What are the travel rules now?

·2-min read

It is nearly impossible to keep up with changes to the rules for international travel during the pandemic.

Here the PA news agency answers 12 key questions about the current situation:

Passengers arrive at Heathrow
Travel rules are based on green, amber and red lists (Steve Parsons/PA)

– What system is being used?

A risk-based traffic light system determines the testing and quarantine requirements for arrivals into the UK.

– What happens if I arrive from a green list country?

That is the low-risk tier, so all travellers are exempt from quarantine.

– What about testing?

You have to buy one post-arrival PCR test, which typically costs around £65.

A general view of the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin
Germany is on the green list (Tim Goode/PA)

– Sounds ok. What destinations are on that list?

The green list includes countries and territories such as Austria, Barbados, Croatia, Germany, Gibraltar and Malta.

– What about hotspots such as Spain, Italy and Greece?

They are all on the amber list.

– What are the amber rules?

Fully vaccinated travellers are treated the same as those arriving from a green country.

– How about those who have not had both doses of a coronavirus vaccine?

They must self-isolate for 10 days, and take two post-arrival PCR tests.

A person being vaccinated
The travel rules for amber countries depend on vaccination status (Jane Barlow/PA)

– Is there a way of reducing the quarantine period?

You can buy a third test to be taken on or after day five.

If you get a negative result, you can leave self-isolation.

– What about the red list?

This is the one to avoid if possible.

Arrivals from red list countries must stay in a quarantine hotel for 10 days.

– How much does that cost?

The price for solo travellers rose from £1,750 to £2,285 earlier this month.

A passenger is escorted to the Holiday Inn hotel near Heathrow Airport
Staying in a quarantine hotel costs £2,285 (Jonathan Brady/PA)

– Ouch. What places are in the red tier?

There are currently 60 locations on the red list, such as Mexico, Pakistan, Turkey, and much of South America and Africa.

– Is there anything else I need to do?

Whatever country you arrive from, you must take a test in the three days before you travel and have filled out a passenger locator form.

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