Closed petition Extend rules for UK travel for vaccinated travellers to unvaccinated travellers

From 4th October 2021 and onwards, vaccinated and unvaccinated travellers are treated differently. Unvaccinated travellers are required to take expensive PRC tests and isolate for 10 days. The same rules should apply to vaccinated and unvaccinated travellers.

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Data has shown that both vaccinated and unvaccinated people can contract and spread covid19. Also the efficacy of the vaccination reduces over time. Therefore, we believe there is no justification for treating vaccinated and unvaccinated travellers differently, requiring the unvaccinated to take expensive PRC tests and isolate for 10 days. Unvaccinated travellers are treated as 2nd class citizens because of their choices over their own body.

This petition is closed All petitions run for 6 months

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Government responded

This response was given on 15 February 2022

The Government has eased international travel rules, resulting in the UK now having one of the most open and streamlined COVID-19 border regimes in the world.

On 24 January, the Secretary of State for Transport announced a number of changes to the international travel regime which came into force on 11 February. These changes mean that the UK has one of the most open and streamlined COVID-19 border regimes in the world, in addition to having one of the most open economies and societies in the world.

The changes we implemented on 11 February reflect the progress made through the UK’s vaccine and booster rollout. It means the Government was able to go one step further in its effort to reopen the international travel and tourism sector.

Our policy on vaccinated and unvaccinated travellers reflects the fact that there continues to be a benefit from differentiating requirements by vaccination status at the border given that vaccination reduces the risk of infection, severe disease and hospitalisation.

As a result of the changes introduced on 11 February, the Government has removed all testing measures for eligible vaccinated travellers (which includes all under 18s) arriving in the UK, with the only requirement being to complete a Passenger Locator Form (PLF). The UK is not alone in removing testing for eligible vaccinated arrivals. Countries such as Ireland, Germany and Switzerland also have no testing for those they consider as being vaccinated arrivals.

The Government has also eased the travel restrictions for those who do not qualify as eligible vaccinated. Since 4am on 11 February, passengers who do not qualify as eligible vaccinated do not need to take a Day 8 PCR test or self-isolate when they arrive in the UK. Such passengers are still required to take a pre-departure test, complete a PLF and take a post-arrival PCR test on or before day 2, enabling us to continue sequencing any positive cases and monitoring for any Variants of Concern.

These changes will deliver a simpler and more straightforward system of international travel that aims to provide stability for travellers and the travel industry throughout 2022. We keep all our COVID-19 measures under regular review and our goal remains to return to restriction free international travel for all as soon as it is safe to do so.

Whilst public health is a devolved matter, the Government works closely with the Devolved Administrations on any changes to international travel.

Department for Transport