Grant Shapps says UK being ‘cautious’ over travel list

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Will Britons be able to enjoy what’s left of summer? Travel expert Simon Calder is very optimistic.

Speaking to Breakfast show this morning, he had one guarantee for Britons nervously waiting for today’s announcements:

“I can guarantee it [move to the red list] will not include our favourites of Spain, France, Portugal and Greece.”

This is fantastic news for holidaymakers wanting to make the most of what’s left of the summer with an overseas trip.

The traffic light system has been criticised, but Manchester Airports Group Chief of Staff Tim Hawkins reminded Britons “90 percent of the UK travel market is already on the green and amber.”

READ MORE: Happiest place to live in the UK named

The reason the UK is lagging behind Europe in terms of travel recovery was “the requirement for testing, it’s expensive”, he said.

There was also the issue of the complexity of the country’s system, on top of the cost.

Travel to red list countries is all but banned.

Holidaymakers coming back from red list countries have to pay thousands of pounds to quarantine in managed facilities.

Coming back from amber list countries does not require self-isolation for the doubly jabbed.

Tests are still mandatory.

Returning from green list countries, while easier than from amber, is still not completely open.

Travellers still have to fill in forms and take tests.

This is something that Tim wants to change.

He said that the travel industry really needed to see a change in the requirements for green and amber lists.

He commented: “At the moment we have one of the most complex and the most expensive system of any country.”

He believed this is the last chance for the Government to make a real difference.

The travel industry has operated at only a third of its usual summer traffic volume in the UK.

In Europe, where there are fewer requirements, the volume is already back to two thirds.

The travel announcements are expected today.

The next set of announcements, after today, will be on October 1, but the industry is calling for that to be brought forward.

Manchester Airports Group CEO Charlie Cornish said: “The Government must act urgently to review the system and re-evaluate the need for expensive PCR tests.”

The urgency of the situation was echoed by Tim, who said this morning that the industry wanted the next update to be “brought forward”.


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