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Traffic light system

The government has announced details of the traffic light system in place for international travel in the Summer of 2021.

The system comprises three categories of destination country or region, known as green, amber and red, each with a set of restrictions, as set out below.

  • Passenger Locator Form? Yes
  • Pre-departure test before UK arrival? Yes
  • Managed quarantine at hotel? No
  • Self-isolation? No
  • Test to Release? No
  • PCR testing? On or before day two of arrival into the UK
  • Further PCR testing? No

Arrivals from green list countries need to have taken a pre-departure test as well as a PCR test on or before day two of their arrival back into England – but will not need to quarantine on return (unless they receive a positive result) or take any additional tests.

  • Anguilla (moves to green watchlist on 30 June)
  • Antarctica/British Antarctic Territory (moves to green watchlist on 30 June)
  • Antigua and Barbuda (moves to green watchlist on 30 June)
  • Australia
  • Balearic Islands (moves to green watchlist on 30 June)
  • Barbados (moves to green watchlist on 30 June)
  • Bermuda (moves to green watchlist on 30 June)
  • British Indian Ocean Territory (moves to green watchlist on 30 June)
  • British Virgin Islands (moves to green watchlist on 30 June)
  • Brunei
  • Cayman Islands (moves to green watchlist on 30 June)
  • Falkland Islands
  • Faroes
  • Gibraltar
  • Grenada (moves to green watchlist on 30 June)
  • Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha
  • Iceland
  • Israel and Jerusalem – at risk of moving to AMBER
  • Madeira (moves to green watchlist on 30 June)
  • Malta (moves to green on 30 June)
  • New Zealand
  • Pitcairn, Henderson, Ducie and Oeno Islands (moves to green watchlist on 30 June)
  • Singapore
  • South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands
  • St Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha
  • Turks and Caicos Islands (moves to green watchlist on 30 June)

  • Passenger Locator Form? Yes
  • Pre-departure test before UK arrival? Yes
  • Managed quarantine at hotel? No
  • Self-isolation? Ten days
  • Test to Release? Yes
  • PCR testing? On or before day two of arrival into the UK
  • Further PCR testing? Yes – on day eight

Arrivals from amber list countries will need to quarantine for a period of ten days and take a pre-departure test, and a PCR test on days two and eight (with the option for Test to Release on day five to end self-isolation early).

Amber list countries and destinations: Akrotiri and Dhekelia, Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Armenia, Aruba, Austria, Azerbaijan, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bermuda, Bhutan, Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba, Bosnia and Herzegovina, British Antarctic Territory, British Indian Ocean Territory, British Virgin Islands, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Cayman Islands, Central African Republic, Chad, China, Comoros, Congo, Cook Islands, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia,  Cuba, Curaçao, Cyprus, Czechia, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Egypt (moves to the RED list on Tuesday, 8 June at 04:00), El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Estonia, Fiji, Finland, France, French Polynesia, Gabon, The Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece (including islands), Greenland, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau , Haiti, Honduras, Hong Kong, Hungary, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kiribati, Kosovo, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Latvia, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macao, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mali, Malta, Marshall Islands, Martinique, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mayotte, Mexico, Micronesia, Moldova, Monaco, Mongolia, Montenegro, Montserrat, Morocco, Myanmar (Burma), Nauru, Netherlands, New Caledonia, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, North Korea, North Macedonia, Norway, The Occupied Palestinian Territories, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Poland, Portugal, Réunion, Romania, Russia, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, South Korea, South Sudan, Spain (including the Balearics and Canary Islands), St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Martin and St Barthélemy, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Taiwan, Tajikistan, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Togo, Tonga, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, Turks and Caicos Islands, Tuvalu, Uganda, Ukraine, USA, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu, Vietnam, Wallis and Futuna, Western Sahara, Yemen.


