With the game-changing news that, from 19th July, fully vaccinated travellers will be able to enjoy quarantine-free holidays to selected destinations on the government's amber list, there's now even more choice for that perfect summer escape.

Here, we explain the ins and outs of the amber list, from a UK perspective, and what you need to check prior to booking and departure.

The amber list explained

Following a return to international travel in May, the UK government set out a new traffic light system based on Covid-19 risk levels, with each destination given a status of green, amber or red. You can find out how it all works with our simplified guide, which outlines what each level means and what you'll need to think about when planning your holiday. For destinations on the amber list, these are the things you'll need to consider:

  • From 19th July 2021, if you're arriving in the UK from an amber list country, and you've been fully vaccinated, there will be no need to quarantine. Adults and children aged between 11 and 18 will have to take a pre-departure test (before leaving destination country to return to the UK) AND a PCR test on or before the second day after returning home
  • Children aged 5–10 years will be required to PCR test on or before the second day after returning home only
  • Children aged under five are exempt from all testing and isolation requirements
  • If you're not fully vaccinated, you will have to quarantine for 10 days at home. You will have to take a pre-departure test (before leaving destination country to return to the UK) AND a PCR test on days two and eight after arriving back in the UK
  • If you are not fully vaccinated, you can end quarantine/self-isolation early by taking a test to release test on day five, by purchasing an extra PCR test (this is in addition to the days 2 and 8 tests above). If you test negative, you can end quarantine when this day five test is returned negative
  • Test packages must be booked and paid for before travelling from a list of government-approved testing providers
  • There must be no FCDO (Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office) restrictions for travel to your chosen destination
  • You must always check the entry requirements for your chosen destination both at the time of booking and prior to departure - our specialists will help you with this

Can I travel to an amber list country?

Provided you meet the criteria for your chosen destination and you're prepared to isolate at home on return to the UK, then you can enjoy a holiday to a much wider selection of destinations than the current green list permits. To help you plan, we've picked out a selection of our top holidays to amber-list destinations below, all of which are currently without FCDO advise against travel. Have a browse, then contact our team specialists who'll guide you through the process.

Our flexibility promise

To give you that extra slice of certainty, which you may be looking for before you commit to a holiday, our Flexibility Promise is here to help. But, rather than blind-side you with a whole load of caveats and terms and conditions, we simply promise to pass over the most flexible terms from our trusted suppliers. And, if you need to cancel your holiday due to Covid-19, we'll refund your holiday in full within 14 days, as long as you're within seven days of departure. Otherwise, speak to our specialists and we'll help you arrange a whole new holiday.

Infinity Pool, The Yeatman, Porto

The Yeatman, Porto

3-night luxury holiday from £705 pp

Save up to £120 pp – ends 31 Jul

The luxurious, stylish Yeatman hotel is unashamedly dedicated to wine. Set on a slope south of the Douro River, just across from the old city of Porto, it stands in Vila Nova de Gaia, the traditional home of port.

Lisbon, Portugal

Porto & Lisbon luxury break

7 days from £1,915 pp incl. flights

From the picturesque villages of Duoro Valley to the fairy-tale charm of Sintra, this Porto to Lisbon trip offers it all – world-class wine, magnificent scenery and beguiling allure.

Belmond La Residencia, Mallorca

La Residencia, Mallorca

7-night luxury holiday from £1,615 pp

Save up to £345 pp – ends 31 Aug

This historic manor house is a lesson in luxurious relaxation, complete with fine dining, spa treatments and poolside cocktails.

Puerto de la Cruz, Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain

Luxury Northern Tenerife

8 days from £2,555 pp incl. flights

Staying in one of the Canary Islands’ most luxurious properties, you’ll uncover the vineyards, beaches and quaint fishing towns of Tenerife’s north with private tours and transfers included throughout.

Las Teresitas Beach, Tenerife

Luxury Southern Tenerife

8 days from £3,745 pp incl. flights

See Tenerife's south at its best, staying in a luxury hotel, enjoying a private beach club and exploring with unique tours, from whale watching to wine tastings.

El Transcantábrico Gran Lujo

Northern Spain by luxury train: El Transcantábrico Gran Lujo

10 days from £6,155 pp incl. flights

Travel the length of Spain’s northern coast in utter luxury, enjoying wine-paired dining, nights in some of the world’s largest train suites and tours that range from spa visits to walks though quiet fishing villages.

Ronda, Andalucia, Spain

Andalucia: a luxury road trip

6 days from £1,675 pp incl. flights

Knit together the world wonders of Andalucia with scenic drives, luxury palace stays and private tours included throughout.

Rioja vineyards with castle int he background

A taste of Rioja

9 days from £1,350 pp incl. flights

From the Guggenheim Mueum to the wine estates of Rioja, this no-fly holiday takes in the very best of northern Spain's culture and cuisine. You'll also enjoy stays in some of the region's finest Parador hotels.

Curtain Bluff, Antigua

Curtain Bluff, Antigua

7-night luxury holiday from £4,600 pp

Save up to £1,260 pp – ends 31 Aug

Fringed by Antigua’s serene Caribbean coastline, Curtain Bluff tempts visitors with its unrivalled hospitality and fabulous facilities, from suites with private plunge pools to world-class fine dining.

The Sandpiper, Barbados

The Sandpiper, Barbados

7-night luxury holiday from £2,620 pp

Save up to £600 pp – ends 15 Aug

Flanked by tropical gardens and a powder-white sandy cove, The Sandpiper is a tranquil idyll where the worries of everyday life simply melt away.

Sugar Beach, St Lucia

Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort, St Lucia

7-night luxury holiday from £3,070 pp

Save up to £875 pp – ends 31 Aug

This luxurious, plantation-style resort offers spectacular accommodation in one of the Caribbean's most beautiful settings.

Main Pool, Anantara Vilamoura

Anantara Vilamoura Algarve Resort, Portugal

7-night luxury holiday from £985 pp

Save up to £255 pp – ends 31 Aug

Experience Anantara’s signature brand of authentic luxury at this super-stylish resort, tucked away in a secluded location on Portugal’s sun-kissed Algarve coast.