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UK’s self-isolation requirement is lifted for lower-risk countries

From 10 July 2020, passengers will be able to travel to many countries without having to self-isolate on return to the UK.

Passengers may not have to self-isolate on return to UK

Passengers returning or visiting from certain destinations which pose a reduced risk to the public – including Spain and Italy – will no longer need to self-isolate when arriving in England, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has said.

The new measures will come into force from 10 July 2020. People arriving from selected destinations will be able to enter England without needing to self-isolate, unless they have been in or transited through non-exempt countries in the previous 14 days.

A risk assessment has been conducted by the Joint Biosecurity Centre, in close consultation with Public Health England and the Chief Medical Officer. The assessment draws on a range of factors including the prevalence of coronavirus, the numbers of new cases and potential trajectory of the disease in that destination.

A number of countries will be exempted from the requirement for passengers arriving into England to self-isolate for 14 days. All passengers, except those on a small list of exemptions, will still be required to provide contact information on arrival in the UK.

The government’s expectation is that a number of the exempted countries will also not require arrivals from the UK to self-isolate.

The exempted countries and territories will be kept under constant review. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has also updated its global advisory against ‘all but essential’ international travel to exempt certain destinations that no longer pose an unacceptably high risk of COVID-19.

The government continues to work closely with international partners around the world to discuss arrangements for travellers arriving from the UK and will continue this engagement ahead of the changes coming into force.

Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps, said: “This marks the next step in carefully reopening our great nation. Whether you are a holidaymaker 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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