Virgin and Qantas could ban unvaccinated passengers from flying as restrictions tighten

UK's traffic light system 'hasn't worked' says Charles

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All travellers with Qantas will have to be double-jabbed if they want to fly as the unvaccinated are banned from travelling. The airline announced the strict policy as it moves to restart international flights.

Chief executive, Alan Joyce, said: “ Qantas will have a policy that internationally we’ll only be carrying vaccinated passengers.

“Because we think that’s going to be one of the requirements to show that you’re flying safe and getting into those countries.

“We’re hoping that can happen by Christmas. We think everyone should be protecting themselves.

“We also have a requirement to protect our colleagues and our passengers and then there’s also a requirement to protect the community.”

The major airline already requires frontline staff, including cabin crew, airport staff and pilots to be fully vaccinated.

By March 2022, all Qantas staff will need to provide proof of being double-jabbed to keep working.

Virgin Airlines has also led the way on vaccination as every member of staff must be vaccinated to work for the company.

Ryanair’s chief executive, Michael O’Leary has argued for “no restrictions” for double-jabbed passengers.

As Qantas calls for the unvaccinated to be banned from flying, the UK’s traffic light travel system is due to be scrapped on October 1.

The new system is likely to make travel easier for double-jabbed passengers who will no longer be required to take pre-departure tests.

Double-vaccinated tourists will also be excused from expensive post-arrival tests, as the amber and green lists are due to be merged.

Unvaccinated travellers may face more restrictions as new regulations will focus on vaccination status.

Other airlines may follow Qantas’s lead and ban the unvaccinated from boarding international flights.

Paul Charles, CEO of The PC Agency and travel expert, told BBC Breakfast: “Essentially if you’re not fully-jabbed then you have the incentive to get fully-jabbed.”

He said a ban on travel for the unvaccinated is “no different to what we’re seeing in nightclubs in the UK.”

Paul argued that double-vaccinated travellers should be able to travel freely: “I think we need to see a standard where you can go virtually anywhere at your individual risk.”

In a move to encourage passengers to get the vaccine, Qantas has handed out flight discounts to those opting for the jab.

Other incentives included points on frequent flyer cards which can be spent on flights or upgrades.

Over 60 percent of the UK population is now double-jabbed and everyone over the age of 18 will have been offered both vaccines by the end of September.

All travellers are advised to check local restrictions and the Government’s latest travel regulations before flying.

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