All The 11 Countries From The COVID-19 Travel Red-List Are Being Removed By The UK This Wednesday



Image Credit – Economic Times


On Wednesday the UK government will remove all 11 countries from the COVID-19 travel red list. Health secretary Sajid Javid conveyed this message in the parliament.

Africa and Hong Kong are the first countries where the omicron variant was first detected. And to stop this community transmission of omicron variant, the UK government red-listed 11 countries in Africa, from late November.

The British government only allowed only UK citizens to arrive from those red-listed countries. And they had to be quarantined in a hotel room.

Javid said, ‘Now that there is community transmission of omicron in the UK and Omicron has spread so widely across the world, the travel red list is now less effective in slowing the incursion of Omicron from abroad’.

He added, ‘we will be removing all 11 countries from the travel red list effective from 4 a.m. tomorrow morning.’

The 11 red-listed countries included Angola, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, South Africa, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

London’s Heathrow Airport said that due to over restrictions the airport saw many business travelers canceling their tickets. That is why many business companies were requesting the UK government to reduce the restrictions.

All the travelers still need either a PCR or a Rapid lateral flow test, done a maximum of 48 hours before departure. A measure Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said,’ would be reviewed in the first week of January.

Chief executive of travel association ABTA, Mark Tanzer appreciated the removal of the red list but also added that testing should have been discarded as well.

He stated that ‘With the testing measure now extending over the Christmas and New Year period, and the industry quickly approaching peak-booking season for summer 2022, travel businesses are facing a very serious situation’.

He goes further adding, ‘Consumer confidence in travel has suffered a significant setback, which will outlast these restrictions’.

During this time of red listing these 11 countries, the British Government had to pay thousands of pounds to quarantine all these people in well-equipped hotels. But people had faced several issues in their time of quarantine, posting them online.

From lack of accommodation to paying high charges to provide self-isolation, the UK Arrivals had to face numerous issues. And some travelers had paid thousands of pounds just to confirm their quarantine stay.

This chaotic situation very much persuaded Mr. Sajid Javid to remove the red-listed countries on an immediate basis.