Gatwick joins calls for removal of test requirements
With over 75 per cent of UK adults double vaccinated, the government needs to take advantage of its world-leading programme, according to officials at Gatwick.
Passenger numbers at the airport remained very low, at just 569,000, in the first six months of the year.
This was largely due to the impact of Covid-19 and the associated international travel bans.
While the airport remained open throughout this period all revenue streams were impacted and the collapse in passenger demand along with government restrictions led to a £245 million loss for the six-month period.
Gatwick Airport chief executive, Stewart Wingate, said: “In the UK we are all emerging to enjoy more freedoms due to our world class vaccination programme, however we are in danger of squandering the advantage that vaccination programme has afforded us for international travel.
“Our government needs to act now and remove unnecessary and costly PCR testing requirements for passengers, particularly for those double vaccinated.”
He added: “UK travel recovery should not be allowed to lag behind the US and Europe.
“Passengers need the travel rules simplified so they can choose to travel more freely and enjoy much needed breaks and reunions with family and friends which are currently much more attainable for those in Europe and the US.”
Karen Smart, managing director at Manchester Airport, made a similar call earlier today.
To simplify current travel rules and remove the prohibitive cost of Covid-19 testing for many passengers Gatwick is calling on government to remove all test requirements for travellers from green list countries.
The airport said there should be no test requirements for double vaccinated travellers from amber countries, as well as a single lateral flow testing for those non-vaccinated from an amber country.