The UK is getting ready to allow quarantine-free travel for almost all countries, including South Africa, reports The Sunday Telegraph.
The good news comes after months of remaining on the UK’s Red List, much to the dismay of various South African tourism organisations and travellers. However, the changes, which are expected to be announced on Thursday, will see fully vaccinated travellers from South Africa, Brazil, Mexico and Indonesia be opened to quarantine-free travel, reports Business Tech.
The infamous Red List contains roughly 54 countries, but this is expected to be cut down to as little as nine by mid-October. The news comes on the back of a downgrade from adjusted lockdown level 2 to adjusted alert level 1 of COVID-19 restrictions and as South Africa emerges from the third wave of infections, reports News24.
During the State of the Nation Address by President Cyril Ramaphosa on Thursday, September 30, he stated that he had spoken to the UK’s prime minister Boris Johnson regarding South Africa being removed from the list.
“This has put us in a disadvantaged position since the United Kingdom is South Africa’s biggest source of tourism from the northern hemisphere and a significant trading partner,” Ramaphosa said.
According to the latest tourism and migration data published by Stats SA, South Africa’s economy has lost R790 million for every month it’s been on the red list.