Grant Shapps warns travellers to hold off on booking travel tests
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From today (October 11) 47 countries have been removed from the UK travel red list, including Mexico, South Africa and Malaysia. The seven destinations still on the list are Peru, Colombia, Venezuela, Panama, Ecuador, Haiti and the Dominican Republic.
Passengers returning from every destination on the ‘rest of world’ list will not need to quarantine.
All travellers entering the UK from a red list destination will need to pay for Government hotel quarantine.
The hotels cost £2,285 for a ten day stay but many people have complained about the facilities’ conditions.
Although the UK has slashed the number of countries on the travel red list, there are currently 71 countries closed to UK nationals including the USA.
Before travelling, British tourists should always check the UK Government website for the latest rules for their holiday destination.
From later in October, the Government has announced that fully vaccinated passengers will be able to take a cheaper day two lateral flow test instead of a PCR.
The exact date for the change has yet to be announced although travel experts have called for clarity.
Passengers will be able to take a photo of their lateral test to prove the result to the testing teams.
Until the change is announced, double-vaccinated passengers must still take a day two PCR test after arriving in the UK and fill out a passenger locator form.
Double-jabbed passengers do not need to take a pre-departure test before arrival in the UK from a ‘rest of world’ location.
Unvaccinated passengers will need to take a pre-departure test and PCR tests on day two and eight and self isolate for ten days after arrival from a non-red country.
Grant Shapps, Transport Secretary, said: “With half-term and winter sun around the corner, we’re making it easier for families and loved ones to reunite, by significantly cutting the number of destinations on the red list, thanks in part to the increased vaccination efforts around the globe.
“Restoring people’s confidence in travel is key to rebuilding our economy and levelling up this country. With less restrictions and more people travelling, we can all continue to move safely forward together along our pathway to recovery.”
Simon Cooper, CEO of On the Beach, told Express.co.uk: “We welcome any news that simplifies international travel, and this latest announcement – along with recent easing of restrictions – brings travel closer to pre-Covid conditions than it has been in a long time.
“We hope that this will inject a healthy dose of confidence into travel again and represent a one-way exit from restrictions as people start to look forward to their well-deserved and much anticipated holidays next year.”
Double-vaccinated passengers travelling to Portugal will no longer need to take a Covid test on arrival in the country, according to the UK Government website.
Portugal will now accept the NHS Covid vaccination pass as proof of vaccination but tourists will still need to fill out a passenger locator form.
The advice for Portugal changed on October 8 and is in force for all passengers arriving after that date.
Other countries may have their own Covid restrictions in place. France requires everyone over the age of 12 to have a health passport to enter most hospitality venues and tourist attractions.
Unvaccinated people will need to take regular Covid tests to qualify for the French health passport.
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