Covid: Does the new 'jab and go' travel policy actually make it easier to holiday this summer?

ITV News Consumer Editor Chris Choi reports on the latest "jab and go" travel policy

The aviation sector hasn’t had much to get enthusiastic about after 16 months in the foreign travel doldrums, which makes its "summer starts here" verdict on Thursday's quarantine changes understandable.

I’d like to lob in a few words of caution.

Although the government is keen to take credit for restoring our liberties, it has also stressed its own freedom to change the rules again, if it deems it necessary.

In a nutshell, the unpredictables of overseas travel remain.

A couple have dinner in an empty restaurant next to the beach in Barcelona, Spain. Credit: AP

The need for fully jabbed travellers to do Covid tests means there will still be that extra cost and inconvenience to foreign travel this summer.

Speaking of cost, this sudden increase in demand will lead to some prices rising. Holiday hotspots on the amber list have already seen an increase in bookings and we will see that greatly accelerate.

Then there is the uncomfortable truth about airport queues.

There are warnings that the need to check Covid-19 status will lead to delays.

Queues at Heathrow in pre-pandemic times. Credit: PA

The border desks and staffing were never set up with this sort of work in mind - add to the mix various Brexit-related changes, and the immigration union (ISU) says it's potentially a recipe for hours of waiting.

They are especially alerting the frail and those with children to be particularly aware of this danger.

The government is accelerating electronic border controls and drafting in extra staff - but they don’t flinch from the reality that delays are likely.

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Not all the travel sector is celebrating this quarantine change, the in-bound sector that relies on overseas visitors to the UK wanted an overhaul that would help those visitors.

They say that by "keeping Britain closed" our economy is taking a £70m hit each day.There’s no doubt Thursday's announcement expands choice and travel firms are boosting services to amber destinations.

It’s a real step towards a reopening of mainstream overseas travel - but don’t fall for the dream that we are back to normal just yet.