Passengers arriving in England can reduce mandatory self-isolation by at least a week – UK gov. new strategy for international arrivals.
From 15th December, international arrivals in England will be able to reduce mandatory quarantine by a week.
Tourists and residents will have the option to take a COVID-19 test after 5 days of self-isolation – a negative result will exempt them from further self-isolation.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps made the announcement yesterday, 24th November 2020, in a government press release. Source.
The scheme will apply to anyone arriving from a country not on the UK’s existing travel corridor list.
The statement continues:
“The move will give passengers the confidence to book international trips in the knowledge that they can return home and isolate for a shorter period if they have received a negative test.
“With those opting in to the scheme having to book and pay for a coronavirus (COVID-19) test from a private provider on the GOV.UK list, we are ensuring the NHS Test and Trace testing capacity is protected.
Under the ‘Test to release for international travel’ strategy, passengers arriving into England by plane, ferry or train should book their test before they travel; must complete a passenger locator form; and will still need to self-isolate for 5 days before taking a test – rather than taking it at their port of arrival.
“The government has considered the evidence which demonstrates that a test after 5 days of self-isolation provides materially better results than just having a test on arrival, as it allows time for the virus, should it be present, to incubate, helping reduce the risk of a false negative result.
“Passengers will be able to book a test from a provider on a GOV.UK list before arriving in England.
“If they choose to book a test, they will need to state this on their passenger locator form prior to arriving and then go straight into self-isolation at home as usual.
“If they choose to opt in after arrival, they will need to resubmit their passenger locator form.
“They can then take a test on or after day 5 of the isolation period either at home or at a private provider’s testing site, and on receipt of a negative result, can immediately finish self-isolating and return to following domestic rules.
“Those choosing not to take a test when arriving from a non-exempt country must continue to follow the current self-isolation requirements (2 weeks).”