Brussels/London: The European Union has approved a vaccine passport system that will allow tourists to visit member nations without needing to test or quarantine, providing they have had their final dose of an EU-approved jab two weeks beforehand. The EU approved vaccines are Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson.
Hours after EU approved Covid passports, five million Britons booked holidays to Europe. British airline Ryanair is offering £5 flights to Greece, Italy, France and Spain.
EU holiday travel is permitted from low risk countries which have an infection rate of less than 100 cases per 100,000 people. The UK, with 44 cases per 100,000, and the US, with 35 per 100,000, fall into this category. However, there are still fears of people from amber or green list countries coming into contact with those from red list nations.
But with only Portugal on the UK's 'green list', PM Boris Johnson has said Britons should not be heading to Europe, warning anyone flouting 10-day quarantine or testing that they will be punished heavily. Said Johnson: 'You should not be going to an amber list country on holiday. If you travel to an amber list country for any emergency, any extreme reason that you have to, when you come back, you not only have to pay for all the tests but you have to self-isolate for 10 days - we will invigilate, we are invigilating it, and people who fail to obey the quarantine can face fines of up to £10,000'.
British Health Minister Lord Bethell too has claimed travel anywhere abroad was 'dangerous' and foreign trips were 'not for this year'. But millions of Britons have already taken advantage of cheaper prices and booked to travel abroad to 'amber list' destinations this summer, with the majority planning to head to Spain, France, Greece and Italy, according to The Independent. Many are gambling on the destinations turning 'green' by the time they are due to go.