Hotel quarantine: What do you need to do if travelling from a red list country?

Hotel quarantine is for people who have travelled to a country on the red list in the 10 days before arriving in England

A traveller enters a testing centre at Heathrow Airport. Getty.
A traveller enters a testing centre at Heathrow Airport. Getty.

England has introduced a traffic-light system for international travel, with countries posing the lowest risk for the spread of Covid-19 appearing on the relatively hassle-free green list.

Another 43 countries are on the red list, which involves the most severe restrictions, including a legal requirement to quarantine on arrival.

What do I need to do before travelling to England from a red country?

One of the first things you must do is book your quarantine hotel.

You also need to book two Covid tests that you will take while in quarantine.

At some point in the three days before travelling, you must take a Covid test and receive a negative result.

Once you have the tests and hotel booked, you must also complete a passenger travel form, which, among other details, includes your travel plans.

What is hotel quarantine?

The strict hotel quarantine is for people who have travelled from or passed through a country on the red list in the 10 days before arriving in England.

If you’re a British or Irish national or a third-country national with residence rights in the UK and you have been in or passed through a red-list country in the 10 days before your arrival, you will need to quarantine in a hotel.

There are some exemptions for jobs and emergencies.

The day of arrival in England will be treated as day zero.

How much does it cost?

For the full 10 days in the quarantine hotel, the cost is £1,750 for adults, £650 for children over 11 and £325 for children between the ages of five and 11.

Where can you arrive?

Other ports may be added, but for now, travellers can arrive to Heathrow Airport, Gatwick Airport, London City Airport, Birmingham Airport, Bristol Airport and Farnborough Airport.

What can you do and not do in a quarantine hotel?

The hotel will provide your meals. Most visitors are banned except for emergencies or if the visitor is a caregiver.

You should bring prescription medicines with you as you may not be allowed to leave to have prescriptions refilled.

You will only be allowed to leave your room in limited circumstances, which include emergencies and court appearances.

It is not possible to select a particular room at a hotel or to seek a higher-standard room.

You can quarantine with the people you travelled with and hotels will prioritise allocating larger or connecting rooms to families.

Updated: May 8, 2021 11:57 AM

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