in a decade’s time.
“The age discrimination act really needs to be enforced more frequently … we’d be keen at the Law Council for the government to be looking at an aged care act which actually specifies the rights of people seeking and receiving aged care,” he said.
“Ageism is one of the most pervasive ‘isms’ if you like, [it is] universally accepted unfortunately.”
Sue Holliday was the Director-General of the Department in the early 2000s, and had complete oversight of coal mine approvals.
She said standards need to be set that take into account greenhouse gas emissions.
“The environmental impact statement that supports an application for a coal mine is merely an apology for the proponent and I think we need to get away from that and we need to get into a more clearer, simpler, transparent set of criteria,” she said.
A spokesperson for the Planning Department said environmental impacts are subject to a rigorous, independent assessment against quantified criteria.