Vaccines ‘for Ever More’ to Travel Abroad, Says UK Govt Transport Minister

LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 30: Travelers arrive at Gatwick Airport on July 30, 2021 in London, England. Restrictions to and from the UK remain in place as Coronavirus continues to disrupt global travel. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)
Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

Transport Minister Grant Shapps has said that vaccination will be a feature of foreign travel “for ever more”, also claiming that young people will not be able to “leave the country” without it.

The transport secretary made the remarks after the government announced that vaccinated travellers coming from India, France, and Dubai will not need to quarantine after landing in the United Kingdom.

Claiming that most countries will permanently demand travellers be fully vaccinated against the Chinese coronavirus before being allowed to enter their country, Mr Shapps told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme in comments reported by The Times:  “I think double vaccination, full vaccination, is going to be a feature for ever more and most countries, probably all countries, will require full vaccination in order for you to enter.”

In what appeared to be a further targeting of young people, the minister then told LBC radio that they effectively won’t be able to leave the country without vaccination.

Shapps said: “It’s important to understand that there are simply going to be things that you will not be able to do unless you’re double-vaccinated or have a medical reason not to be, including going abroad.”

“So actually there are good reasons if you’re perhaps in your twenties and you feel like ‘oh, this doesn’t really affect me’ — well, it is going to, because you won’t be able to leave the country,” he added.

The latter remarks come after weeks of the government threatening young people with Britain’s first ever vaccine passports being required to enter nightclubs.

On July 19th, the alleged ‘Freedom Day’ when most lockdown restrictions were theoretically lifted, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that from the end of September “when all over-18s will have had their chance to be doubled-jabbed, we’re planning to make full vaccination the condition for entry to nightclubs and other venues where large crowds gather. Proof of a negative test will no longer be enough.”

The shock announcement was followed by Johnson implying that travel and large events such as festivals would also need proof of vaccination.

The war on young Britons has since continued, with the government also reportedly considering making domestic vaccine passports a condition for attending university lectures and living on-campus.

The Department for Education was recently forced to deny that there were any such plans — at least for now — likely due to pressure from academia and student groups.

It had been suggested that Johnson was simply making empty threats in order to frighten young people into booking their vaccinations, suspicions that appeared to be substantiated by Dominic Raab, the de fact deputy prime minister, who said last week that the prospect of vaccine passports was “a little bit of coaxing and cajoling”.

Lockdown sceptics, however, are taking the threats seriously, with one warning Britons of all ages not to dismiss the possibility of domestic vaccine passports for nightclubs as something that only affects young people.

Sir Desmond Swayne said on Monday: “People see this as an imposition on young people who would want to go to nightclubs, so they think, ‘Oh, well, it’s only them.’ This is an imposition on us all.”

“It is the Trojan Horse for an identity card system. Once you bring in requirements of this sort, they’re very, very difficult to remove,” Sir Desmond warned.

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