New border control measures will be introduced in the UK in a bid to prevent new cases being brought in from abroad and to stop a second wave.

From this week, the new rules state:

  • Passengers arriving in the UK will be required to self-isolate for 14 days and could be contacted regularly throughout this period to ensure compliance. Public Health England will contact people at random to ensure they understand the requirements and are self-isolating. Removal from the country would be considered as a last resort for foreign nationals who refuse to comply with these public health measures.
  • All arrivals (except a short list of exemptions) will be required to complete an online locator form to supply contact details, travel details and the address of where they will self-isolate for 14 days. Where international travellers are unable to safely self-isolate in their own accommodation, the Government will support them finding appropriate accommodation at their own expense.

Anyone who does not comply with the mandatory conditions may face enforcement action. A breach of self-isolation will be punishable with a £1,000 fixed penalty notice in England or potential prosecution and unlimited fine.

The level of fine could increase if the risk of infection from abroad increases. The Devolved Administrations will set out their own enforcement approaches.

Border Force will undertake checks at the border and may refuse entry to any non-resident foreign nationals who refuse to comply with these regulations and is not resident in the UK. Failure to complete the form is also punishable by a £100 fixed penalty notice.

The rules don’t apply to those travelling from within the CTA (Ireland, the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands). An exception to this is if they’ve arrived in the CTA from overseas within the last 14 days, in which case they will have to provide locator details and self-isolate on arrival here. This will help make sure that those who could have come into contact with the virus overseas cannot bypass the self-isolation measures.

The Government continues to look at other options to increase travel when it’s deemed safe to do so. These include arrangements, known as “air bridges” or international travel corridors, which would remove self-isolation measures and safely open up routes to and from countries with low transmission rates.

Agreement would need to be made with individual countries before these measures take effect and the UK would seek assurances that any safe corridors met the needs of both countries.

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