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Covid passports won’t be needed for a pint at the pub

The vaccine passports will only be needed for mass gatherings like theatres and sports events under new plans (Picture: Reuters/PA/AFP)

Customers will be able to enjoy a meal or a pint at the pub without having to show a so-called vaccine passport as lockdown restrictions ease.

Boris Johnson is expected to set out the next steps out of England’s lockdown on Monday, including details on a ‘Covid status certification’ scheme and traffic light travel system.

He is expected to announce for the first time that the Government is developing the so-called ‘passport’ scheme to allow the safe return of indoor gatherings without social distancing.

Mr Johnson has scrapped the plan of making punters show proof before entering hospitality businesses, following uproar from the industry and a significant number of Tory MPs.

It has also been decided that certification will not need to be shown when entering shops and on public transport.

Under the Government’s road map, non-essential retail and outdoor dining at pubs, restaurants and cafes will be permitted to return April 12, with indoor service expected from May 17.

Punters will not have to show such certificates when going into pubs and restaurants (Picture: AFP)

The Covid-19 certificates will only be applied to mass gatherings and indoor events such as theatres, sporting venues and nightclubs.

They would prove that a person has either been vaccinated, has received a recent negative test, or has antibodies after catching the virus within the last six months.

It is understood the system will mostly work via an NHS app where people’s health statuses will be recorded, while those without smart phones or people with medical exemptions will receive a paper certificate.

But senior Government sources told The Telegraph that the scheme will take ‘months, not weeks’ to develop.

One said it is unlikely to be ready before September, while another insider added: ‘I don’t expect it to be until much later in the year.’

A number of pilots to test the efficacy of the schemes will take place across the country from mid-April.

Undated handout photo issued by Milltown Partners of the cast of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Phantom of the Opera.

It is thought the ‘passports’ would be used for theatres to replace social distancing (Picture: PA)

The first trial is due to take place on April 16 at the Hot Water Comedy Club in Liverpool and will be followed two days later by the FA Cup semi-final at Wembley.

Other events include the World Snooker Championship at Sheffield’s Crucible Theatre – running from from April 17 to May 3 – and a mass participation run at Hatfield House on April 24 and 25.

The pilots will culminate with the FA Cup Final, again at Wembley, on May 15.

Mr Johnson is also expected to set out plans for a ‘traffic light’ system that would come into effect once the travel ban is lifted.

The scheme would rate countries based on their level of risk, awarding them a ‘green’, ‘amber’ or ‘red’ status.

The PM is set to announce the new traffic light system tomorrow (Picture: Metro.co.uk)

Travellers arriving into England from ‘green’ countries will not have to isolate but will have to take tests before and after flying.

Rules will remain the same for passengers arriving from ‘amber’ or ‘red’ countries meaning they will have to isolate or go into quarantine hotels.

If the UK’s vaccine rollout remains on track, holidaymakers could jet off to a number of ‘green’ destinations in as little as six weeks.

Countries will be rated on a range of factors, including their vaccination programmes, rates of infection, emerging new variants and the country’s ability to quickly identify them.

Ministers have made clear the ban will not lift until May 17 at the very earliest, with a global travel task force set to present its findings to the Government on April 12.

Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at webnews@metro.co.uk.

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