  • Passenger Locator Form? Yes
  • Pre-departure test before UK arrival? Yes
  • Managed quarantine at hotel? Yes
  • Self-isolation? Ten days
  • Test to Release? No
  • PCR testing? On or before day two of arrival into the UK
  • Further PCR testing? Yes – on day eight

Travel from red list countries continues to be subject to restrictions currently in place for ‘red list’ countries which include a ten-day stay in a managed quarantine hotel, pre-departure testing and PCR testing on days two and eight.

Link to red list article

  • Afghanistan
  • Angola
  • Argentina
  • Bahrain
  • Bangladesh
  • Bolivia
  • Botswana
  • Brazil
  • Burundi
  • Cape Verde
  • Chile
  • Colombia
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • Dominican Republic (moves to red list on 30 June)
  • Ecuador
  • Egypt
  • Eritrea (moves to red list on 30 June)
  • Eswatini
  • Ethiopia
  • French Guiana
  • Guyana
  • Haiti (moves to red list on 30 June)
  • India
  • Kenya
  • Lesotho
  • Malawi
  • Maldives
  • Mongolia (moves to red list on 30 June)
  • Mozambique
  • Namibia
  • Nepal
  • Oman
  • Pakistan
  • Panama
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Qatar
  • Rwanda
  • Seychelles
  • Somalia
  • South Africa
  • Sri Lanka
  • Sudan
  • Suriname
  • Tanzania
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Tunisia (moves to red list on 30 June)
  • Turkey
  • Uganda (moves to red list on 30 June)
  • United Arab Emirates (UAE)
  • Uruguay
  • Venezuela
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

Restrictions will be formally reviewed on 28 June 2021 to take account of the domestic and international health picture, and to see whether current measures could be rolled back. Further formal reviews will take place at checkpoints no later than 31 July and 1 October 2021.

We advise checking with gov.uk for the latest, most up to date information on the restrictions and make up of each list.

The traffic light system has been put in place in order to facilitate non-essential travel in the Summer months of 2020. The restrictions do not necessarily impact business travellers. For further clarification and details, please contact your GTM Account Manager.

Global Travel Taskforce sets out framework

A framework to chart the safe return of international travel has been set out today (9 April 2021) by Transport Secretary Grant Shapps.

A traffic light system, which will categorise countries based on risk alongside the restrictions required for travel, will be set up to protect the public and the vaccine rollout from international Covid-19 variants.

Key factors in the assessment will include:

  • the percentage of their population that have been vaccinated
  • the rate of infection
  • the prevalence of variants of concern
  • the country’s access to reliable scientific data and genomic sequencing

The report, produced by the Global Travel Taskforce, shows how international leisure travel could resume from 17 May 2021 at the earliest, in an accessible and affordable way. This includes the removal of the permission to travel form – meaning passengers would no longer need to prove they have a valid reason to leave the country.

The risks posed by Covid-19 variants remain significant, and restrictions for inbound passengers, such as 10-day managed quarantine, home quarantine and stringent testing will remain in place, but will apply to people differently depending on whether the destination visited is categorised as ‘green’, ‘amber’ or ‘red’.

  • Green: arrivals will need to take a pre-departure test as well as a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test on or before day 2 of their arrival back into the UK – but will not need to quarantine on return (unless they receive a positive result) or take any additional tests, halving the cost of tests on their return from holiday
  • Amber: arrivals will need to quarantine for a period of 10 days and take a pre-departure test, and a PCR test on day 2 and day 8 with the option for Test to Release on day 5 to end self-isolation early
  • Red: arrivals will be subject to restrictions currently in place for ‘red list’ countries which include a 10-day stay in a managed quarantine hotel, pre-departure testing and PCR testing on days 2 and 8

Testing remains an essential part of protecting public health as restrictions begin to ease, with all arrivals who are not exempt required to book a pre-departure, day 2 and day 8 test before travelling.

Arrivals travelling from ‘red list’ countries should book a quarantine package before departure, and arrivals from ‘amber’ and ‘green’ countries will be required to book test packages before travelling from one of the government’s approved list of providers.

