Covid-19 Testing for International Travellers into UK Delayed to Monday
12th January 2021
Last modified on January 14th, 2021
Mandatory Covid testing will now be introduced for everyone arriving in England om Monday 18th January. People will need a negative Covid-19 test taken no more than three days before departure. UPDATED
The measure is being introduced due to increasing instances of Covid-19 around the world, including the emergence of new variants.
The, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps, said the delay will give passengers more time to prepare.
The rules were originally due to be introduced at 4am tomorrow.
“To give international arrivals more times to prepare, passengers will be required to provide proof of a negative Covid-19 test before departure to England from Monday 18 January at 4am,” he said on Twitter.
“Passengers must remember to complete a Passenger Locator Form before arriving back into England. Anyone without proof of a negative test face fines of £500.”
Anyone arriving in England from a country not on the travel corridor list will also have to self-isolate for up to 10 days, even if they have proof of a negative Covid test.
People are able to end their quarantine early if they have a second negative Covid-19 test taken after five days of quarantine.
There are some exemptions:
- Children under 11.
- Those travelling from countries without the infrastructure to deliver tests.
- Arrivals from the Common Travel Area with Ireland.
- Flight and international rail crew.
We reported on the new measures as they were unveiled last week:
The majority of ski resorts in Europe remain closed or open for locals only.
Many countries in Europe have banned travel from the UK due to Covid-19 rules and Brexit, which means the UK is classes as a so-called ‘third nation’.
Travellers from third nation countries are only allowed if they come from countries with low levels of Covid-19, such as New Zealand or Australia.
“If a passenger arrives in England without a pre-departure negative test result they will be fined,” said the transport minister, Robert Courts.
“We will amend the International Travel Regulations so that fines, starting at £500, can be levied on non-compliant passengers.”
“We will keep test standards and innovative testing technologies under review,” he added.
The government said the test must be ‘of a diagnostic-standard test’ such as a PCR and includes LAMP and lateral flow tests.
Airlines, train and ferry operators will be required to check that a passenger has proof of a negative test result before boarding and may ban any customers without a negative test.
Border Force will also conduct further checks upon arrival.
Operators will also be fined for transporting non-compliant passengers.