The UK now has the most open borders in Europe.
Fully vaccinated travellers will be able to enter the UK unhindered from 11 February. For the unvaccinated, most restrictions have been lifted. They will not need to go into self-isolation – a negative PCR test taken two days before the trip is sufficient, and another test has to be taken after arrival.
Tim Alderslade, chief executive of airline industry body Airlines U.K., said it was “a landmark day.”
Nearly two years since the initial COVID restrictions were introduced, today’s announcement brings international travel towards near-normality for the fully vaccinated, and at last into line with hospitality and the domestic economy.
It makes the U.K. one of the most open countries in the world for international travel.
Johnson’s Conservative government is also lifting mask mandates and other restrictions and is relying on vaccinations and widespread testing to keep the virus in check.
Wearing masks in crowded places will remain a recommendation.
According to the WHO, the incidence of COVID-19 in the UK peaked in early January. On January 3, 218 thousand new cases of infection were detected in the UK per day. However, after that, the number of cases per day began to fall rapidly: on January 17, 74 thousand cases were detected in the country. The number of reported deaths from COVID-19 has also declined.