Testing post-arrival remains an important tool in wider measures to manage the risk of imported cases allowing the monitoring of positive tests and ensure people isolate, as well as identifing and genomically sequencing variants of concern.

It is too early to predict which countries will be on which list over the summer, and the government continues to consider a range of factors to inform the restrictions placed on them. The government has committed to set out by early May which countries will fall into each category, as well as confirming whether international leisure travel can resume from 17 May 2021.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said:

International travel is vital – it boosts businesses and underpins the UK economy – but more than that, it brings people together, connects families who have been kept apart, and allows us to explore new horizons.

The framework announced today will help allow us to reopen travel safely and sustainably, ensure we protect our hard-won achievements on the vaccine roll out, and offer peace of mind to both passengers and industry as we begin to take trips abroad once again.

The UK will also play a leading role in the development of international standards around a digital travel certification system. The Department for Transport (DfT) is working across government to consider the role certification could play in facilitating outbound travel, for those countries which have systems in place. Work also continues to develop a system that would facilitate travel certification for inbound international travel.

To give passengers more certainty when travelling, a ‘green watchlist’ will be introduced to help identify countries most at risk of moving from ‘green’ to ‘amber’. The watchlist will provide greater assurance for those who wish to travel abroad.

While the watchlist will warn travellers of potential changes in advance, the government will not hesitate to act immediately should the data show that countries risk ratings have changed.

The allocation of countries will be kept under review and respond to emerging evidence, with a particular focus on variants of concern.

Restrictions will be formally reviewed on 28 June 2021 to take account of the domestic and international health picture, and to see whether current measures could be rolled back. Further formal reviews will take place at checkpoints no later than 31 July and 1 October 2021.

To ensure the UK’s borders remain safe and efficient when passenger flows increase, the government has also announced plans to digitise the passenger locator form, integrating it into the UK border system and enabling checks to take place at e-gates ‘by autumn 2021’.

To further boost consumer confidence, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) will be given additional enforcement powers to act on airlines that have breached consumer rights, with a dedicated consultation on how to use additional tools to enforce consumer rights expected later this year.

Global Travel Management will continue to provide updates to customers via this website, the GTM Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn pages and regular email notifications.

You can download the Global Travel Taskforce report here and access the appendix to the report here.

Negative Covid test required for passengers arriving in England or Scotland

Grant Shapps, the Secretary of State for Transport, announced the introduction of a new requirement for anyone travelling to England. 

He said,

If you are coming here from anywhere, whether you’re a Brit or a foreign national, then you’ll need to take a Covid test up to 72 hours before you come here.

If the pre-journey Covid test is positive, passengers will be required to quarantine, under the laws of the country from which they are travelling, until they recover.

Passengers will still be required to quarantine for ten days (which can be reduced using the test to release programme) on arrival in England. The quarantine rule does not apply when travelling from countries on the Government’s Safe Travel Corridor list.

UPDATE

The requirement for inbound passengers to show a negative Covid test before travelling to England, from a foreign country has been pushed back to 04:00 on Monday, 18 January.

New Guidance for Passengers published

The Department for Transport has published new aviation guidance, setting out measures operators should put in place to protect staff and passengers.

Grant Shapps, Secretary of State for Transport

The guidance, produced by the government’s International Aviation Taskforce, in collaboration with the industry, also provides advice for passengers on how to travel safely and on how to follow social distancing measures at each stage of their journey.

The guidance focuses extensively on the health and safety of passengers and staff and in line with international best practice, is the culmination of an extensive programme of engagement between the government, aviation industry and public health experts. It outlines a framework for the industry to operate from once travel restrictions are lifted and when it is safe to do so, helping to restore jobs, trade, and opportunities for travel.

The guidance to passengers covers all aspects of the travel experience, from checking the public health requirements before booking a flight, to navigating the airport safely and boarding the flight or leaving the airport.

