What are the New Travel Rules?

With the latest update to the UK’s travel rules announced, booking a holiday is now even easier!

From 4 October, the traffic light system we’ve been using for the last few months will be overhauled.

We understand there’s a lot to take in when it comes to keeping track of the latest travel news and updates.

So, our Travel Specialists at Inspiring Travel company are ensuring they keep fully informed of every change, allowing you to sit back and enjoy your holiday.

You can always give them a call to find out more about the latest travel rules. We also have a full guide to the traffic light system, which we’ll keep updated with the details.

 Or, you can read our quick guide to which rules have changed below…

Mallorca

What travel rules have changed?

Travel rules may differ for Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Please speak to our Travel Specialists for more information.

1. There’s now only one list

The main change to the travel system has been the merging of the lists together. This allows us to make the most of the benefits provided by the UK’s vaccination programme, while also making it simpler to understand where you can go.

Old rule

The previous travel system was made up of three lists – red, amber and green.

You couldn’t travel to the red list on holiday, while rules for visiting the amber and green list destinations depended on whether you’d been fully vaccinated. There were also slightly different rules in place for children of various age groups.

New rule

Under the new rules, there’s just one list – the red list. This covers the destinations you can’t travel to, unless for essential reasons.

From 4 October, if a country isn’t on the red list, you’re free to visit it on your holiday – though you’ll also need to check that the FCDO doesn’t advise against travel and that the entry requirements allow UK travellers in.

While the rules you’ll need to follow still depend on your vaccination status, the reduced number of ‘lists’ make is easier to understand where, and how, you can safely travel on your holiday.

Santorini, Greece

2. If you’re double vaccinated, you don’t have to take a test before returning home

The next major change to the travel rules from 4 October is the reduced testing requirements if you’ve been fully vaccinated.

Old rule

The previous system required all travellers to take a pre-departure test at least 72 hours before they arrive back in the UK. If you’d been fully vaccinated, you’d have to take another PCR test on your second day home. If you hadn’t been fully vaccinated, you’d have to take an additional test on your eighth day home, too.

New rule

From 4 October, if you’ve been fully vaccinated, you’ll no longer have to take a pre-departure test before coming home. We’re sure this will be very welcome news for many, as it helps ease the worry that you won’t be able to come home as planned if you test positive while away.

There are also plans to allow fully vaccinated travellers to take a lateral flow test on their second day home, rather than a PCR test, when returning to any country not on the red list.

This new rule also applies to anyone under the aged of 18 years returning from any destination not on the red list.

If you’ve not been fully vaccinated, the rules remain unchanged – you’ll need to take a pre-departure test and two PCR tests at home, plus isolate for 10 days.

We have a full guide with more information about COVID-19 testing for travel.


Book with Confidence

Remember, all holidays booked with us at Inspiring Travel Company are covered by our Book with Confidence guarantee – so, if your plans do have to change, we’ll take care of it, hassle-free.


Mauritius

3. The cost of travelling has been reduced

These changes have another big benefit for taking a holiday – the reduced testing requirements will also help reduce the cost of your holiday.

Old rule

Under the previous traffic light system, a fully vaccinated traveller would need to take the following tests for their holiday:

  • Any PCR or lateral flow tests required by their holiday destination in order to enter
  • A negative pre-departure test taken within 72 hours of their return home
  • A PCR test on their second day back home

New rule

As we’ve already mentioned, fully vaccinated passengers will no longer need a pre-departure test from the 4 October, while their second day PCR test will be replaced by a lateral flow test later in the month.

This helps reduce the cost of taking multiple tests, with lateral flow test being much lower in cost, too.

What’s more, if you have proof of a full vaccination, some destinations don’t require a negative test to enter either, such as Greece, Spain, Portugal and Morocco. If you aren’t sure which destinations you can visit, our Travel Specialists will be able to help you find out more.


4. Fewer destinations are now on the red list

While not technically a rule change, the latest travel update has helped expand the number of destinations you can visit from the UK.

Old rule

When the travel ban from the UK was first lifted in May and the traffic light system was revealed, there was still a limited number of destinations we could safely visit for a holiday.

New rule

Fast-forward to October and we have a wonderful amount of choice when it comes to planning an escape.

The latest countries to be removed from our red list include the Maldives and Turkey, while we can already enjoy some of our favourite spots across the Caribbean, such as Antigua and Barbados, plus destinations across Europe along with Canada, Dubai and Mauritius.


If you’d like to find out more about what the new travel rules mean for your holiday, contact us to speak to our expert Travel Specialists.

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