Coronavirus paperwork could be linked to passports to speed up re-entry to the UK, it has been reported.

In a bid to cut potentially lengthy queues at the border officials are working to reopen automatic e-passport gates at airports, The Times reports.

This would allow people with chipped passports to walk through swiftly, rather than wait in a long queue to have their papers manually checked.

Despite tight restrictions on international travel, passengers have had to endure lengthy waits at the border while whittled down staff check coronavirus paperwork.

With passenger numbers predicted to increase fivefold when the travel ban is lifted on May 17, huge waits are likely if the current system remains in place.

Last week, Heathrow warned that holidaymakers would face queues of more than six hours without e-gates, due to staff having to inspect every single traveller's paperwork manually.

The proposals are designed to avoid lengthy queues
The proposals are designed to avoid lengthy queues

The new system would allow a computer to instantly check forms when a passport is tapped.

“It is not the airlines’ job to check every layer of complexity," an industry insider told The Times.

"We have fewer staff due to the pandemic, we are already overstretched, so we don’t have resources to handle even more bureaucracy on top of what they already have to.”

Long waits at the airport are not the only obstacle between Brits and a pleasant stay overseas this summer.

Tests cost on average £150, adding £600 to the cost of a holiday for a family of four.

A VAT cut would reduce the cost of PCR tests
A VAT cut would reduce the cost of PCR tests

Yesterday it was reported that the cost of Covid tests for holidaymakers could be slashed to below £50 making trips abroad much more affordable.

A source from HMRC told The Telegraph that gold standard PCR tests done at home would be free from VAT, which currently sits at £20.

This would cut the cheapest from £60 to below £50, while the most expensive would be around £240.

Previously the VAT exemption was only in place for PCR tests done or overseen by a registered nurse.

The source said: “Exempting the tests from VAT is being seriously considered.

"The main concerns are that test providers pass on the saving to travellers and whether it will set a precedent for removing the charge in other areas of the economy.”