Grant Shapps, said:

[The] guidance is a positive next step towards ensuring a safer and more sustainable aviation sector. The government’s advice currently remains to avoid all non-essential travel, but today we are taking the necessary steps to ensure a framework is in place for the aviation industry to bounce back when it is safe for restrictions on travel to be lifted.

Tim Hawkins said:

Tim Hawkins, Chief Strategy Officer of Manchester Airports Group

This new guidance provides the basis for the restart and recovery of the UK aviation industry – it offers clear information for us, our passengers and our airlines on the steps needed to create a safe travel experience.

The guidance is the result of strong collaboration between government and the aviation industry, drawing on advice from independent medical and scientific experts who have looked specifically at what safety measures are needed at each stage of the travel process.

With similar protocols being adopted in other countries, and a targeted approach to reopening travel to low-risk countries, we will have the elements in place to get our economy moving again and protect jobs throughout the whole aviation supply chain.

Practical advice includes wearing face coverings when in the airport, washing hands regularly after touching any surfaces, checking in all baggage including hand luggage, and remaining seated as much as possible during the flight.

The guidance to operators will also support staff by promoting safe practices and workplaces. This includes extensive cleaning of aircraft, increasing the availability of handwashing and hand sanitiser facilities, reducing face-to-face interactions with passengers, and introducing protocols for symptomatic passengers and staff.

The guidance to passengers is available to read, here.

UK Aviation Commits to Net Zero Carbon Emissions by 2050

Members of the UK Sustainable Aviation coalition have united behind a commitment to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050. At an event with Transport Secretary Grant Shapps MP in Central London, aviation industry executives signed a pledge committing to cut carbon emissions to zero by 2050.

This is based on a thorough review of the opportunities to cut aviation emissions and forms a central pillar of a new “Decarbonisation Road-Map: A Path to Net Zero” published by Sustainable Aviation. This sets out where reductions can come from, including through smarter flight operations, new aircraft and engine technology, modernising UK airspace, the use of sustainable aviation fuels, and high-quality market-based policy measures.

With these actions, the UK will be able to grow passenger numbers by 70% – in line with current projections – whilst reducing net emissions from 30 million tonnes of CO2 per year today down to zero.

A “Sustainable Aviation Fuels Road-Map” has also been released today alongside the Decarbonisation Road Map, which identifies the specific role that sustainable aviation fuels could play in meeting this commitment. It forecasts that the UK could become a world leader in developing sustainable aviation fuels, which could meet 32% of the nation’s demand for aviation fuel by 2050.

Neil Robinson, Chair of Sustainable Aviation, said:

Climate change is a clear and pressing issue for people, businesses and governments across the world. We know aviation emissions will increase if decisive action is not taken, and that’s why UK aviation today commits to achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050, through an international approach, working with governments around the world and through the UN.

The UK is well positioned to become one of the leaders in the green technologies of the future, including sustainable aviation fuels and electric flight, creating highly-skilled and well-paid jobs in the process, and we look forward to working in partnership with Ministers to help realise these opportunities.

Rt. Hon Grant Shapps MP, Secretary of State for Transport, said:

The fight against climate change is one of the greatest challenges facing the modern world, but the aviation sector’s commitment today is a huge step forward in creating a greener future.

Aviation has a crucial role to play in reducing carbon emissions, and with the help of new technologies, renewable fuels and our continued international co-operation through the UN agency, the International Civil Aviation Organisation, we’ll be able to strike that balance, creating a greener and cleaner future.


PM confirms HS2 will go ahead alongside “revolution in local transport”

HS2 will go ahead alongside radical improvements to local transport networks all across the country, the PM confirmed today.

In a statement to Parliament he set out that after careful consideration of the independent Oakervee review, the decision has been taken to proceed with HS2.

Alongside this, the PM outlined his vision for “a revolution in local transport to ensure that towns and cities in every region have the modern, joined up network needed to fire up economic growth”.

