COVID: Travellers to UK should present damaging check consequence to enter

From in the present day – Monday January 18 –  travellers wishing to enter England and Scotland should current a damaging Covid-19 check earlier than departure.


The UK Authorities has introduced that passengers (together with UK Nationals) arriving in England and Scotland might be required to current a damaging check for Covid-19 from Friday 15 January. Travellers not adhering to this rule face a superb of £500.

Wales and Northern Eire are anticipated to comply with go well with.

Travellers not
adhering to this rule face a superb of £500.

Worldwide arrivals into the UK might want to present a damaging Covid check taken inside 72 hours of journey to enter the UK.

Travellers won’t be able to board the airplane with out one.

Lateral movement checks and loop-mediated isothermal amplification (Lamp) checks might be allowed, as will the NHS-standard polymerase chain response (PCR) check. Nonetheless, arrivals from international locations not on the journey hall listing will nonetheless should self-isolate for 14 days even when they’ve a damaging check. They are going to be set free early with a second damaging check after 5 days.

The measure will apply to these arriving by airplane, practice or boat, together with UK nationals, who should take a check as much as 72 hours earlier than leaving the nation they’re in.

The UK authorities has resisted this measure for a while however the brand new variant from South Africa has prompted the rethink.

Transport Minister, Grant Shapps mentioned the federal government was “very eager” to arrange obligatory testing now due to the brand new variant of the virus circulating in South Africa, which he mentioned was:

We have already got vital measures in place to forestall imported circumstances of Covid-19, however with new strains of the virus growing internationally we should take additional precautions.

“Taken along with the present obligatory self-isolation interval for passengers getting back from high-risk international locations, pre-departure checks will present an additional line of defence – serving to us management the virus as we roll out the vaccine at tempo over the approaching weeks.

The airline trade welcomes the transfer and certainly has been lobbying for it. Nonetheless, the expectation was that the quarantine would now not be mandatory. Presently, self-isolation even with a damaging Covid-19 check continues to be mandatory. 

Responding angrily Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary mentioned Ryanair flights might be axed as he “can’t see how they’ll be capable to fill greater than 10 per cent of their seats”. He mentioned it’s higher “to not fly the planes in any respect”.

Heathrow Airport chief government John Holland-Kaye mentioned that this new measure ought to solely be short-term. 

We have to have a roadmap for a way we get out of this as a result of aviation is important to us as a small island buying and selling nation.

Travellers should pay for the check themselves. Speedy antigen checks are least expensive – anticipate to pay between £40 to £100.

Who does this apply to?

It will apply to arrivals over the age of 11 from all international locations, together with international locations which are on the journey hall listing. 

Is anybody exempt?

Sure. It is not going to apply to arrivals from the Republic of Eire, youngsters beneath 11, lorry drivers and flight, sea and rail crew might be exempt.

Passengers travelling from international locations deemed to lack “the infrastructure out there to ship the checks” may also keep away from the requirement. Precisely which international locations are nonetheless unknown. 

How will this be enforced?

Presently, travellers arriving within the UK want to finish a passenger locator type. This nonetheless stands and people who don’t and might be liable to £10,000 fines in the event that they breach quarantine.

Those that journey attempt to enter the UK with no damaging Covid certificates faces a superb of as much as £500. The airways should verify certificates and can refuse boarding to passengers who don’t have one.  They face a £2,000 superb for every passenger they let by means of with out right certification.

The UK Border Drive is predicted to hold out spot checks on travellers to observe compliance.

What if I can’t discover a check in time?

The message from the federal government is evident – that’s your downside. You’ll not be allowed to journey.

Concerning the new variant from South Africa

The brand new variant prevalent in South Africa is a extremely contagious unknown and although it’s thought-about unlikely that the mutation could be immune to the vaccines, scientists are diligently doing checks to make sure that immunisation is efficient. If within the worst-case situation the vaccine must be redesigned, this might take a number of weeks. 

The Authorities has banned arrivals from 12 southern African international locations together with South Africa, Namibia, the Seychelles and Mauritius, to cease its unfold.

In accordance with a examine undertaken by the College of Texas, the Pfizer vaccine seems to offer some safety towards each the UK and South African strains of the coronavirus. The jab is more likely to provide some defence towards the important thing N501Y mutation on the virus’s spike protein.


Take heed to Sharron Livingston speaking in regards to the Covid restrictions on BBC Radio London

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