UK travel corridor closure comes into effect
The UK has today closed all travel corridors, meaning all arrivals will now have to quarantine for ten days.
The move, announced on Friday, is designed to slow the spread of Covid-19 across the country – but critics have argued it has been implemented up to a year too late.
Travellers arriving in the UK, whether by boat, train or plane, will also now have to show proof of a negative Covid-19 test to be allowed entry.
The test must be taken in the 72 hours before travelling and anyone arriving without one faces a fine of up to £500.
Under existing guidelines, the ten-day isolation period can be cut short with a negative test after five days.
The travel corridor closure will be in force until at least February 15th, officials have said.
Under the new rules, travellers arriving from the Falklands, St Helena and Ascension Islands are exempt.
Those arriving from some Caribbean islands are exempt until 04.00 GMT on Thursday January 21st.
Commenting on the closure of the travel corridors, an ABTA spokesperson said: “Public health is the absolute priority, and the government needs to take the steps it feels necessary to contain the spread of coronavirus and new strains entering the country.
“There are already a number of restrictions in place which means people are not travelling for holidays at the moment and have not been able to for most of the pandemic.
“Travel has been affected by the pandemic for over ten months now, with travel businesses generating little or no income during this time, yet unlike other sectors, such as hospitality and the arts, the Westminster government has not provided any sector-specific support.
“The government needs to address this as a matter of urgency, not only for the jobs and businesses at risk in the sector, but in recognition of the important role the travel industry will play in the economic recovery.”