With the breakthrough in vaccine development to combat the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic which has caused the death of millions globally, British government is considering re-opening its country to international travelers but will require vaccine passport before allowing people in.
This move is due to airlines threatening a lawsuit against the country’s government.
The aviation industry is among the industries that were badly hit during the pandemic as international travel was banned by many countries over the fear of the disease spreading from other parts to their country.
Restrictions are expected to be relaxed in time as the peak season of July is coming – a time where airlines make most of their profits as many people travel from one place to the other.
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According to Reuters, Europe’s biggest airline Ryanair is said to be on the verge of filing papers on Thursday where it will launch legal action against British authorities over its travel policies.
However, Britain has now indicated that a relaxation could be on the cards as the country’s Department for Transport has reportedly stated it was considering how vaccinations could be used for inbound travel.
With more than half of UK adults being vaccinated completely (receiving both doses of their COVID-19 vaccines), the country is far ahead of other European countries.
Another report gotten via the Daily Telegraph has it that Britain was looking to follow the U’s move to allow fully vaccinated tourists in order to avoid the mandatory COVID-19 tests and quarantine periods starting by July.
“We have commenced work to consider the role of vaccinations in shaping a different set of health and testing measures for inbound travel,” a government spokesperson said on Thursday.
Popular airlines such as the aforementioned Ryanair, British Airways and even easyJet have all called on the country’s government to allow vaccinated travelers to avoid the compulsory 14 days quarantine and also easing its restrictions to some lower risk countries.
The chief executive of Ryanair has called the UK’s travel policy “a shambles”, and such is the airline’s frustration that it now wants to sue the government over its “opaque” system for classifying travel destinations as green, amber or red.
Base on the government’s plan, those who have had two doses of the COVID-19 vaccines will be allowed to avoid the compulsory quarantine on their return from amber list countries even though they will still be required to get tested according to the Daily Telegraph.
Asked about the report, Financial Secretary to the Treasury Jesse Norman told Sky News on Thursday that nothing was ruled out in considering how to re-open travel.
“We are trying to move cautiously and progressively in the right direction so I wouldn’t write anything off at this point,” he said.
The country first allowed international trips to re-commence just this past month and major destinations such as US, Spain, France and Italy were left off its safe list and amber countries requires 10 days of quarantine and multiple tests.
The government is expected to showcase its list of green list by June 24th stating it will make adjustments to its travel policies before the end of the month of June.