Britain said on Thursday it was removing the last seven countries from its travel “red list”, meaning travelers vaccinated against the coronavirus will no longer have to self-quarantine at a government-approved hotel after arriving in the UK
The countries are Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Haiti, Panama, Peru and Venezuela. Once the change takes effect at 4 a.m. (0400GMT) Monday, fully vaccinated travelers will no longer have to stay in a quarantine hotel for 11 nights at a cost of more than 2,000 pounds ($ 3,000).
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said the red box would remain “as a precaution” in case it was needed later.
He said Britain would also recognize vaccinations given in more than 30 additional countries, including Peru and Uganda, bringing the total to more than 135.
At one point, dozens of countries were on the red list, with other countries classified as orange, for medium risk, or green for low risk. Britain removed the orange and green categories on October 4 and removed most countries from the red list three weeks ago.
Karen Dee, CEO of the Airport Operators Association, said the latest move was “a welcome and an important step forward towards standardizing international travel.”
The UK government is only developing health policy for England, but Scotland and Wales have said they will reflect the changes. The Welsh government, however, has expressed concern that the change will increase the chances of a new strain of the more serious or vaccine-resistant coronavirus reaching the UK.
Britain has experienced one of the world’s worst coronavirus outbreaks, with more than 140,000 confirmed deaths from COVID-19.
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