LONDON, Oct. 7 (Reuters) – Britain will lift strict COVID-19 quarantine requirements on Monday for 47 destinations, including South Africa and Thailand, and make it easier for people to arrive from countries like the India and Turkey in the latest relaxation of the rules.
Britain’s tourism industry has essentially lost two full summers after travel restrictions imposed to contain the spread of COVID-19 deterred many from traveling abroad.
Many countries with high infection levels have been redlisted, requiring arrivals to spend 10 days in a government-provided quarantine hotel, while the need for PCR and other tests costs often more expensive than the flight itself.
Airlines such as Ryanair and easyJet have said the frequently changing approach and restrictions have delayed any recovery in the sector, leaving the UK industry to lag behind its European peers.
On Thursday, Transport Minister Grant Shapps announced he would remove 47 destinations from the red list. Seven countries will remain, including Colombia, Ecuador, Panama and Venezuela.
It has also relaxed the rules for countries like India, Turkey and Ghana, which means that the vaccination status of arrivals will be recognized and fully vaccinated arrivals will only have to take a test on day 2. to check for the presence of COVID.
In another change, passengers will be able to send a photo of their lateral flow test result to verify the accuracy of the test once the requirement changes from the more expensive PCR test to lateral flow later this month.
Shapps said restoring people’s confidence in travel is key to rebuilding the economy. “With fewer restrictions and more people traveling, we can all continue to move forward safely on the road to recovery together. “
Reporting by Kate Holton, editing by Andy Bruce
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