In a boost for holiday makers some travellers returning from ‘amber list’ countries could be set to avoid quarantine in less than two weeks time, it has been reported.
Fully vaccinated passengers who arrive from one of the mid-tier countries, which make up the bulk of the list, could return isolation-free from as early as July 19.
According to reports, airlines are preparing to check vaccine status on flights into England for the first time.
Ministers are set to meet this week to sign off on the policy that will allow people returning from amber destinations to not have to isolate for 10 days if vaccinated twice.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps will unveil the rules change on Thursday, The Sun reports, and travellers must take a test before they come back to England, and another on the second day of their return.
According to the Daily Mail Whitehall sources said Border Force has now dropped its objections to the plans, removing a major hurdle to early implementation.
A source said: “Border Force do have to make some technical changes and they had asked for a bit longer to get the new systems in place. But they can see the writing on the wall on this and they have accepted it will be the 19th.”
Another source said: “It is not just that people can see the writing on the wall – they can see it is the Prime Minister who is writing it and the objections to the 19th are falling away.”
But there are said to be concerns over the possibility of long queues at the border due to a surge in passenger numbers as well as checks.
A Whitehall source told The Times the policy ‘will happen before August’.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson set out plans on Monday for the final step in easing England’s lockdown restrictions, including the removal of laws governing social distancing and face coverings, and an end to official advice to work from home.
ABTA, the UK industry body representing 4,300 travel brands, has urged the government to make good on proposals to relax quarantine rules for fully vaccinated individuals visiting countries on the amber list like Spain and France.
As of the end of Monday, 86.2 per cent of British adults had received one dose of a vaccination against Covid and 64.3 per cent had received two doses.