A MUM and her daughter were stopped from boarding their flight to Cyprus after getting an inconclusive coronavirus test.
Joanne Lemaire had paid £1,500 with Jet2 to go on holiday to Cyprus with her daughter.
She received an email 72 hours before travelling, warning her to get a negative coronavirus test which is a requirement for Brits entering Cyprus.
However, she said she began to panic due to a shortage of tests on the NHS – living in Ware in Hertfordshire, she was only offered tests in Wales or Kent.
She told Herts Live: “I was sent an email to say I needed to do a COVID test and then to fill out a Flight Pass 72 hours before it went, but it didn’t stipulate what 72 hours before you went.
“I’m having conversations with friends saying, ‘do I take the day I’m actually going on holiday as part of the 72 hours or not?'”
After finally managing to get herself and her daughter a test, it came back inconclusive – and her flight pass to Cyprus was rejected.
This left her no time to get another test, meaning she was not able to board her flight.
Inconclusive tests can happen for a number of reasons, such as being taken incorrectly or other issues when the sample is being analysed at the centres.
Ms Lemaire said she has now been left out of pocket by both Jet2 and her travel insurance who have failed to pay her back for her missed holiday.
She said Jet2’s response was “disgusting,” explaining: “[Jet2] didn’t know what process to do, I said ‘surely somebody else has had this happen to them, has anybody come back with an inconclusive test?’
“She said somebody came back with no test – so their test hadn’t come back in time – and they lost their holiday too.
“[It’s an] absolute nightmare, I was fuming, my daughter has got special needs – she was in tears because she’s lost her holiday, through no fault of our own – we had [a test] done.”
The NHS currently states that NHS tests shouldn’t be used for the use of travelling, and that a private test should be booked instead.
Which other countries require a negative coronavirus test?
While mainland Portugal is on the quarantine list, Madeira and the Azores are not, but they also require a negative PCR test 72 hours before travel, along with other health checks and details.
It is advised for Barbados to have a negative test, taken up to 72 hours before arriving, or be forced into quarantine, along with Dubai, who requires a negative test no more than 96 hours before arrival.
Other countries require them on arrival, meaning tourists can take the test at the airport when they enter the country instead.
NHS tests may also not be accepted, as many private practices offer additional details such as Fit to Fly documents and time stamped results.
The current test shortage also means families are unlikely to be able to book a test and get the results within the 72-hour window.
Private test prices can vary although the average cost is between £100 and £200 – the top entries on Google offering coronavirus tests along with travel documents proving you are fit to fly range from £129 to £175.
A Jet2 spokesperson told Sun Online Travel: “We cannot provide advice on test options, however we advise customers to ensure that they thoroughly check country entry requirements before travel, and we specifically advised the customer of this on this occasion.
“We are sorry to hear about this situation, and would like to remind customers to always check country entry requirements, and to purchase appropriate travel insurance.”
Other British families heading abroad have been caught out by travel restrictions which countries have introduced during the pandemic.
Greece currently requires a Passenger Locator Form to be filled in, for the corresponding QR code to be shown at the border.
Some families faced problems boarding their flights as they didn’t have the code – if they arrive without it, they face €500 fines.