Transport secretary, Grant Shapps, has confirmed vaccinated travellers returning to England from amber list countries will no longer have to self-isolate from later this month.
Speaking in Parliament this morning, he said: “I can confirm today from July 19th, UK residents who are fully vaccinated through the UK vaccine rollout will no longer have to self-isolate when they return to England.”
Travellers will still have to take a pre-departure test three days before they go and a PCR test on or before day two of their return.
Shapps said the changed would apply to people 14-days after their second jab.
Travellers will also no longer be required to take a day eight test, meaning the requirements for green and amber list countries are the same.
Under the new rules, children under the age of 18 returning from amber-list countries will not have to isolate on their return, nor will they have to take a Covid-19 test on day eight.
Children between the ages of five and ten will only have to take a day two test, and as before, children aged four and under are to be exempt from all testing and isolation requirements.
Shapps added that he recognises the travel rules for children have been a big concern for families, and he is “delighted” to be able to offer them reassurance on this.
The minister confirmed the government will also remove the guidance that people should not travel to countries on the amber list.
“This means that people will be able to travel for leisure, for business and to see families in amber list countries,” he said.
Responding to the news, Stewart Wingate, chief executive of Gatwick Airport, said: “Plans to open up travel to amber countries for those who have received both doses of the NHS vaccine without the need for quarantine is another small step in the right direction.
“However, with summer holidays just around the corner, we are approaching a crucial time for our industry, and we urge government to remove other barriers inhibiting international travel, including the need for costly PCR tests for those who have been double vaccinated.
“At the very least, if tests are required, they should be the more readily available lateral flow tests or PCR tests carried out free of charge at an NHS facility, as has been done in France.
“We would also urge government to urgently follow the lead of EU counties to ensure that internationally agreed, coordinated protocols are in place so that processes when crossing borders to other countries are as smooth as possible, with no unnecessary queues, checks or costs.”
There will be no changes to the rules for arrivals from red list countries, will travellers expected to spend ten days in a government approved hotel, at their own expense.