England scraps quarantine for 50 countries - but not US

London: Travellers from more than 50 countries including France, Italy and Spain -- but not the United States -- can stop self-isolating on arrival in England from July 10, the UK government said Friday.

Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will each announce their own separate rules depending on how they work in England.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said the change, which reverses a two-week quarantine policy imposed in June, would lead to the “reopening of the nation”.

Shapps told the BBC that a full list of “50-plus” countries would be published later on Friday.

Under the new rules, a traffic-light system -- red, amber and green -- would be used for different countries depending on their prevalence of the coronavirus.

Travellers from the green and amber countries will no longer have to self-isolate on arrival.

The amber countries will have reciprocal arrangements in place with England, while the green countries are deemed to be safer than England, such as New Zealand.

The amber countries include France, Italy and Spain, which are among the most popular summer holiday destinations for Britons.

But the United States and Greece, another popular travel destination, will be designated with a red light, which requires 14 days of self-isolation.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s father Stanley created a UK media scandal this week by flying to his Greek holiday home via Bulgaria to avoid the restrictions.

Johnson refused to comment on the trip when asked about it during a radio interview Friday.

“I really think you ought to raise that with him,” Johnson said of his father. “I am not going to get into the details of family conversation.” - AFP