From Monday 15th February 2021 anyone arriving at a UK port of entry who has been in a country on the UK’s ‘Red List’ in the previous 10 days will be required to purchase a quarantine package.
All passengers, no matter which country they have travelled from, are already required to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken no more than 3 days before departure and must self-isolate for 10 days on arrival.
Bookings will be made through a dedicated online portal and will include assigned government transportation, food and drinks, accommodation in a government-approved facility, security and welfare testing.
The charge will be £1,750 per person and, currently, 16 hotels have been contracted for an initial 4,600 rooms.
All passengers travelling to England will be required to take a COVID-19 test on day 2 and day 8 of their assigned quarantine.
Fines will also be issued ranging from £5,000 rising to £10,000 for arrivals who fail to quarantine in a designated hotel. A £1,000 penalty will also be given to any international arrival who fails to take a mandatory test, followed by a £2,000 penalty to any international arrival who fails to take the second mandatory test. This will be accompanied by an automatic extension of the quarantine period to 14 days.
Passenger locator forms will now not only detail their travel journey but also their quarantine and testing package. Anyone failing to admit they have travelled from a country designated as a ‘red list’ country on their form could face a £10,000 fine or prosecution and up to 10 years in prison.
Matt Hancock, the Health and Social Care Secretary said:
“Our fight against this virus has many fronts and, just as we’re attacking this virus through our vaccination programme, which is protecting more people every day, we’re strengthening our defences through these vital measures so we can protect the progress that we’ve worked so hard to accomplish.”
All passengers should expect to be checked numerous times throughout their journey, such as by carriers at the time of departure, by airport staff throughout their journey, by Border Force officers on arrival and spot checks by police, where appropriate, for those quarantining at home.
There will be significant security throughout, with teams directing travellers on arrival, in transit and on arrival at the managed quarantine facilities. Security will also be present to ensure passengers remain at their facility and, where necessary, police will be called upon to provide additional support.
Any passengers travelling back to England from countries not on the travel ban list will still be required to quarantine at home for 10 days and abide by the same stringent testing regime. In both cases, tests must be booked from a list of government-approved test providers. Test to Release will continue to be in operation – however, arrivals will still be required to purchase the 2-testing package.
Please click here to view the current ‘Red List’ countries
Click here to book your quarantine hotel on the official government online portal.
As these rules are subject to change, it is always best to check on the current status before attempting to travel to the UK.