Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the Government has been ‘absolutely crystal clear’ in its messaging about whether it’s OK to travel to an amber country, adding the public understands the rules.
He also said authorities have carried out 30,000 home visits in the past week to check that people coming in from amber countries are quarantining at home.
Mr Hancock told a Downing Street COVID briefing: “We have been absolutely straightforward about this.
“I think that the public get it and understand. If you look at what the Prime Minister said last week, what I said at the weekend, what I said in the House on Monday, and what the Prime Minister said at lunchtime today, we have been absolutely crystal clear that you should not go to an amber or red list country on holiday.
“You should only go in exceptional circumstances. An example might be to visit a very ill family member or to go to a funeral of somebody who is very close to you.
“We have been really clear throughout this pandemic that there are some things that we have banned in law but there are some things that we do not recommend. But you don’t necessarily have to ban everything as a Government minister. If you don’t advise it and you think it isn’t the right thing to do you don’t necessarily ban it.
“If you want a holiday abroad, that’s what the green list is for, or, like me, to holiday at home.
“The purpose of the green list is that we have looked around the world at the countries where we think it is safe to travel, from a point of view of having no or very very low variants of concern.
“That green list is there for people who want to have foreign travel, for instance for a holiday. The amber list is not for holidays and the red list is not for holidays either. We have been very clear and consistent.
“We have seen the public get it and many members of the public I know are looking forward to an extremely good holiday in the UK this summer.”