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Red list update ‘first true boost’ for Scottish travel sector

The president of the SPAA has welcomed changes to the government’s red list and testing requirements, describing them as “the first true boost” for the Scottish industry since the start of the pandemic.

Joanne Dooey also hailed moves towards a four-nations approach covering the UK, and clarity on aspects including the age limits for travellers classed as children.

She said: “Changes to the red list and testing which have been announced by the UK government are the first true boost for the travel industry in Scotland since travel ground to a halt in March 2020.

“The UK foreign office has also lifted its advice against non- essential travel to 32 destinations, so there is a new, joined up approach across government and across all four home nations which is very welcomed. This will build customer confidence.

“[The reduced red list] opens up a world of travel for the first time in 19 months. This is the first substantive positive move towards getting travel moving again not only for holiday makers but for those who are desperate to visit friends and family and for Scottish businesses which trade overseas.”

Dooey said the industry now needed clarity on the reopening of the US border and a specific date for the move from PCR to lateral flow tests for day-two checks.

She added: “We have already seen an increase recently in enquiries for travel following the removal of the pre-departure test in resort. So, we eagerly await the potential change from PCR to lateral flow test on day two following return, and we hope that the Scottish government will align itself with the UK.

“We also hope for implementation of this change by the end of October. It’s good to see clarity on the age of ‘children’ with all Scots under 18 being categorised as children.”

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