The United Kingdom’s government is seeking to restart international travel safely and sustainably. The plan has been discussed by Britain’s Secretary of State Grant Shapps during the first meeting of the new Global Travel Taskforce.
The task force’s work and how international travel could be safely restored have been discussed by several UK government departments, transport operators, industry bodies, and travel agencies, VisaGuide.World reports.
The current plan includes developing a framework that would ease the international travel process by using the measures currently in place, such as the testing process and mandatory quarantine rules, and the recommendations from last year’s Global Travel Taskforce.
The United Kingdom’s government is also seeking to find new ways on how the current preventive measures, such as testing requirements and compulsory quarantine rules, could be used in order to facilitate the travel process at the same time manage the risk from the further spread of the COVID-19 pandemic and its new strains, identified by now in many foreign countries.
The taskforce will hand a report to the Prime Minister on April 12 and will be used to help British authorities to determine when and how to resume safe international travel not earlier than May 17, 2021.
However, the resumption of international travel will be depended on the following factor:
- The domestic and global epidemiological situation
- The location and prevalence of any ‘variants of concern.’
- The progress of vaccine rollout in the UK and abroad
“The UK’s leading vaccine rollout has created a wave of optimism, and, as a result, the Global Travel Taskforce is charged with exploring safe and secure ways to restart international travel when the time is right,” Secretary of State for Transport Grant Shapps pointed out.
He also stressed that the country would protect the vaccine’s progress and advanced testing program by planning the considered steps.
As yet, authorities in Britain have imposed many preventive measures in order to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission at the border, including the imposing of pre-departure testing requirements for all persons arriving in the country from aboard, as well as 10-day mandatory quarantine for persons wishing to enter the UK from “red list” of nations, in which the Coronavirus pandemic is roughly spread, and other additional measures.
Back in January, the UK government announced that all persons wishing to enter Britain would be obliged to follow the 10-day quarantine rule upon their arrival, as the country closed its travel corridors until February 15 due to an upsurge in the number of COVID-19 infections.
Such a decision was announced by the United Kingdom’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who emphasized that the decision was an additional measure imposed to protect the health of its citizens from the new contagious variants of the Coronavirus pandemic.
Figures published by Worldometers reveal that the United Kingdom is the fifth most affected country from the spread of the COVID-19 disease. The country has yet registered over 4,188,400 COVID-19 cases, and 123,296 persons died.
Based on the same source, a total of 3,005,720 persons have totally recovered from the deadly virus, while there are over 1,059,380 active cases.