Bookings surge as traffic light system axed

Holiday booking volumes are showing a big uptick since the government revamped and simplified the foreign travel rules in England.

The UK’s leisure airlines have reacted to the changes with optimism.

The current traffic light system will be axed from 4 October.

From that date, all countries not on the high-risk red list will be considered green and ‘clear for travel’ for the fully jabbed.

“We have seen demand step up over the last few days, and there has been an immediate surge in bookings for package holidays on the back of this welcome news for holidaymakers ,”

“The Traffic Light system has been confusing and completely unfit for purpose since day one. We welcome a new approach which is easy for everyone to understand and provides certainty.”

Eight countries were also removed from the red list, including Turkey.

The other big change means travellers skip pre-departure tests for travelling into England from non-red list countries.

Then at the end of October, the day-two PCR test can be replaced with a cheaper lateral flow test.

“For months we’ve urged the government to review the traffic light system. This much simpler approach not only supports the travel industry, which has faced so much difficulty, but it means that more hard working people can get away on their well-deserved holidays without incurring additional testing costs,” said Garry Wilson, easyJet holidays CEO.

“Moving from the established three traffic light system to a two-tier entry regime for vaccinated or non-vaccinated passengers, brings greater clarity to entry requirements and recognises the vaccination status of an additional 17 countries,” said Dale Keller, chief executive of the  Board of Airline Representatives in the UK (BAR UK).

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