The United Kingdom is abandoning the traffic light system on October 1
Rules criticized by the London government over the traffic light system that governs international travel could be repealed in October. The UK wants to implement a new system based on the vaccination status of travelers, rather than the Covid rating of the country it visits.
Those who are fully vaccinated with a vaccine that is part of the UK vaccination program will no longer have to be quarantined when they return to the UK, even if they return from a yellowlisted country. Thus, both those who travel to a country that is on the green or yellow list only need to take a test before leaving the city where they spent their vacation and a second test two days after returning to the UK.
The yellow list and the green list will disappear and only the red list will remain, where the countries that will still require restrictions will be passed.
The new system must be approved by October 1 to coincide with the completion of vaccination for all eligible adults over the age of 18. A simplification of the restrictions would bring the UK more in line with other nations in Europe and the world.
However, it is unlikely that the government will drop expensive PCR tests for all arrivals, although there is growing pressure from airlines and the hotel industry to replace them with rapid antigen tests that are much cheaper.
The executive director of British Airways yesterday reiterated the industry's arguments that the UK traffic light system for international travel "Is not appropriate for the purpose and needs to be simplified". Sean Doyle said the rules on passenger testing and quarantine for arriving passengers need to be more relaxed for passengers. "I used the traffic light system over the summer. There has been some progress, but I think it is not appropriate for the purpose. It needs to be simplified and adapted in the same way that we see in Europe and the USA. We would encourage the government to seize the opportunity. "
The proposed new system will only have an impact on unvaccinated travelers.
Paul Charles, Executive Director of the PC Travel Agency, wrote on Twitter: "The traffic light system is expected to be canceled by October 1 - finally. Airlines and many in the industry are aware of plans to create a simpler system in which countries are either red or not. ".