England is officially ‘Living with Covid’. As of the 24th February 2022 Prime Minister Boris Johnson has axed isolation rules for those who test positive and will be putting a stop to free testing from April 1st 2022. Day one sick pay and isolation payments will also stop on the 1st April.
In England, face coverings are no longer required by law however are to be worn in health and care settings including but not limited to GP surgeries, dental practices and care homes.
Regarding travel, anyone who is fully vaccinated returning to England will not be required to take a test before travelling or once they have arrived. Those who are not fully vaccinated will need to complete a Covid test two days before travelling to England and book a PCR test to be taken within two days of arrival. Both vaccinated and unvaccinated travellers are not required to quarantine on arrival but will need to complete a passenger locator form 48 hours before travelling to England.
Those looking to book a holiday abroad, now rules are easing, should be aware of the entry requirements and restrictions in place in the country they are travelling to. Many popular destinations including the USA, Greece and France still require proof of a negative COVID test on entry and have separate rules regarding quarantine depending on vaccination status. It is important that anyone travelling abroad checks the Foreign Travel Advice regularly prior to departure. Failure to provide the correct documentation at border control may result in travellers being denied entry; a situation which will not be covered by travel insurance.
Once abroad, the county’s restrictions should be followed. Masks are still required in some countries when inside or visiting public places. COVID passes may also need to be shown to gain entry into venues including bars and restaurants. Travellers should be prepared and have this information on hand.
It is also important to note that some governments require travellers to have had their second vaccination or a booster within a certain time frame before travelling to the country. This information can be found on the Foreign Travel Advice website.
Although it is no longer a requirement to isolate In England, most countries will not allow travellers to enter if they have tested positive prior to travel. To avoid loss of expenses, travellers should ensure they purchase a travel insurance policy that will cover them if they are unable to travel due to testing positive for Covid – this cover is not available on all polices so buyers will need to check the policy wording to ensure that the cover they have is suitable for their personal needs.
As the world begins to return to ‘normal’, there are some things people can continue to do to prevent the spread of the COVID virus; washing hands regularly and using hand sanitiser when entering/exiting places, covering their mouth or nose when coughing/sneezing and cleaning hands immediately after, avoiding touching produce in shops and supermarkets and giving others space.