The islands of Guernsey, Alderney, Sark and Herm will lift all Covid travel restrictions on visitors from the UK and other parts of the British Isles from July.
The government confirmed on Friday (21 May) the islands would remove all testing and self-isolation requirements on arrivals "on or close to 1 July", citing the progress of the islands’ and the UK’s vaccination programmes.
From July, the islands will transition to a traffic light system, closely aligned to that laid out by the UK government.
Those travelling via the UK to Guernsey from other destinations around the world will need to check if they are coming from green, amber or red list countries to determine what the requirements are for entry into Guernsey.
However, there will be no testing or self-isolation rules for people whose visit originates from the UK or elsewhere within the Common Travel Area. The new rules will apply equally to those who have been vaccinated against Covid-19, and those still awaiting a jab.
Visitors will still be asked to provide details of their travel history in the 14 days preceding their visit via the islands’ online travel tracker at gov.gg
The government said the move reflected a change in focus for islanders, who are now able to rely on vaccination as a first line of defence and plan for living responsibly with Covid-19.
Chief minister of Guernsey, deputy Peter Ferbrache, said lifting restrictions would allow the island to begin restoring its tourism economy. "It’s a part of island life that’s been on hold, but finally we’re near the point we can un-pause and reconnect with the rest of the British Isles and the rest of the world.”
Ferbrache said a staycation campaign had helped support tourism and hospitality businesses, particularly with there being limited community transmission of Covid-19 and therefore few rules such as social distancing, wearing face coverings and capacity limits.
However, he added that despite the support from locals, tourism businesses had relied on emergency government funding.
Ant Ford-Parker, founder and owner of Outdoor Guernsey and chair of the Guernsey Tourism Partnership, added: "We now look forward with excitement to welcoming UK visitors, family and friends again, to rebuilding and revitalising our businesses, and working to make the most of the new opportunities as people look for safe, welcoming and uniquely different destinations in a changed world.”