TUI to offer £20 Covid tests for UK holidaymakers to green list countries
TUI, the world’s largest tour operator, has partnered with the UK government’s authorised test provider Chronomics, to make holidays this summer “easy and affordable”. Packages start at £20 per person for a pre-departure lateral flow test and a PCR test on day two after their return, including delivery and return costs for the tests, potentially saving families hundreds of pounds on their holiday costs.
Customers will be able to order tests on a newly created Chronomics and TUI booking hub an hour after booking their holiday, which goes live on Monday (May 10th). Currently some PCR tests start from £120 each, a substantial cost for families travelling abroad.
Under the TUI scheme, passengers travelling to amber-list destinations can pay £50 per person for the required pre-departure lateral flow test and two PCR tests upon return.
The government is expected to unveil its traffic light system today, Friday, and green-list destinations are expected to include Portugal, along with Malta, Gibraltar, Iceland and Israel.
Other popular holiday destinations such as Spain, France, Greece and Italy are likely to be on the UK’s amber list, which will require a 10-day quarantine at home and two PCR tests, although the Canary Islands and Balearics hope that the UK will assess them separately from the mainland as their data is more favourable.
The tour operator is also offering two other packages which include outbound PCR tests if they are required by the destination, costing £60 for green-list countries and £90 for amber list nations. TUI is preparing to resume flights on May 17th when the UK government is expected to allow travel abroad for non-essential reasons again.
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Andrew Flintham, managing director of TUI UK & Ireland, said: “We have always believed that cost-effective testing solutions, as well as maximum flexibility, will make travel a possibility this summer and beyond. Our research has shown that customers are looking forward to their much needed holiday abroad, but affordable and easy testing solutions are imperative to make this a reality.”
“Also, should testing requirements change between purchase and travel, for example if an amber package is purchased and the destination moves on to the green list, we’ll simply refund the difference.”
Along the same lines as TUI, Ryanair, Europe’s largest airline, have halved the cost of COVID test kits to £60 for UK-based customers.