News

Britain scraps all COVID travel tests for UK entry

Fully vaccinated Aussies heading to the UK will no longer have to take a COVID test before or after arrival come 11 February.

This comes as the British government said it would free the country from bans, quarantines, and testing regimes.

British Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps, said COVID-19 travel tests were no longer useful for the fully vaccinated.

“As part of our efforts to ensure that 2022 is the year in which restrictions on travel, on lockdowns and limits on people’s lives are firmly placed in the past, today we are setting Britain free,” he told the Commons.

“With these changes today we have one of the most open travel sectors in the world … today is a momentous moment.

“Because it’s important that we’re able to unlock the borders, people are able to travel again, do business and, most importantly, see family who many people won’t have seen for a very long time because of the prohibitive costs.

“But be in no doubt, it’s only because the government got the big calls right, on vaccination, on boosters, on dealing with Omicron [that] we can now open travel and declare that Britain is open for business.”

All passengers arriving in the UK will still have to complete a passenger locator form to identify vaccinated from unvaccinated arrivals.

Unvaccinated travellers will still have to take a pre-departure test, and a PCR test on day two after arrival, but they will not have to self-isolate upon arrival.

If a new variant that is more concerning than Omicron emerges, the UK want to end hotel quarantine for red-list countries and replace it with enforced home quarantine.

However, there are currently no countries on the red list and Shapps said the government wanted to turn away from blanket measures in favour of “global sophisticated surveillance.”


Featured Image: iStock/franckreporter



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