Travelers must remain in hotel quarantine for ten days in the UK from Monday. They have to pay for this themselves. If you do not follow the rules, you risk paying heavy fines and even imprisonment.
“We need to move forward with our travel restrictions,” British Health Secretary Matt Hancock said. The quarantine hotel plan has been in place for a month and a half, but is only being implemented now. Concretely, this means that every UK resident returning from one of the 33 countries at risk must undergo a ten-day quarantine in a quarantine hotel – there are 16 in total. With this, the British government wants to prevent the spread of new viral variants. Travelers must also test negative twice during the quarantine period.
“The rules that come into effect today will strengthen the quarantine system and provide an extra layer of security against new variables outside of borders,” Hancock said. “These measures are important to protect our vaccination programme.”
Up to 10 years in prison
The fines and penalties for those trying to avoid these measures are significant. Anyone who refuses to take the test will be fined £2,000. Those who ignore the hotel quarantine risk a fine of between 5,000 and 10,000 pounds. Anyone who lies about being in a red zone faces up to 10 years in prison. In the UK, 33 countries are on the red zone list, including Portugal, Brazil and South Africa. Belgium is not on the list.
Travelers who have to stay in a quarantine hotel must pre-book a room online through a government portal. They have to pay themselves the costs of accommodation, about 2,200 euros. Travelers must pre-book their hotel through the government website and fill out a passenger locator form.
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