Thousands of Brits jetting off on holiday next week will still face quarantine restrictions due to the government’s air bridge delay.
Plans have been expected all week for a “traffic light” system, with a list of “green” or “amber” countries from which Brits won’t have to quarantine when they arrive home.
No10 also wanted to go a step further and announce “air bridges” – a two-way agreement with named countries, where Brits would be promised no quarantine at either end.
However, delays have led to the prospect of Brits already abroad and others who had planned to fly away on Monday now having to self-isolate, if they return before government policy changes.
Currently all travellers entering the UK – bar some exemptions – face 14 days of quarantine.
People who fail to comply can be fined £1,000 in England, and police are allowed to use “reasonable force” to make sure they follow the rules.
Questioned today, Downing Street could not say when the “traffic light” list would take effect – despite journalists previously being told it was “likely” from Monday 6 July.
Nothing has been announced with the UK government and Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon blaming each other for the hold up.
Under the new traffic light system Austria, Barbados, Croatia, Germany, New Zealand and Thailand are some of the countries that have been given the ‘green’ light, according to the Sun.
While Spain, Australia, Belgium and Italy are on the amber list.
All travellers arriving from abroad will have to supply contact information so they can be traced by health officials if someone they have been near, for example on a plane, displays symptoms or tests positive for Covid-19.
The Foreign Secretary has agreed that travel advice can be eased in countries and territories where the public health risk is no longer ‘unacceptably high’ and therefore advice ‘against non-essential travel’ can be lifted.
Travel advice decisions will be separate from the decisions made on air bridges.