WHILE the public accepts that the pandemic is a novel predicament and the Government cannot get everything right first time around, its travel guidelines are confusing.

Can you, or can you not, visit the 170 countries – most of the world – on the amber list? Yes, you may, says the Government by not making travel to them illegal; no, you may not, say ministers, and doubly not if you are going on a non-essential holiday.

On a traffic light, amber means “get ready”, but some ministers are saying that all holiday travel to amber list countries should be stopped for the whole year.

Meanwhile, the EU countries which depend on the money UK holidaymakers spend, are about to welcome us to their beaches – even though our ministers don’t want us to go, although they won’t make it illegal.

This creates a grey area, where insurance won’t work, where travel companies can insist people fulfil their bookings or lose their money, where people will start looking askance at neighbours who make a different interpretation of the Government’s stance.

Conservative libertarians don’t like to legislate to restrict people’s freedom, but to avoid doubt among all sides of the travel industry, we need it in black and white – or rather in green and red, where green is for yes and red is for no. There is too much ambiguity in amber.