Saturday, May 25, 2024
26 C
Brunei Town

UK to end all COVID-19 travel rules

LONDON (AP) – Britain’s government said on Monday all remaining coronavirus measures for travellers, including passenger locator forms and the requirement that unvaccinated people be tested for COVID-19 before and after their arrivals, will end on Friday.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said the changes will mean people “can travel just like in the good old days”.

The passenger locator forms require people to fill in travel details, their address in the United Kingdom (UK) and their vaccination status.

The news was welcomed by UK airlines which said they are beginning to ease mask wearing requirements on some routes.

The announcement came as coronavirus infections were rising in all four parts of the UK for the first time since the end of January. The latest government figures released on Monday showed that there were more than 444,000 new cases recorded in the past seven days, up 48 per cent from the week before.

The number of hospital patients with COVID-19 is also going up, though it is still well below the peak recorded in January. Scientists said many of the new infections in England were a more transmissible sub-variant of the Omicron variant.

Health Secretary Sajid Javid said the rise in infections was “to be expected” as people socialise more after all domestic coronavirus restrictions, including the legal requirement for anyone who tested positive to self-isolate, came to an end on February 24.

“We will continue monitoring and tracking potential new variants, and keep a reserve of measures which can be rapidly deployed if needed to keep us safe,” Javid said.

People in the arrivals area at Heathrow Airport in London during the coronavirus lockdown recently. PHOTO: AP