Covid details could be linked to passports in bid to cut lengthy airport delays

0
53



Coronavirus paperwork could be linked to passports to speed up re-entry to the UK in a bid to cut lengthy queues at airports, it has been reported.

Border officials are working to reopen automatic e-passport gates at airports to be reopened, instead of checking every passenger’s papers manually, The Times reports.

This would allow people with chipped passports to walk through swiftly, rather than wait in a long queue.

Despite tight restrictions on international travel, arrivals have suffered lengthy delays at the border while reduced numbers of staff check coronavirus paperwork, reports The Mirror.

Experts claim the crisis could worsen when more widespread international travel is allowed.

With passenger numbers predicted to increase massively when the international travel ban is lifted after May 17, huge waits are likely if a solution is not found. Last week, Heathrow warned that holidaymakers would face queues of more than six hours without e-gates, due to staff having to inspect every single traveller’s paperwork.

The new system would allow a computer to instantly check forms when a passport is tapped.

“It is not the airlines’ job to check every layer of complexity,” an industry insider told The Times.

“We have fewer staff due to the pandemic, we are already overstretched, so we don’t have resources to handle even more bureaucracy on top of what they already have to.”

Long waits at the airport are not the only barrier between UK holidaymakers and a pleasant overseas stay this summer. PCR Covid tests are priced at an average £150, adding £600 to the cost of a holiday for a family of four.

It has been reported that the cost of Covid tests for holidaymakers could be slashed to below £50 making trips abroad much more affordable – if the 20 per cent VAT levy was removed.

A source from HMRC said gold standard PCR tests done at home would be free from VAT cutting the cheapest from £60 to below £50.

Currently, the VAT exemption is only in place for PCR tests done or overseen by a registered nurse.

The source said: “Exempting the tests from VAT is being seriously considered. The main concerns are that test providers pass on the saving to travellers and whether it will set a precedent for removing the charge in other areas of the economy.”



Source link

قالب وردپرس

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here