A multi-billion pound package to transform buses and cycling is set to deliver at least 4,000 new “Zero Emission” buses, higher frequency services (including evenings and weekends), more affordable, simpler fares, and new priority schemes to make routes more efficient. The £5 billion in new funding will also help build over 250 miles of new, high quality separated cycle routes, and dozens of ‘Mini-Holland’ schemes to make town centres safer for cyclists and pedestrians.

The PM also pledged further upgrades for local connections including:

  • Cutting congestion and boosting the local road network across the country by accelerating local schemes to the next stage of development, from Hartlepool and Cheadle in the North to Melksham to Salisbury in the South West
  • Upgrading Bristol East Junction station to tackle a major pinch point in the South West rail network, so that passengers can travel in and out of Bristol more easily
  • Taking forward work to improve the A1 north of Newcastle, strengthening the link to the Scottish Border

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:

The Prime Minster made a statement to Parliament this afternoon

Delivering better, faster and more reliable transport connections is the way to close the opportunity gap across this country.

But it is not and never will be an ‘either/or’ between big projects and local services.

Dramatic improvements to local transport and the decision to proceed with HS2 will shift this country’s centre of gravity away from the capital and transform connectivity between our towns and cities.

I am drawing a clear line under the mismanagement of the past – HS2 must be delivered more efficiently and cost-effectively so that communities feel its benefits more quickly, particularly those in the North.

Douglas Oakervee’s independent review into HS2 has today been published in full. After thorough analysis of the benefits and impacts of the project, work on Phase 1 (the route between London and Birmingham) is set to start in April. Government will revive the legislation to deliver Phase 2a (connecting Birmingham to Crewe) as soon as possible so that preparation works can move forward.

The Prime Minister told Parliament that he is committed to Phase 2b of the project, extending high-speed rail from the West Midlands to the North. In order to work out how best to deliver Northern Powerhouse Rail and Phase 2b more effectively, government will draw up an integrated plan for rail in the North, informed by an assessment from the National Infrastructure Commission.

This will work to identify the most effective sequencing of all relevant investments in the north, and look at how the two schemes can work together alongside wider investment in transport for the North and Midlands. It will also have a focus on ensuring that lessons are learned from Phase 1 of HS2 to drive down costs.

Recognising that better East-West connections are a priority for local leaders, the Government will look at how best to accelerate the delivery of Northern Powerhouse Rail, including looking at options for a new delivery body. The decision to proceed with HS2 is accompanied by a clear commitment to drawing a line under past failures of leadership, transparency and cost control, and a recognition that to go forward, things must change.

The PM outlined a number of measures to instil discipline and financial order to the project, including:

  • Appointing a dedicated minister with specific oversight and accountability for HS2
  • Redefining HS2 Ltd’s role so that they can give maximum focus to successfully delivering Phase 1 and 2a, and making new delivery arrangements for Euston station and the design and construction of Phase 2b, to ensure better value for money and on time delivery
  • Improved transparency through regular reports to Parliament from the responsible minister

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said:

I’ve been clear that we needed all the facts to decide the way forward with HS2. Fully informed by a comprehensive and detailed scrutiny of all the facts, now is the time to drive HS2 forward, alongside a ‘High Speed North’ plan to give the North and Midlands the capacity and connectivity it vitally needs.

We are also clear that the project must reform and improve, with clearer accountability and transparency to ensure its incredible benefits are matched by a tight control of costs.

Our vision for increasing opportunity and prosperity across every part of our country doesn’t stop with HS2. We achieve that not only through investing in critical national projects to transform journeys in the future, but delivering on the vital connections people rely on today to ensure no community is left behind.

