Certain makes of the AstraZeneca vaccine are not recognised by some countries, meaning travellers who are required to be fully vaccinated can not travel to countries that have such travel rules in place. This is because some batches are yet to be approved by the European Medicines Agency, despite being chemically identical to batches of the vaccine made elsewhere in the word.
Steve and Glenda Hardy, 64 and 63, were turned back at Manchester Airport at 3.30am on Friday when they tried to board a flight to Malta.
The couple were denied their place on the flight due to being recipients of the AstraZeneca vaccine – specifically doses that were manufactured in India.
The vaccine batch numbers on their NHS apps were checked by TUI and the couple were told they could not board the flight as Maltese authorities did not recognise the jab.
The ‘ban; meant the couple were unable to see their son, who lives in the Mediterranean country, having not being able to visit him for more than a year.