Fully vaccinated passengers 'will no longer have to isolate after visiting amber list countries'

Wednesday, 7th July 2021, 10:10 am
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps is set to update MPs later this week regarding isolation requirements for fully vaccinated passengers (Photo: Leon Neal/ Ian Forsyth/Tolga Akmen/Getty Images)

Fully vaccinated passengers arriving in England from amber list countries are set to have quarantine rules scrapped, with ministers due to meet on Thursday (8 July) to sign off on the new policy.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps will update MPs later this week on how to remove the need for fully vaccinated arrivals to isolate when they return from an amber list country.

The move comes as Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the lifting of all final Covid-19 restrictions in England from 19 July, pending a final decision on Monday 12 July.

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New system implemented ‘before August’

According to The Times, a Whitehall source said that the policy “will happen before August”.

The news comes after Heathrow airport announced that it would be opening a dedicated fast track lane for fully vaccinated passengers from selected locations.

Additionally, fully vaccinated people will also no longer be required to self isolate if they have come into contact with someone who has tested positive - they will only need to do so if they themselves test positive for the virus.

‘Step by step, jab by jab’

Speaking to Parliament, Health Secretary Sajid Javid said: “Asking people with COVID-19 and their close contacts to self-isolate has played a critical role in helping us get this virus under control, and I’m so grateful to the millions of people across the UK who have made sacrifices to keep the virus at bay.

“Thanks to the UK’s phenomenal vaccine programme and the huge wall of defence, we can safely take steps to reduce self-isolation for people who are fully vaccinated, and those aged under 18, and instead advise people to take a PCR test. Positive cases will still need to self-isolate.

“Step by step, jab by jab, we are replacing the temporary protection of the restrictions with the long-term protection of the vaccine so we can restore the freedoms which we cherish and the experiences which mean so much for us all.”

What are the current amber list rules?

The current rules regarding those returning from amber list countries states that prior to arriving in England, you must take a Covid-19 test, book and pay for day two and day eight Covid-19 travel tests, to be taken after arrival, and complete a passenger locator form.

On arrival, you must quarantine at home or in the place you are staying for 10 days and take a Covid-19 test on or before day two and on or after day eight.

These rules apply regardless of your vaccination status.

Countries currently on the amber list include popular destinations like the Bahamas, Belgium, Netherlands, Italy, Greece (including islands), France and more.