A NEW traffic-light system is set to allow Brits to return home from certain countries without having to quarantine.
Coronavirus lockdown restrictions has meant people have had to self-isolate for two weeks upon returning to the UK – but that is all set to change.
Will I have to quarantine when I come back from holiday?
For now, the government is still enforcing a 14-day quarantine for anyone entering the country by plane, train or boat.
But the Government has confirmed it would ditch the two-week blanket quarantine rules for everyone coming into the country.
In a written statement Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said the Government will “shortly begin to ease the health measures at the UK border” which will allow passengers to be “exempted from self isolation requirements”.
The Government will outline which countries will be on the safe list later this week, meaning people won’t have to stay home for 14 days when they arrive in the UK.
The government will introduce a traffic-light system that will be used to rate other countries’ coronavirus risk.
People travelling to Green or Amber countries will soon no be longer required to quarantine for 14 days on their return to the UK.
The Green and Amber categories are expected to include almost every country in Europe, with Portugal and Sweden as the two possible exceptions.
Countries in the Red category will be those that continue to see high rates of tranmission, like the US and Brazil.
The measures are expected to be introduced as early as July 6.
What are the quarantine rules in the UK?
The changes will be welcome, with research showing almost three-quarters of Brits haven’t had a holiday this year, while almost half the nation has had to cancel one.
Since June 8, guidelines have required anyone entering the UK to quarantine for 14 days.
Those rules continue to apply for the time being – both to Brits returning to the country and tourists arriving from abroad.
Anyone entering the country must provide contact details and then self-isolate for 14 days, or face a fine of up to £100.
Police are conducting checks to ensure people are quarantining and not leaving their residence for the two-week period.
Magistrates also have the powers to prosecute or to issue unlimited fines for persistent breaches of the new self-isolation rule, or for refusal to pay a fine that has already been issued.
The quarantine is being run and enforced by Border Force, cops, and Public Health England officials.
Brits living in the UK can quarantine at their own home, but they are not allowed to leave the house for a fortnight.
Anyone without accommodation should be provided alternative accommodation by the government.
What are the quarantine rules in other countries?
The new measures apply when people enter the UK, not necessarily when they leave the UK and arrive in another country.
Travel to other countries such as Denmark, Norway, Finland, Holland and “low-risk” Caribbean islands is also expected to be made easier.
Until then, Brits may still have to quarantine after they land in a foreign country – depending on the destination.
However Portugal faces being left off the air bridges list – meaning Brits who were hopeing to head to the Algarve this summer may be left feeling disappointed.
Meanwhile, Spain has lifted its two-week quarantine, with British tourists welcomed back earlier in June.
Italy is also on the air bridge list, while Iceland and Austria offer coronavirus checks upon landing instead.
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