This will make foreign holidays the preserve of the rich again
UK Government have doubled-down on plans to deter people for travelling abroad by implementing a series of prohibitive measures such as quarantining, traffic light systems and costly PCR tests with hugely inflated costs.
The report from the government’s ‘global travel taskforce’ published on Friday, said travel could be opened up from 17 May but that individuals would require three PCR tests to holiday even in the safest, “green-light” states in a cynical and obvious ploy to deter people from travelling due to the prohibitive costs.
On the government’s approved list of providers, prices for a “package” of two PCR tests under the present quarantine regime, on days two and eight, range from £160 to £549 charged by London Medical Concierge. Most of the firms listed as recognised test providers share clinical partners for tests, with many using the Cambridge-based Oncologica laboratory.
Even the cheapest UK pre-departure PCR tests are still £60 each claimed to be a 'subsidised price' for passengers at Gatwick airport – most travellers are being charged an average of £128 for a pre-departure test, more than double the price for much of Europe, according to research from the travel association Abta and the Airport Operators Association. The average costs of a PCR test across Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal and Spain, was just £62 they said. Government subsidies in those countries and rules capping prices have contributed to the lower prices.
What isn't widely publicised is that laboratories are also obliged in the UK to carry out genome sequencing for the government for any positive Covid tests, which is said to be why the tests are so much more expensive than those in Europe. Genome sequencing dose not help the patient tested of course, but does give the government massive amounts of information about you and the virus.