What are the current rules since the new variant?
The new Omicron coronavirus variant was originally detected in South Africa and is now spreading rapidly around the world. As such, many countries have implemented rules to respond to the spread. The UK track and trace system will notify people of contact with suspected Omicron cases and will be required to self-isolate for 10 days regardless of whether they are fully vaccinated or not.
Masks are now required in shops and public transport as well as hairdressers and taxis. The fine for not wearing a mask in a mandatory space is £200. Boosters will be rolled out to those over the age of 18 and the UK government aims to have everyone boosted by the end of January.
New travel rules for the UK
The UK travel rules have changed again as a result of the new variant. Those who are entering the UK from a foreign country will need to take a PRC test within 2 days of arriving and unlike before, a rapid flow test is not accepted. Whilst waiting for the results, self-isolation is required whether or not an individual is vaccinated. If a negative test is received, self-isolation can stop.
The red list was removed previously, however, the following countries have been added to the red list as a result of the new variant:
- South Africa
It must be noted that currently, this list is constantly changing.
This means that no-one is able to enter the country from these places unless they are UK or Irish residents. However they will have to self-isolate in a government quarantine hotel for 10 days. The current quarantine hotel rates include the following:
- 10 days (11-nights) for one adult amounts to £2,285
- Additional adult (or child over 11) amounts to £1,430
- Children aged five -11 amounts to £325
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The information provided does not amount to legal advice.