A few days after the United Kingdom lifted restrictions on international guests, it cut the “red list” from 54 to just seven countries.
Also this week, health authorities announced an end to the current traffic light alert level system. Transportation officials and business owners celebrated the news and exclaimed that the traffic light system built a barrier around their ability to earn a living.
The UK will now use a simpler system with just a red list and a rest-of-the-world list of countries.
Vaccinated travelers from a non-red list nation will not need to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test before their departure. However, the travelers will have to take a test within 48 hours of their arrival.
Travelers arriving from a red-list nation will need to quarantine in a hotel for 10 days. They must do this at specific hotels at a cost £2,285 for one adult.
The countries remaining on the red list include Haiti, Panama, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Peru and Ecuador. Travelers coming from anywhere else do not need to quarantine and can avoid costly post-arrival test regimens.
The four member nations of the UK agreed on these changes.
Officials announced that restoring the public’s confidence in travel will help rebuild the economy. Reuniting families will also reduce the stress people have experienced since the beginning of the pandemic. Since October 1, the UK has averaged more than 36,000 new cases of COVID-19 per day. The nation’s cases have plateaued at this high level for about three months.
Epidemiologists blame the high rate of new daily COVID-19 cases on the delta variant of the virus.
Health scientists hope that expanding the age of eligibility to include school-age children will decrease new cases of the virus. They also hope that those who have yet to receive a vaccination get one soon.