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Spain is not likely to be demoted to the ‘amber plus’ list any time soon, according to Government sources.
Fears have been building that the country could join France in the new category which made its debut on Friday, meaning that even double-jabbed travellers must quarantine upon their return.
France turned ‘amber plus’ in part because of the prevalence of the beta variant, though the latest data suggests that Spain and indeed Greece have an even higher incidence of the strain.
However, The Department of Transport has told the travel industry that France was a ‘one-off’ and that Spain won’t be added imminently, or at least until the next formal review on August 2, The Telegraph understands.
The beta (formally known as the ‘South African’) variant is thought to be less contagious than the delta variant, which is dominant in the UK, but more resistant to vaccines, especially the AstraZeneca jab.
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Covid checks for green and amber arrivals ‘dropped’
Passengers from green and amber list countries may no longer face Covid checks when arriving into England, it has been reported.
Leaked instructions to Border Force staff, reported by The Guardian, said border and customs officials will no longer routinely verify if returning travellers tested negative before departure or completed a passenger locator form.
The change, which reportedly came into effect on Monday, is aimed at reducing queue times at airports.
Under the current rules, all passengers into the UK must provide a negative Covid test taken before departure, regardless of where they are travelling from.
It comes as fully-vaccinated travellers are facing queue chaos at Heathrow airport after E-gates failed to recognise their status.