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Arrivals in Wales and Scotland pay more for Covid tests

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Written by: Emma Lunn
22/07/2021
Travelers arriving in Wales and Scotland pay more for PCR tests than arrivals in England due to rules about which tests are accepted.

People flying into Wales or Scotland have to pay £88 for one test if they are coming from a green list country and £170 for two tests if they have been to an amber list country.

In comparison, travellers arriving in England can choose from private suppliers, with prices as low as £25 a test. Wales and Scotland use a different system where private tests are not permitted.

Wales’ first minister Mark Drakeford has justified the higher test costs by saying the Welsh government wants to be confident about the quality of tests people are taking and, that by only using NHS tests, the results can be immediately conveyed to patient records.

But aviation leaders in Scotland have written to the Scottish government calling for parity on Covid PCR testing costs with England.

The bosses of Airlines UK, Edinburgh airport, easyJet, AGS Airports, Jet2.com, Loganair, the Airport Operators Association, Tui UK and the Scottish Passenger Agents Association (SPAA), told Scotland’s first minister Nicola Sturgeon that Scottish customers face being “heavily penalised” by discrepancies in pricing.

The letter said: “Scottish passengers and families are continuing to be heavily penalised despite there being private suppliers offering the same tests that meet strict UK government requirements for a fraction of the cost.

“This lack of parity with England will continue to price many people out of travelling and will be a very real barrier to airports and airlines as we try to safely re-establish our connectivity.

“We urgently need the Scottish government to review its guidelines and introduce an equitable testing system as soon as possible and no later than by the end of July.”

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