On Monday, May 17, rules around international travel will change, and a traffic light system will be brought in.

Since the latest lockdown began in January 2021, international travel has been against the law, except for those who have an essential reason.

From tomorrow it will no longer be against the law to travel – but the traffic light system will dictate whether you are advised to travel.

For those travelling to "green" countries, they can travel without having to quarantine upon return.

Brits are advised against travelling to amber and red countries – and there are strict quarantine rules in place for those who do have to travel.

But everyone will need to take several coronavirus tests in order to limit the spread of the disease.

Couple at airport
Travelling abroad will involve a lot of planning

So what are the new rules for travelling? And what will your airport visit involve? Here is everything you need to know.

New rules for travelling

The most important thing to be aware of before travelling is the traffic light system.

What you need to do before you leave, and when you return, depends on whether your destination is on the Green, Amber or Red list.

Green: Low Risk You can go on holiday to a country on the green list, but you will need to take a pre-departure test in that country before you return.

On, or before, the second day after arriving in the uK they will need to take a PCR Covid-19 test from a private provider. These vary in price, but usually cost around £120.

Those arriving from green countries do not need to quarantine, unless they receive a positive test.

Tests must be booked and paid for in advance.

Passenger at airport
Make sure you check the rules for entry to your destination

Amber: Medium Risk People are being asked not to travel to Amber countries for "leisure".

If you do need to travel to an Amber country, you will need to take the usual pre-departure test, and then PCR tests on day two and day eight after coming home.

In addition, arrivals will need to quarantine, either at home or at the place where they are staying.

You have the option to have an early release from quarantine. This is called Test to Release.

In this case you need to take another test on day five – if it comes back negative they can leave quarantine.

However, they still need to take the pre-departure test, as well as the test on day two and eight.

Red: High risk – Similarly to Amber countries, you are urged not to travel for "leisure".

If you're returning from a red country you must quarantine at a government-approved hotel for 10 days when you return, at your own expense at £1,750 a head.

As well as the pre-departure test, you will also need to take a PCR test on day two and eight of your hotel quarantine.

This is the same as the Amber group, however, you won't be able to pay for Test to Release.

You can see the full list of green, amber and red countries as of May 17 here.

What will travelling through airports involve?

From May 17, you no longer need to complete a declaration form to travel abroad.

However, when you return you will need to submit a passenger locator form.

Those who have had a full coronavirus vaccine course (two doses) will be able to demonstrate their status in order to enter some countries. This can be proved using an app, or a letter.

Other countries will determine their own health rules, so you should check entry requirements for the country you are travelling to.

You may need to prove you have had a negative Covid-19 test before entering certain countries.

If you do, you should book a private test – you can't use the NHS Test and Trace service.

Some airports, such as London Stansted, offer an airport testing facility. This will need to be booked before you arrive.

When you arrive back into the UK you will need to show proof of a negative Covid test, as well as proof of booking two further tests.

As well as a proof of a negative Covid test, depending on where you're going or coming from, you may need to show paperwork such as your passport or visa.

Heathrow airport
Some UK airports have their own testing centres

At the airport you will be expected to wear a face covering and follow social contact rules.

There will no doubt be enhanced cleaning, and other measures such as perspex screens and sanitiser stations.

As restrictions relax, people will be allowed to dine and drink at the airport.

Non-essential retail will also be open, so you can still do your pre-flight shopping.

Bear in mind that because of the additional measures, things can take slightly longer at the airport – so make sure you have enough time.

Remember not to travel if you are displaying any of the symptoms of coronavirus.