Two destinations removed and two added to UK travel corridors list
Passengers arriving in England from Slovenia and Guadeloupe will be required to self-isolate following an increase in COVID-19 cases.
People arriving in England from Slovenia and Guadeloupe as of 19 September 2020 will be required to self-isolate for two weeks as the countries are removed from the UK government’s travel exemptions list.
Data from the Joint Biosecurity Centre and Public Health England has indicated a significant change in both the level and pace of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in both destinations, leading to ministers removing them from the current list of travel corridors.
Data from Slovenia shows that the weekly incidence (cases) per 100,000 has increased from 14.4 on 9 September to 29.1 on 16 September 2020, equating to a 102 per cent increase. There has been a sharp increase in the weekly incidence (case) rate of COVID-19 in Guadeloupe over the past four weeks, with a 558 per cent increase in weekly incidence (cases) per 100,000 between 25 August and 15 September 2020.
However, Thailand and Singapore have been added to the UK government’s travel corridor list following a decrease in confirmed cases of coronavirus. From 19 September 2020, passengers arriving to England from these destinations will no longer need to self-isolate, so long as they haven’t been in or transited through any other non-exempt countries in the 14 days preceding their arrival.
The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) has updated its travel advice to advise against all but essential travel to Slovenia and Guadeloupe. Singapore and Thailand are now exempt from the FCDO’s global advisory against non-essential travel.
The UK government has made it consistently clear that it will take decisive action if necessary to contain the virus, including removing countries from the travel corridors list rapidly if the public health risk of people returning from a particular country without self-isolating becomes too high.
People currently in Slovenia and Guadeloupe are being encouraged to follow the local rules and check the FCDO travel advice pages for further information. The UK government is urging employers to be understanding of those returning from these destinations who now will need to self-isolate.
COVID-19 has profoundly changed the nature of international travel. Travellers should always check the latest advice from the FCDO, given the potential for changing coronavirus infection rates to affect both the advice about travelling to other countries and rules about self-isolation on return.
All travellers, including those from exempt destinations, will still be required to show a complete passenger locator form on arrival into the UK unless they fall into a small group of exemptions. Border Force will carry out spot checks, and travellers who refuse to provide their contact details face a fine, starting at £100.