Quarantine for arrivals in the UK 'could be slashed to FIVE days'November 12, 2020
Quarantine for arrivals in the UK ‘could be slashed to FIVE days’ under new ‘test and release’ system in glimmer of hope for travel industry
- Ministers are working on plans to reduce the current 14-day travel quarantine
- A new ‘test and release’ system could see self-isolation period cut to five days
- People who test negative for coronavirus would be able to return to normal life
Travel quarantine could be slashed from 14 days to just five under Government plans which would deliver a major boost to the travel industry.
Ministers are working on a ‘test and release’ system which would replace blanket rules which state people returning from high risk countries must self-isolate for two weeks.
The new approach could see people told to stay at home for a period of five days upon their arrival back in the UK.
They would then be tested for coronavirus and travellers who test negative would be free to return to their normal lives.
It came after Transport Secretary Grant Shapps added Denmark, Germany and Sweden to the Government’s travel quarantine ‘red list’.
A new ‘test and release’ system could see the travel quarantine period slashed from 14 days to five. Heathrow Airport is pictured on November 4
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps and the Government’s Global Travel Task Force are looking at how to reduce the self-isolation period with a new system potentially being rolled out next month
International travel is restricted during the current four-week England-wide lockdown but ministers are still sticking with their so-called ‘travel corridors’ policy.
The Times reported that the new ‘test and release’ system could be rolled out from next month when it is hoped the national shutdown will have ended and travel rules will be eased.
The Government set up a Global Travel Task Force last month to look at how the 14 day quarantine period could be slashed.
It is expected to submit its formal recommendations next week.
Mr Shapps is said to support reducing the self-isolation period to one week but it is thought the Government could follow Ireland’s lead and set the benchmark at five days.
The travel industry has been calling on ministers for months to reduce quarantine by introducing testing on arrival at airports.
The industry believes reducing the self-isolation requirements will make it much easier and less stressful for people to travel abroad.
It came after Britons in Denmark were given just three hours to fly home and avoid quarantine after Mr Shapps announced at 1.30am that Denmark was being added to the ‘red list’ from 4am this morning.
The ‘urgent decision’ was taken by the Transport Secretary after a new strain of coronavirus was found to be spreading from minks to humans in the country.
Mr Shapps tweeted in the early hours of this morning to announce that Denmark was immediately being added to the travel quarantine ‘red list’
Mr Shapps tweeted: ‘I’ve taken the urgent decision tonight to remove DENMARK from the travel corridor list immediately given developments.
‘Passengers arriving into the UK from DENMARK from 4am on 6 November 2020 will need to self-isolate for 14 days.’
Denmark has locked down wide areas and is planning to cull the country’s 17 million minks after discovering the rapidly spreading coronavirus mutation.
Mr Shapps had already announced yesterday afternoon that Germany and Sweden are being added to the ‘red list’ from 4am on Saturday.
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