Jet-setter Boris Johnson risks pricing hardworking families out of holidays abroad with new traffic light system

Testing requirements for travel to ‘safe’ countries will price hardworking families out of holidays abroad

In 2020 Boris Johnson took three holidays.

At the start of the year, during the Iran Crisis, he and wife Carrie Symonds sunned themselves on the Caribbean island of Mustique at a reported cost of £15,000 per week.

A month later, during Storm Dennis, he shunned COBRA meetings, shrugged off the mounting coronavirus crisis and retreated to Chevening, a 115-room country house in the Kent countryside.

Boris Johnson's traffic light travel system could limit international travel to high earners (Getty Images)

By August, as thousands of English state school pupils found out that their exam results had been marked down by an algorithm, he was ready for another break, nipping north of the border for a glamping holiday in Wester Ross.

On Monday, the jet-setting prime minister prone to bouts of wanderlust teased the reopening of international travel - well, for those who can afford it at least.

Johnson, who also famously holidayed in Canada during the 2011 London riots while Mayor, unveiled a traffic light travel system, offering a sunray of hope to millions of UK citizens who have spent the majority of the last year confined to their postcode.

That glimmer was quickly snuffed for the lowest earners, however, when the PM revealed that travellers visiting so-called ‘safe’ destinations would be required to take a Covid test before and after their holiday. With private PCR tests costing upwards of £90 per person, families could be faced with eye-watering bills on top of their usual holiday expenses which stretch some to their limit.

If the government doesn’t want this reopening of international borders to be exclusive to elites and solo travellers, it is vital that PCR tests are subsidised by the government to ensure that all of us get the break - or in the case of Boris, three breaks - that we all deserve.

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