Stricter measures will be imposed from tomorrow, Wednesday, in Malta, to deal with the pandemic of Covid-19, banning, among other things, the entry of unvaccinated British visitors, in its attempt to stop the spread of the Delta variant of the new coronavirus.
Unvaccinated children under the age of 12 will be able to enter the country if accompanied by an adult. However, the authorities' decision effectively prevents families with children in their teens from vacationing in one of the few destinations on Britain's “green list” – which means that tourists returning from Malta do not have to enter quarantine.
Another destination “closes” for the British
Malta has recorded only one case of the Delta variant, but there are fears that this number will increase after Britain ranked it in the “green list” last week.
Although the rate of vaccinations in Britain is among the highest in the world, this month saw a sharp rise in cases of the Delta variant.
Most infections affect people under the age of 40 who have not been fully vaccinated.
Britain is the main source of tourist income for Malta: one third of tourist arrivals come from this country.
Tourists from most other countries only need to test negative for the new coronavirus, which must have been performed up to 72 hours before their arrival.
The British were disappointed
Many aspiring British tourists have expressed frustration with the authorities' decision.
“Malta will lose money on accommodation, flights and (tourism) spending,” Derek Riul wrote on the Maltese Ministry of Information Facebook page.
He explained that he would now have to cancel his family vacations because of this new rule, which he called “arbitrary discrimination against teenagers”.
Malta has fully vaccinated three quarters of the adult population and is preparing to start vaccination in the 12-18 age group. As of mid-May, the number of new Covid-19 cases is in single digits, almost on a daily basis.