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Airlines slash prices to Malta, Croatia and Germany among dozens of green list jaunts

Airlines are slashing their prices to popular holiday destinations in a boost for lockdown-weary Brits hoping to snap up last-minute getaways.

Countries that have moved up the Government’s traffic light system have seen their fares drop in a bid to encourage holiday-seekers to head abroad this summer.

Seven new destinations were added to the UK’s green list as of 4am this morning – Germany, Austria, Latvia, Norway, Slovakia, Slovenia and Romania – and all have seen a drop in price for flights.

However, it should be noted that Austria requires tourists to quarantine for 10 days while Norway is not currently permitting tourists to enter the country. 

According to price comparison site Skyscanner, tickets direct to Frankfurt, in Germany, can be bought for as little as £21 from next Monday while you can head to Cologne from £33.

Holidaymakers can fly to the Austrian capital Vienna from £27 or head to Riga, in Latvia, from £26.

Meanwhile, Cluj-Napoca, in Romania, which is considered the unofficial capital of the Transylvanian region, will only set you back £18 for a flight there from mid August.

Brits can fly to German from as little as £21 from mid August as airlines slash their fares in a bid to encourage more passengers to head abroad this summer. Pictured: Frankfurt in Germany

Seven countries were added to the Government's green list as of 4am this morning including Germany, Romania, Latvia, Austria and Norway. Pictured: The city of Cluj Napoca in Romania

Seven countries were added to the Government’s green list as of 4am this morning including Germany, Romania, Latvia, Austria and Norway. Pictured: The city of Cluj Napoca in Romania

But it’s not just the new arrivals to the green list that have seen a drop in price. Popular tourist destinations including Croatia and Malta, which were both already green listed, have also seen fares slashed.

Skyscanner is showing flights from £93 for a one-way ticket to Split or £143 to Dubrovnik while flights to Malta are going from as little as £55.

Destinations on the amber list – where unvaccinated travellers must self-isolate while double jabbed Brits must provide a negative test – have also seen fares drop as airlines try and boost passenger numbers.

This was especially true of countries that had been rumoured to move to the amber plus list but have remained amber including Portugal and Greece.

Passengers can pick up flights to Faro in Portugal from £9 from mid August or to Porto from £24.

You can also find fares from as little as £22 to Greece’s Santorini or £13 to Santander in Spain.

And those looking to take advantage of the relaxed rules regarding travel to amber-listed France could head to popular spots from as little as £9.

From 4am this morning, arrivals from France who are fully vaccinated with a jab authorised and administered in the UK, US or Europe do not need to quarantine.

Fares to the port city of Brest on the west coast will only set you back £9 while tickets to more popular destinations such as Marseille or Nice are going at £24 and £115 respectively.

You can also fly to the amber listed Czech Republic from as little as £9 from mid August while popular destinations to the Canary or Balearic islands such as Tenerife or Ibiza will cost you around £24. 

From mid August, holidaymakers can pick up fares from £27 and head to Latvian capital Riga

From mid August, holidaymakers can pick up fares from £27 and head to Latvian capital Riga

Pictured: View of Bratislava's historic downtown with St. Martin's Cathedral in Slovakia

Pictured: View of Bratislava’s historic downtown with St. Martin’s Cathedral in Slovakia

Gavin Harris of Skyscanner told the Telegraph travel firms were using low prices to help build confidence as people started to travel again and said prices were forecast to remain low.

He added: ‘This extremely competitive marketplace is fantastic news for travellers looking for good value trips.’

According to the Telegraph, return tickets to popular Spanish resorts of Alicante, Tenerife and Malaga are all currently selling at more than a 10 per cent discount compared with before the pandemic.

Rory Boland of consumer group Which?, said airlines had a lot of spare capacity as the number of flights remained dramatically reduced which means they can react quickly to any government announcements.

He said: ‘They add flights, making more seats available, and that pushes prices down.

Countries already on the green list have seen fares drop including Croatia. Pictured: Dubrovnik

Countries already on the green list have seen fares drop including Croatia. Pictured: Dubrovnik

Passengers can fly to Malta from £55 in mid August. Pictured: St Paul's Cathedral in Valletta

Passengers can fly to Malta from £55 in mid August. Pictured: St Paul’s Cathedral in Valletta

‘Immediately when changes are announced you can see price increases because capacity has not had time to shift, but they tend to fall within a couple of days.

‘Anyone booking a holiday to a green-list country should wait for a few days after travel restrictions have changed to get the cheapest flights.’

It comes as bookings for foreign holidays soared by up to 250 per cent after the Government revealed rules on travelling to France would be relaxed while the green list was expanded.

From 4am this morning, arrivals from France who are fully vaccinated with a jab authorised and administered in the UK, US or Europe do not need to quarantine.

Meanwhile, Austria, Germany, Latvia, Norway, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia all moved to the green list, and Bahrain, India, Qatar and United Arab Emirates are now listed as Amber.

The updates caused a surge in holiday searches, with Hays Travel, the UK’s largest independent agent, reporting a 193 per cent surge in bookings between Thursday and Friday.

British Airways reported a 260 per cent week-on-week increase in searches for holidays to the south of France as changes to restrictions were made (Pictured: Cote d'Azur, south of France)

British Airways reported a 260 per cent week-on-week increase in searches for holidays to the south of France as changes to restrictions were made (Pictured: Cote d’Azur, south of France)

One of the biggest winners from the travel list updates was Jet2, which saw a 250 per cent spike in bookings to amber and green list destinations yesterday compared to the day before.

According to Skyscanner, searches for holidays to Dubai were up 213 per cent, making it the second-most popular search on the comparison website after Spain – which saw a 42% rise in bookings compared with a week ago. 

The company said its top destinations are currently Malaga, Palma, Alicante, Tenerife, all in Spain, and then Dubai.   

Meanwhile British Airways reported a 260 per cent week-on-week increase in searches for holidays to the south of France.

And Brittany Ferries said it took 1,400 bookings to France on Thursday, up from 568 a day earlier, while Eurostar said bookings from London to Paris doubled over the same period. 

It follows a spat between the UK and its neighbour to the south after the British Government made it the only amber list destination from which fully jabbed travellers had to quarantine upon return.

While travel companies have praised the latest updates, some industry sources said it was ‘too little too late.’


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