UK holiday industry companies criticise government’s ‘caution’ over Covid travel restrictions

ITV News Consumer Editor Chris Choi looks ahead to what the traffic light system announcement could include

On Thursday, five of the biggest names in the UK holiday industry joined forces to claim government is using an «over abundance of caution» on international travel restrictions – that will «leave the country stuck on the runway».

This is a well-timed challenge, coming just a day ahead of when government is expected to issue its so called «green list» of overseas destinations deemed safe enough to visit without quarantine on return to England.

All eyes will be on just where we can go without having to isolate on return.

The costs of PCR tests might put people off travelling overseas to visit friends and family. Credit: PA

Meanwhile, the chief executives of easyJet, Jet2, BA, Heathrow and Manchester Airport say it’s illogical to insist that fully vaccinated passengers returning from those countries also need a PCR Covid test, that can cost above £100 per passenger.

But the government’s cautious approach has been backed by a group of over 60 MPs from different parties who said, earlier this week, that international travel should be discouraged to reduce the risk of new Covid variants.

The big fear is that the cost of the PCR tests needed will price many people out of holidays or visiting relatives overseas.

Today, the UK’s biggest holiday firm Tui announced a scheme offering the tests for as little as £20.

Other airlines and some travel agents also have schemes all aimed at bringing down those prices.

The consumer group Which? said: «The government must work to reduce the cost of testing across the board, rather than have consumers rely on a system that is currently fragmented and flawed.»

So, after many months of foreign holidays being just a fantasy, we expect the reality to become much clearer tomorrow.

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