Britons on vacation in France were evaluating on Friday to advance their return to the United Kingdom in order to avoid a 14-day quarantine, following the decision of the government in London to reimpose restrictions due to a rebound in coronavirus infections in the French country.
The UK government announced on Thursday night that it was removing France from the list of nations exempt from quarantine, making hundreds of thousands of vacationers, as well as those planning to cross the English Channel in the coming days, they wondered what to do.
The French government indicated that it will take a similar measure, which will mean a new blow for tourism, a sector that is just trying to recover from the economic disaster caused by the pandemic.
The British government stresses that it had to make the decision in view of a 66% increase in infections in France last week. It included the Netherlands, Malta, Monaco, and the Caribbean islands of Aruba and Turks and Caicos for the same reason.
The requirement of self-isolation for 14 days will take effect from Saturday at 4 a.m. local time, a deadline that will force many, especially those who cannot work from home, to try to return earlier.
Transportation Secretary Grant Shapps said the decision should come as no surprise, as the government has said it will constantly monitor infection rates on the list of countries deemed safe. Many of the traditional summer destinations are on the list. Of the destinations in the Mediterranean, only Greece and Turkey are considered safe.
While there is an increase in contagion in Britain, it is believed to be lower than in other European countries. The most recent figures from the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control show 32.1 cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 people in France, compared to 18.5 in the UK.