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COVID tests to end for arrivals into England, PM announces

Illustrative: Arriving passengers walk past a sign in the arrivals area at Heathrow Airport in London, Jan. 26, 2021. (Matt Dunham/AP)
Illustrative: Arriving passengers walk past a sign in the arrivals area at Heathrow Airport in London, Jan. 26, 2021. (Matt Dunham/AP)

The UK government is set to drop compulsory coronavirus tests for those arriving in England, Prime Minister Boris Johnson says, as he continues to lift curbs amid declining infections.

The government currently requires British and other citizens arriving into England from most countries to take a lateral flow test for COVID-19 within two days.

Johnson, who last week announced the easing of almost all domestic restrictions after several weeks of falling case rates, notes the change would only apply to fully vaccinated individuals.

“To show that this country is open for business, open for travellers, you will see changes so that people arriving no longer have to take tests if they’ve been vaccinated,” he tells reporters on a hospital visit.

Johnson did not specify a date for the change. He notes that this will apply only to arrivals who have been “double vaccinated.”

The UK government only sets health policy for England, while devolved governments in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland administer their own rules.

Johnson earlier this month scrapped the need for arrivals in England to have pre-departure tests and quarantine until they have tested negative.

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