UK traffic light system adds to Covid-19 travel confusion
Research by UK-based travel agency Butter found that the traffic light tier system for foreign holidays is adding to the Covid confusion of UK holidaymakers
Currently, just a handful of countries sit on the government-approved green list, allowing holidaymakers the opportunity to travel without needing to quarantine either in a hotel or at home on their return. Although the travel ban has been lifted, the government sowed further seeds of confusion when it released an update, warning holidaymakers against travel to amber list destinations unless absolutely necessary.
No surprise then, that Butter’s latest gauge of sentiment found that half of us find the current traffic light system confusing, with 51 per cent struggling to work out where they stand when it comes to where they can travel. This confusion has also added to the already trickier task of travelling abroad, with Butter finding that just a third of holidaymakers are completely aware of what is required from them when travelling to green, amber, or red list destination.
Majority think government should ban travel to amber list destinations
Thirty-eight per cent were partly confident about their understanding of restrictions, while as many as 31 per cent were unaware of the need to quarantine, as well as other requirements such as providing a negative Covid test when travelling. However, Butter’s research also suggests that this government-induced confusion may be completely unnecessary to begin with. When asked if they think the government should ban travel to red and amber list destinations, a notable 86 per cent answered yes, preferring there to be just one list of destinations to which they can travel.
Timothy Davis, Co-Founder and CEO of Butter, commented: “We’re living in very tricky times at present and it’s easy to criticise the government’s handling of the pandemic. What is reassuring is that they are at least trying to encourage travel abroad this summer, although many remain hopeful that we will see more destinations transition from amber to green.
“We’ve already seen a notable jump in the number of people choosing to jet off immediately in case the travel ban should be reintroduced later in the year, spreading the cost even after they’ve travelled. This has allowed them to secure some summer sun without the financial constraints of paying the full balance upfront.”
Meanwhile, ABTA’s Chief Executive has advised travellers to follow FDCO travel advice after confusion over the UK’s traffic light system has led to travellers booking trips to amber destinations.