Boris Johnson says travel red list is under 'constant review'
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Transport Secretary Grant Shapps today announced the travel lists ahead of the reopening of international travel on May 17. He disappointed many by announcing three new countries would be added to the Red List meaning travel rules are most restricted to this country.
Speaking from Downing Street on May 7, Mr Shapps said the country has made “huge progress” this year, but the end has not yet arrived.
He said a “careful and prudent” and “responsible” approach is need to ensure there is no resurgence of Covid.
His announcement came after the new Indian Covid variant was declared a variant of concern, meaning surge testing will take place in areas where the variant is detected.
Mr Shapps said “there is simply no substitute for human contact”, as he said travel is essential to rebuilding the economy.
But he warned the success in combatting Covid in the UK is not yet replicated in “many countries abroad”.
The Travel Secretary also noted the case in India.
He said countries with high vaccination rates and low infection rates would be reconnected with the UK.
However, he warned three new countries would be added to the red list: Turkey, the Maldives and Nepal.
What restrictions are in place for red list countries?
Red list countries have the strictest rules in place for visitors.
A total of 43 countries will be on the red list from May 12.
People are only permitted to enter the UK if travelling from these countries if they are a UK or Irish national, or a UK resident.
Travellers will be required to undertake the following in order to enter the UK:
- Take a private Covid test in their holiday destination, before returning to England
- Fill in a passenger locator form online before they leave their destination
- Book a 10-day hotel quarantine and testing package for each member of their group before departure
- Take a private PCR test on or before day two of their arrival in England and again on day eight
The full list of red list countries are as follows:
- Cape Verde
- Congo (Democratic Republic)
- French Guiana
- Maldives (from 4am BST on Wednesday, May 12)
- Nepal (from 4am BST on Wednesday, May 12)
- South Africa
- Turkey (from 4am BST on Wednesday, May 12)
- United Arab Emirates (UAE)
The news has sparked concern for many given the UEFA championship final is due to be played in Turkey.
Mr Shapps said putting Turkey on the red list means that fans should not travel to Turkey.
He said: “I’m afraid we are having to put Turkey on the red list.
“This will have a number of ramifications. First of all, it does mean with regards to the Champions League, fans should not travel to Turkey.
“The FA are in discussions with UEFA on this. We are very open to hosting the final but it is ultimately a decision for UEFA.
“Of course the UK has already got a successful track record of football matches with spectators, so we are well placed to do it.
“We are very open to it but it is in the end a decision for UEFA to make, but given there are two English clubs in that final, we look forward to what they have to say.”
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