Douglas Oakervee, Chair of the independently-led review into HS2, said:

I am proud of the work that the Review Panel has carried out. The Review’s Report is a comprehensive appraisal of a challenging project. I believe the recommendations help offer it a way forward, a means of increasing scrutiny and oversight, protecting the interests of passengers and taxpayers, and rebuilding confidence in an important piece of critical national infrastructure which will do much to rebalance the economy.

I am delighted that a decision on the project has been made, and it is now the job of the government to take this ambitious project forward.

Important advice for Flybe passengers

UPDATE: 11:25 15 January 2019

Following an intervention by Cabinet ministers Grant Shapps (Transport Secretary), Andrea Leadsom (Business Secretary) and Sajid Javid (Chancellor), the Government has confirmed a package of measures aimed at ensuring the continued service of all Flybe routes and flights.

As a result of this deal, Global Travel Management can confirm that all customers will continue to be able to book Flybe services, either online (using GTM Online) or offline (via GTM’s teams of travel consultants). 

All usual forms of payment are accepted for Flybe flights booked through Global Travel Management.  And, of course, all trips will be managed and associated services such as additional flights, hotel bookings, taxis, car parking, rail journeys, etc, continue to be provided.

Chancellor of the Exchequer Sajid Javid said:

I welcome Flybe’s confirmation that they will continue to operate as normal, safeguarding jobs in UK and ensuring flights continue to serve communities across the whole of the UK. The reviews we are announcing today will help level up our economy. They will ensure that regional connections not only continue but flourish in the years to come – so that every nation and region can fulfil its potential.

Business Secretary Andrea Leadsom said:

I am delighted that we have managed to reach an agreement with Flybe shareholders to keep the company in operation, ensuring that regions across the country can continue to be connected. My department and others across government have worked tirelessly in an incredibly short timeframe. This will be welcome news for Flybe, their customers and dedicated employees, as well as those in the supply chain. We will continue to work with Flybe and regional operators to find a sustainable long term future.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said:

I am delighted that we have been able to work closely with Flybe to ensure Europe’s largest regional airline is able to continue providing their valued services, connecting communities across the UK. The Department for Transport will undertake an urgent review into how we can level up the country by strengthening regional connectivity and will look at all the options that we have to make sure our airports can continue to play an important role in driving economic growth, creating jobs and greening aviation, across the country.

Mark Anderson, CEO of Flybe said:

Flybe is made up of an incredible team of people, serving millions of loyal customers who rely on the vital regional connectivity that we provide. This is a positive outcome for the UK and will allow us to focus on delivering for our customers and planning for the future.

Lucien Farrell, Chairman Connect Airways said:

We are very encouraged with recent developments, especially the Government’s recognition of the importance of Flybe to communities and businesses across the UK and the desire to strengthen regional connectivity.   As a result, the shareholder consortium has committed to keep Flybe flying with additional funding alongside Government initiatives. 

If you have any questions with regards to booking on Flybe, please contact your GTM Account Manager.


UPDATE: 10:35 14 January 2019

Flybe continues to operate all of its services, domestically and internationally. Flights can be booked on all routes, through Global Travel Management. However, passengers may choose to pay for their flights using credit cards, in order to benefit from the provisions of section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act should the airline fail.

The Government is holding meetings today in which a package of measures will be discussed, designed to help the airline.

The Prime Minister has confirmed:

We see the importance of Flybe in delivering connectivity across the whole of the United Kingdom.

Flybe has tweeted to confirm that it “continues to provide great service”. You can follow Flybe on Twitter

Original article, posted 13 January:

Due to the current uncertainty of Flybe’s future viability as a company, GTM recommends that, with immediate effect, customers should only purchase their tickets using a credit card which offers protection from airline failures.

Should Flybe cease operations – and we have no inside knowledge that this will be the case – any passenger whose ticket is purchased by cash or invoice, is unlikely to see a full refund of their ticket (as they will become an unsecured creditor). Hence, our recommendation that with immediate effect, tickets are purchased using a valid credit card.

We will, of course, endeavour to keep all customers updated as soon as we know more.