Transport secretary Grant Shapps has confirmed that all remaining countries on the UK Government’s red travel list will be removed from 1 November at 4am, putting an end to quarantine hotels.
The list – which was amended on 7 October – included Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Haiti, Panama, Peru and Venezuela.
“We can also confirm that from Monday, eligible travellers from over 30 new countries and territories, including Peru and Uganda will be added to our inbound vaccination policy, bringing the total number of countries on this list to over 135,” the secretary added today via Twitter.
Even though rumours started circulating from early this morning, Shapps confirmed the government’s decision while stating that the red list category will remain in place “as a precautionary measure to protect public health”.
The news – which comes as the government allows vaccinated travellers to take later flow tests instead of PCRs from Sunday – was well received by the travel industry.
“It is encouraging to see further progress being made to remove barriers to free travel after 19 months of restrictions,” said Gary Lewis, chief executive at lobby group the Travel Network Group.
“We hope that this move helps to build customer confidence and reassure people that they can book trips and travel without the threat of costly or disruptive changes to their plans.”
Tim Alderslade, chief executive at Airlines UK, said the move was a “welcome progress” that will provide further reassurance for passengers.
“We now need to go further by removing testing altogether for the fully vaccinated and committing to reviewing all restrictions by the end of the year, to provide as much clarity to consumers, as early as possible,” he said.