Latest travel news: ‘No scientific rationale’ in stopping vaccinated people from travelling

There is no scientific basis for restricting overseas travel for vaccinated Britons, the head of the Covid Symptom Tracker app study at King’s College London has said.

Professor Tim Spector said he thought that the UK was “in a much better place than many people are telling us” and that he was “not worried too much about what’s happening abroad”.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has hinted that international travel restrictions may not be eased as early as was first indicated, on May 17, amid concerns of a “third wave” in Europe. 

But Professor Spector said rising rates would make no difference to vaccinated Britons. “If you’ve been vaccinated, and many of the elderly people have, there’s no scientific rationale to stop them from travelling,” he told the Press Association. 

His comments were echoed by Mark Woolhouse, professor of infectious disease epidemiology at the University of Edinburgh. “If the Government chooses to curtail travel, that will not prevent the problem, that will not prevent the next wave,” he said. “The idea that somehow bringing in extra cases from overseas tips the balance and sends us into an epidemic we wouldn’t have had without that is just simply wrong.”

New legislation, approved by Parliament on Thursday and in force from March 29, bans all non-essential overseas travel, possibly until July. 

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