When is October half-term and how have the travel rules for foreign holidays changed?

TRAVELLING abroad for a holidays has just got a lot easier.

By Matthew Mohan-Hickson
Monday, 4th October 2021, 2:19 pm

Last month transport secretary Grant Shapps announced a major relaxing of international travel rules for people departing from England.

Countries will be placed on a single red list and previous green and amber ranked nations will be classed as the ‘rest of the world’.

The rules for red list countries, where the coronavirus case rate is high, remain the same, meaning passengers returning from these nations must quarantine for 10 full days on their return.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Here's what you need to know about travel over October half-term. Picture: Aaron Chown/PA Wire

The change merges the amber and green list countries into a “rest of the world” area, stripping back previous travel rules.

Read More

Read More
Portsmouth port and Brittany Ferries welcome travel rules U-turn including scrap...

Passengers returning from non-red list locations do not have to quarantine.

The changes come into force today (October 4).

Also from the end of October, fully vaccinated travellers returning from non-red list countries will be able to replace the day two PCR tests with cheaper lateral flow tests and no longer need to take pre-departure tests.

What are the testing requirements for unvaccinated passengers?

Unvaccinated passengers travelling from non-red list countries must take pre-departure tests and day-two and day-eight PCR tests.

When is October half-term?

In Portsmouth, schools will break up on Friday, October 22 and go back on Monday, November 1.

Schools in Hampshire will also break up on October 22 and then return on November 1.

So if you are planning a getaway in October, these are the dates that you need to know.

Where can you travel to from Portsmouth?

This autumn Brittany Ferries is operating a wide range of sailings from Portsmouth to Caen, Cherbourg, St Malo, Bilbao and Santander.

Paul Acheson Brittany Ferries sales and marketing director said: ‘We welcome many of the changes that have been announced today, which should make it a lot cheaper and a lot easier to travel abroad.

‘For Covid-weary Brits freedom to travel has been the final locked door waiting to be opened by government.

‘However the entire travel industry, which is already on its knees, desperately needs clarification on timing for the introduction of simpler and cheaper lateral flow tests. This requirement for returning travellers must begin before the start of the October half-term break.’

October Prices (based on Portsmouth/Caen, each way) start from £119 for a car +2, £169 for a car and family of 4, £149 for a motorhome+2, and £199 for a motorhome and family of 4.

Brittany Ferries also offers a wide choice of sail-and stay holidays in France and Spain, with a choice of gites and cottages, hotels, apartments and campsites.

Where can you fly to from Southampton Airport?

There are a number of airlines operating flights out of Southampton Airport currently.

Including to sunny destinations like Ibiza, Mallorca and Greece – as well as the Channel Islands.

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

We’ve slashed the cost of digital subscriptions to our website by 50 per cent for a limited time.

You can now subscribe here for unlimited access to our online coverage, including Pompey, for less than 13p a day.