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Coronavirus

UK’s green and amber lists could be replaced in travel rules shake-up: Reports

Published: Updated:

British government’s traffic light system for international travel amid the COVID-19 pandemic could be replaced under a shake-up, UK media have reported, citing sources.

The BBC has reported that the green and amber categories could be removed and replaced with a new system.

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A new system would allow vaccinated travelers to go to countries with similarly high levels of vaccination as the UK without the need for quarantine.

Sources told BBC the red category, which is for countries which the government says are the highest risk should not be visited, will remain in place.

Under current restrictions, red countries should not be visited “except in the most extreme of circumstances” and travelers returning from them must self-isolate for 10 days in a government-approved hotel.

The government declined to comment on the plans but said: “Our international travel policy is guided by one overwhelming priority - protecting public health."

It is understood that the government has asked senior travel industry leaders to make proposals for international travel to replace the current traffic light system.

The government devised the travel traffic light system to limit the transmission of COVID-19 from overseas and protect against new variants - such as the highly-infectious delta strain - coming into the country.

The Daily Telegraph first reported that the government was planning to scrap the traffic light system.

The third government review of international travel is due by 1 October, but sources say changes could come as soon as next week.

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Travel industry leaders want changes to happen as soon as possible. A relaxation in travel rules, they believe, would lead to a bookings surge, which may protect the jobs of those currently on furlough.

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