All 11 countries on the travel red list will be removed as the system is “less effective in slowing the incursion” of the Omicron variant, Sajid Javid has announced.
The health secretary told the Commons the countries will be removed from 4am on Wednesday, so passengers from those nations will no longer have to isolate in a government-approved quarantine hotel for two weeks at the cost of £2,285.
He added that the temporary testing measures for everyone arriving in the UK from overseas will remain for now.
Mr Javid said he has asked for “urgent advice” about whether people currently in hotel quarantine can be released.
He said in the past they have been required to fulfil their quarantine period but indicated he did not want to see that this time.
When asked whether people currently in hotel quarantine would be reimbursed, Mr Javid said: “I would love to stand here right now and just say that is the case, but there are some issues that need to be resolved, and they are urgently being looked at.
“I hope we can say something more on this as a government, potentially even as early as today.”