The Travel Column with Katie Butler, Total Travel
Holidays are coming...
More positive news for overseas travel came last week, with an announcement from Grant Shapps Secretary of State for Transport, announcing that fully vaccinated UK residents arriving in England from amber travel destinations will no longer have to quarantine from July 19.
Under 18’s returning from amber list places would also be exempt from quarantine.
Mr Shapps told MPs: “In essence, this means that for fully vaccinated travellers the requirements for green and amber countries are the same.”
He also said that from July 19, the day when most Covid rules in England are due to end, that the guidance around travelling to amber list countries will be removed, but warned that an amber list country could still turn red.
What do I need to know about travel to amber list countries?
If you have holiday plans to travel to an amber list destination we recommend you check the FCDO advice (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office), to see if the destination has any entry restrictions that could prevent your holiday from going ahead, or indeed any quarantine when you get there.
In these cases your package holiday provider should offer the option of an alternative holiday if available, or possibly a refund.
In addition, if the FCDO is advising against travel to your destination, you would normally be entitled to a refund.
If none of these apply to your holiday destination, then it is your personal choice as to whether you continue with your holiday as planned. There are many people who still want to travel and are able to travel, knowing that they can manage the testing requirements on return.
I am double vaccinated, how much will it cost me in tests to return back to England?
Test prices can vary dependent on which test provider you decide to go with. There are two return home tests: A certified pre-departure lateral flow test to be taken in resort, these are approximately between £25-£50pp. On return home a PCR test is required and these can be sourced from approximately £40pp. Children under 11 are not required to have a pre-departure test, but all passengers over four years of age will need to have the return home “Day 2” PCR test.
Will a face mask still be required onboard a plane after July 19?
Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that face coverings will no longer be a legal requirement when we reach the final stage of England’s lockdown, however, the wearing of masks on board a flight will be down to each individual airline. We expect that initially the requirement to wear a facemask will continue for the foreseeable future.
A busy week again with more and more holidaymakers collecting tickets, booking tests and jetting off on long awaited holidays. We are now starting to also get feedback from those that have been lucky enough to get away and so far everyone has managed to enjoy a relaxing time in the sun. Its a great feeling - waving customers out of the shop and wishing them a happy holiday. Let’s hope it continues!
■ If you have a specific travel question you would like Katie to answer in her column, please email: [email protected]