Holidays to Turkey have been on hold for some time amid the coronavirus lockdown measures and subsequent border closures. The country is now beginning to ease some of its lockdown measures, including the reopening of its borders, but is introducing new rules to combat the spread of the virus.
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All people in Turkey will now be subject to strict face mask regulations, with rules varying depending on which city or province they are in.
In line with the latest update, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) issued new advice for Britons currently in Turkey.
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The FCO website explains: “The wearing of masks is obligatory throughout Turkey in crowded places and specifically in markets and supermarkets, hairdressers and barber shops.
“The wearing of masks is also compulsory on all public transport, including Metro, buses, taxis and ferries, and in some areas, masks must be worn when travelling in private vehicles with more than one person.”
In some cities and provinces, the rules are even stricter, with face masks being a mandatory requirement the moment you step outside of your accommodation.
The FCO adds: “The wearing of face masks is mandatory at all times outside the home in the following cities and provinces: Adıyaman, Afyonkarahisar, Amasya, Ardahan, Aydın, Balıkesir, Bartın, Batman, Bolu, Burdur, Denizli, Diyarbakır, Düzce, Elazığ, Erzurum, Eskişehir, Gaziantep, Giresun, Iğdır, Isparta, Kahramanmaraş, Karabük, Kayseri, Kırklareli, Kocaeli, Konya, Kütahya, Malatya, Mardin, Muğla, Muş, Nevşehir, Osmaniye, Rize, Sakarya, Siirt, Sivas, Şanlıurfa, Şırnak, Tunceli, Uşak and Zonguldak.”
The first passenger flight from the UK to Turkey departed on June 11.
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Britons are amongst those welcomed back into the country but must meet a set of criteria laid out by Turkish immigration.
“All arrivals into Turkey will be subject to a medical evaluation for symptoms of coronavirus, including temperature checks,” states the FCO.
“Any passengers showing symptoms including high fever, coughing or respiratory difficulties will be will be required to undergo a PCR test (a swab test) for coronavirus.
“In the event that a test returns a positive result, you will be provided with medical treatment at a facility determined by the Ministry of Health or, if preferred, at a private medical facility in Turkey at your own expense.”
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Of course, while Turkish authorities have given UK travellers the green light, the FCO continues to advise Britons against all but essential travel.
Though this is “under constant review”, the government has not given any indication as to when holidays may go ahead.
“Due to restrictions imposed in other countries, in some cases, the resumption of scheduled passenger flights may not be possible until those countries have eased their own restrictions, and given permission for flights to resume to and from Turkey,” states the FCO.
Furthermore, under current UK regulations, all travellers arriving into the UK from overseas, with the exception of Ireland, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man, must undergo a 14-day quarantine period.
Those found in breach of the self-isolation requirements could face a fine of up to £1,000.
The rule is set for review on June 29.
Secretary of State for Transport Grant Shapps also offered some optimism towards the possibility of “air bridges” being developed in the coming month.
Speaking on BBC News on Tuesday morning he said: “The actual date for the review is the 29 June on the 14-day quarantine,” he said.
“We are, and I am, actively looking at whether we can introduce air corridors or international travel corridors, perhaps with reciprocal arrangements with other countries.”
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