Published on : Wednesday, July 28, 2021
The British government is expected to approve the reopening of England’s doors to double-vaccinated tourists from the EU and the US, which is likely to bring relief to the country’s leisure sector.
Whitehall officials said that the UK ministers, led by chancellor Rishi Sunak, had argued that it is safe to start readmitting foreign tourists without any quarantine if they had received two jabs.
Sunak was especially worried that tourist destinations like London would lose out to locations like Paris and Rome now that the EU had decided to admit US visitors.
“It could take effect from as early as next week,” said one Whitehall official briefed on the ministerial discussions. “Rishi has been leading the way on this.” Declining corona virus case numbers in the UK has now made this decision easier.
Grant Shapps, transport secretary, and Oliver Dowden, culture secretary, have also argued for travel recommencement in England. The decision to reopen England to EU tourists turned easier since the bloc started issuing citizens with digital health passes from the beginning of this month. Opening up to double-vaccinated US travelers is more complicated since the American system of proof is paper-based and organized at a state level.
However, government officials said that the ministers are confident that the US travelers with an American passport and a paper certificate would guarantee their admittance.
The White House has said that it would maintain its Covid travel bans in the near future on a range of countries, including the UK, EU nations and China, due to the spread of the more transmissible Delta corona virus variant.
Ministers have hoped that the unilateral move to welcome back US tourists to England will be “a gesture of goodwill” that could speed up the full reopening of transatlantic travel.
Tags: british government