Boris Johnson expected to unveil Covid passports, travel traffic lights for UK

Rodiano Bonacci
Aprile 6, 2021

Boris Johnson said he was "hopeful" that the earliest possible resumption date of May 17 can be achieved but warned of rising case numbers in some overseas destinations.

When will I be able to go on holiday?

The UK government has promised to supply everyone in England with two quick-result lateral flow tests each week in a bid to cut the chain of transmission as the lockdown eases.

The government says an NHS-backed "certification" system will be used to show if someone has been fully inoculated, has antibodies, or has had a negative test.

The Government's Global Travel Taskforce will provide a report later this week on how worldwide leisure travel can resume.

He added: "With the government confirming countries will move between the red, amber and green lists, it is also crucial that travellers know that they won't be left out of pocket when changes do take place".

Under the traffic light system, assessments will be based on a range of factors, including the proportion of a country's population which has been vaccinated, rates of infection, emerging new variants and the country's access to reliable scientific data and genomic sequencing. People returning from green countries would not have to self-isolate.

What will I need to do to travel?

"The current intention is that, when non-essential global travel does resume, the NHS solution will facilitate worldwide travel where certification is required, and we will look to establish arrangements with other countries and worldwide organisations to establish mutual recognition of certificates".

When will we find out more about going on holiday?

"One of the things we don't want to see - and just as the vaccination programme is working so well - is getting new variants or risking new variants getting imported into this country", United Kingdom health minister Edward Argar told the BBC, in reference to the "very cautious" next phase of lifting lockdown restrictions.

In contrast to many European countries that are entering new lockdowns to tackle surging cases, Johnson has set out a staggered plan to ease restrictions in the coming months.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said regularly testing people who don't have Covid-19 symptoms would help "stop outbreaks in their tracks, so we can get back to seeing the people we love and doing the things we enjoy".

After a Cabinet meeting to finalise the latest set of plans, Johnson will host a Downing Street press conference in the evening to set out details of the next stage in his roadmap - which will see non-essential shops reopen and pubs and restaurants start serving outdoors from April 12.

Britons are among Europe's highest spending tourists so the fortunes of the continent's summer season and the travel industry, hit hard by restrictions imposed on travel because of the Covid-19 pandemic, will depend on when tourists can return to the beaches, cafes and tavernas of southern Europe.

Clive Wratten, chief executive of the Business Travel Association, said Johnson's announcement was "beyond disappointing". "This is our last resort".

He went on: "Government cannot keep kicking the can down the road as hundreds of thousands of jobs are at risk".

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