The United Arab Emirates, Rwanda and Burundi will be added to the Government’s list of countries with travel bans from 1pm today, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps announced on Thursday.
There are now 33 countries on the UK’s travel ‘red list,’ which is being enforced in an effort to stop the spread of new Covid-19 variants from South Africa and Brazil.
“People who have been in or transited through these countries will be denied entry, except British, Irish and third country nationals with residence rights who must self-isolate for ten days at home,” Mr Shapps announced on Twitter.
“Passengers must still have proof of a negative test and completed Passenger Locator Form before arrival – or could otherwise face a £500 fine for each,” he added.
Social media influencers in Dubai, who have received widespread criticism for travelling abroad under Tier 4 or lockdown restrictions, including from Home Secretary Priti Patel, will be among the Britons rushing back to the UK –however, they will not face 10 days in a quarantine hotel at their own cost as the Department of Health has yet to get the scheme up and running.
Travel bans and quarantine hotels are part of the tougher travel restrictions announced amid fears of new variants of the virus – Tim Hames, a senior adviser to global consultancy FTI Consulting, warned in an industry conference on Thursday there were likely to be “intense and potentially tighter limits on travel” until May.