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New Coronavirus Rules For Travellers Arriving In England Come Into Force On Friday

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By Sara C Nelson | ·Senior Editor, HuffPost UK

New rules that will require international travellers to test negative for coronavirus before arriving in England will come into force from Friday.

From 4am on January 15, passengers arriving in England by boat, train or plane – including UK nationals – will have to take a test up to 72 hours before leaving the country of departure.

They will need to present proof of a negative test result to their carrier on boarding while the UK Border Force will conduct spot checks on arrivals.

£500 penalties

New arrivals who flout the rules will face a minimum £500 fine, while the operator who transported them will also be fined.

Passengers will still have to quarantine for 10 days regardless of their test results, transport minister Robert Courts said in a statement.

British nationals attempting to return home who test positive must not travel and must follow the local guidance in their host country, and contact the nearest consulate if they need support.

“If a passenger arrives in England without a pre-departure negative test result they will be fined,” Courts said.

“We will amend the International Travel Regulations so that fines, starting at £500, can be levied on non-compliant passengers.”

Travellers will have to take an internationally approved test, and Courts said guidance on what was acceptable would be made available to passengers and carriers.

“We will keep test standards and innovative testing technologies under review,” he said.

The new rules apply to almost every country in the world, including those on England’s travel corridor list, and further compliance checks are due to be conducted by Border Force staff.

Exemptions

Passengers travelling to England from other UK countries, as well as the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands, will not be covered by the new regulations.

Children under 11 travelling from any country are also exempt from pre-departure testing.

The DfT said there would also be a limited number of exemptions for people like hauliers, air, international rail and maritime crew to allow the free flow of freight.

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