Isolation period after foreign travel to be scrapped from certain countries

PUBLISHED: 08:12 03 July 2020 | UPDATED: 08:52 03 July 2020

A KLM plane at Norwich Airport.  Picture: ANTONY KELLY

A KLM plane at Norwich Airport. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Archant Norfolk 2018

Holiday-makers and other travellers will be able to return from certain destinations without the need to self-isolate from next week, the transport secretary will today confirm.

Transport secretary Grant Shapps. Picture: Pippa FowlesTransport secretary Grant Shapps. Picture: Pippa Fowles

As it stands, anybody returning to the United Kingdom from trips overseas are required to self-isolate for a fortnight on arrival.

However, in a briefing this evening transport secretary Grant Shapps will confirm that people returning from certain “reduced risk” countries - including Germany, France, Spain and Italy - will be able to return without the need to do this from the end of next week.

These new measures will come into force from a week today - Friday, July 10 - and will mean that unless travellers have had to transit through a non-exempt country they will be able to go about their business as normal once they arrive in England.

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The government also hopes it should mean that any Brit visiting the countries - the full list of which will be revealed later today - will be able to do so without the need to isolate when they arrive in the opposite direction.

This, it is hoped, will also open the gateway for Brits to return to taking holidays abroad without the need to self-isolate in the country they are visiting.

Mr Shapps said: “Today marks the next step in carefully re-opening our great nation. Whether you are a holiday-maker ready to travel abroad or a business eager to open your doors again, this is good news for British people and great news for British businesses.

“The entire nation has worked tirelessly to get to this stage, therefore safety must remain our watch word and we will not hesitate to move quickly to protect ourselves if infection rates rise in countries we are reconnecting with.”

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The exemptions from self-isolation will apply to all modes of international transport, including flights, boat travel and international rail routes.

While self-isolation is coming to an end though, passengers will still be required to provide their contact details on arriving into the UK and to abide by existing public health advice on hand hygiene, face covering and social distancing.

The announcement will come in the same week that a number of flights from Norwich Airport were resumed.

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