Ministers announce Covid testing plan to reopen travel from England

Travellers from England could take overseas holidays from May 17 to a small number of countries but will have to pay about £100 on their return for a Covid-19 test.

Transport secretary Grant Shapps will on Friday confirm plans in England for a “traffic light system” for foreign travel, but each option will involve PCR tests upon return to try to track new variants of the virus entering the country.

Unlike the quicker lateral flow tests which detect a protein antigen on the virus’s surface, the more accurate and expensive PCR tests look for Covid-19’s genetic material.

Under the government’s plans May 17 remains the earliest possible date for foreign holidays to resume. Officials hope that a small number of…

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