HOLIDAYS to Turkey, Egypt, and the Maldives are back on after the countries were taken off the red list. At 4 am this morning, eight countries were taken off the red list, including Sri Lanka, Oman Kenya, Bangladesh, Bangladesh, and Pakistan.
That means anyone travelling to the UK from these destinations no longer have to pay £2,285 to stay in a quarantined hotel for ten days.
While unvaccinated Brits still need to quarantine at home for 10 more days and undergo PCR tests on Day 2 or 8, they will no longer have to travel to the UK to stay in a quarantined hotel. Children and vaccinated Brits can skip quarantine as well as the Day 8 test.
This is not the only change in travel. Fully vaccinated Brits who return from abroad will be able to skip the expensive tests. For UK citizens who have received both vaccines, the pre-arrival Covid testing, which is mandatory for anyone arriving from any country, will soon be eliminated.
Day two tests won’t need to be PCR-based, but will instead include a more affordable lateral flow test. This test is available from October 31st. Travelers will have to pay for the lateral flow as the NHS ones are not accepted, but are much cheaper, costing around £30.
Unvaccinated Brits, however, will face new restrictions – needing three Covid tests and a 10-day quarantine, even if returning from open countries. It is hoped that the new restrictions will be in place by October’s half-term. This will allow families to save hundreds and enable them to travel more places.
The Government is working as “quickly as possible” to remove PCR testing for international travellers, the Transport Secretary has said.
Grant Shapps told the Transport Committee hearing on Wednesday that he did not have an exact date for when testing restrictions would be lifted but said his colleagues at the Department of Health are “aware of half term” when families will be wishing to go on holiday.
“It’s clear the range of measures I introduced this week and last week are going to make a big difference and people will be able to travel much more freely. Part of that is the removal of the PCR test on day two and replacing it with a much simpler lateral flow test,” Mr. Shapps said.
“They (Department of Health) are aware of half term and are working closely with the private-sector providers to ensure we can do this as quickly as possible.”