People who have had both doses of a coronavirus vaccine will be able to travel to amber list destinations without needing to quarantine on their return.
Grant Shapps has been outlining changes to the UK’s travel system, including a loosening of rules for people who have high levels of immunity.
All under-18s are also now being made exempt from quarantine rules when visiting the same areas.
Currently all those who visit countries on the amber list, which includes mainland Spain, Italy and France, have to self isolate for 10 days on their return.
This will no longer be necessary for those who have had two doses of a vaccine from July 19.
The Government is also removing the guidance that advises people not to travel to amber list countries.
Mr Shapps told the Commons: ‘I can confirm today that from the 19th of July, UK residents who are fully vaccinated through the UK vaccine rollout will no longer have to self-isolate when they return to England.
‘They’ll still be required to take a test three days before returning, the pre-departure test, demonstrating they’re negative before they travel, and a PCR test on or before day two, but they will no longer be required to take a day eight test.’
Mr Shapps said that, in essence, his announcement means that for fully vaccinated travellers the requirements for green and amber list countries are the same.
He said people must leave 14 days after their second jab in order to count as being fully vaccinated.
The new rules only apply in England, and Mr Shapps said people in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland should continue to follow measures set by the devolved administrations.
The move will come as a huge boost to the travel industry as it opens up far more potential holiday destinations for millions of people.
However many countries have their own strict measures in place for Brits entering, which, in reality, means travel may still be off limits for many months to come.
The latest figures show more than 34 million have already had their second jab in the UK, with plans to offer all adults both doses by mid-September.
Ministers met this morning to sign off on the final measures at a meeting of the Cabinet’s Covid-O committee ahead of Mr Shapps’ statement.
There has been frustration in the travel industry – which has been heavily hit by the pandemic – that the Government has not moved more swiftly to ease controls in the wake of the vaccine rollout.
Paul Charles, chief executive of travel consultancy The PC Agency, has advised consumers to ‘lock in deals’ before prices go up in the wake of the announcement.
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