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UK and Israel impose restrictions over new COVID-19 strain from Africa

Nov. 25, 2021
2 min read
UK and Israel impose restrictions over new COVID-19 strain from Africa
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A new strain of COVID-19 has both the U.K. and Israel imposing new restrictions on travel.

The United Kingdom is banning flights from six African nations and adding those nations to their "red list," on fears over the new COVID-19 variant. The news was first reported by the BBC.

U.K. Health Secretary Sajid Javid said flights from Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe are banned beginning Friday Nov. 26.

Javid said while scientists still needed to know more, health officials were worried about the new strain of coronavirus now being found in South Africa and a few other African nations.

The new strain is being called the B.1.1.529 variant. The Wall Street Journal reporting the World Health Organization will hold an emergency meeting on Friday to decide wether or not to declare the new strain a so-called "variant of concern."

The new strain reportedly has more than 30 mutations. It first showed up in Botswana, but already there are reports of dozens of cases in South Africa and there is even a case in Hong Kong. The person in Hong Kong recently returned from a trip to South Africa.

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There are no cases reported in the United Kingdom.

South African officials say it appears to spread more rapidly than previous strains.

Javid saying, "And that would suggest that it may well be more transmissible and the current vaccines that we have may well be less effective."

According to the Guardian, health officials in the U.K. will track down passengers who've returned from anywhere in Southern Africa and they will be offered tests to make sure they haven't brought the new strain. U.K. officials are also reportedly further measures including considering requiring all incoming passengers to submit to PCR tests on arrival.

Israel has also banned arrivals from the same six African nations plus Mozambique, and is banning its citizens from visiting those same countries.

There's been no comment so far from the Centers for Disease Control in the U.S.

Featured image by LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 22: Passengers heading to the departure gates at Heathrow's Terminal 2 on December 22, 2020 in London, England. London and the South East have entered a 'Tier 4' lockdown as a new coronavirus strain is detected in the lead up to Christmas. (Photo by Joseph Okpako/Getty Images)
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
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Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
2X2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

    75,000 bonus miles
  • Annual Fee

    $395
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    740-850
    Excellent

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,400+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and our Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023