Fears France on brink of travel red list as country scrambles to contain Beta Covid strain

Jersey: Don Thompson says France want to ‘triple’ boats

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Ministers are looking into the situation across the Channel as cases of the South African variant continue to rise. Officials have been asked to carry out a “deep dive” into the figures regarding the variant’s transmission, The Telegraph says.

People returning to the UK from red list territories are required to quarantine in a Government-approved hotel for 10 days.

Senior Whitehall sources told the Telegraph the potential move was mentioned on Wednesday at a meeting about overseas travel.

Sources familiar with talks told the news outlet the proposal was based on a study by the Joint Biosecurity Centre (JBC).

The JBC and the Department for Health were told to “interrogate” figures coming out of France.

The country is said to have “significantly higher” prevalence of the Beta variant compared to global levels, their report added.

The strain could be more resistant to vaccines than various other variants.

Britons have been warned guidance for travellers returning to the UK could change unexpectedly under the Government’s traffic light system.

Money saving expert Martin Lewis said booking a holiday now comes with a major “risk”.

He told ITV’s This Morning no travel insurance policies would protect holidaymakers from extra costs incurred when a country is suddenly placed onto the red or amber list.

Mr Lewis said: “There are no travel insurers that will cover you for what you want. People have to understand this: Travelling abroad for holiday has risk and there’s a risk to your finances.”

He added: “We mitigate that first of all by looking for flexible bookings.

“Secondly, by trying to pay on plastic preferably a credit card paid off in full so you get the Section 75 protection.

“And thirdly by having travel insurance.”

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