UK eases virus rules for travellers

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England has set out measures to boost international travel, abandoning expensive COVID-19 testing requirements for fully vaccinated travellers, scrapping its traffic light system and adding eight countries to its safe list.

Travellers returning to England from Turkey, Pakistan, and the Maldives will not have to quarantine on their return as they are removed from the so-called red list for travel, UK transport minister Grant Shapps said.

Shapps also said under the new proposals destinations will simply be ranked low or high risk instead of red, amber and green.

From October 4, there will be a single red list of countries from where travellers to England must stay in a government-supervised hotel.

People who are fully vaccinated will no longer need a pre-departure test before returning from non-red list destinations, and from later in the month will be able to replace the day two PCR test with a cheaper lateral flow test.

"We're making testing easier for travel," he said on Twitter.

The UK also said it will recognise vaccinations given in 17 more countries, including Australia, Canada, Japan and South Korea.

It previously had recognised only shots given in the UK, the US and the European Union.

with AP and PA

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