People traveling to England who have spent time in "high risk destinations" must now quarantine at a government-managed facility upon their arrival.
The new policy went into effect on Monday for anyone who has been to a country on the UK’s so-called "red list" in the past 10 days, according to a statement from the UK’s Department of Health and Social Care. The list includes 33 hotspots with Covid-19 variants in circulation.
The statement said that the government has made deals with 16 hotels to date, providing 4,963 rooms for the new quarantine system. A further 58,000 rooms are on standby, it said.
Those traveling to England from everywhere else must quarantine for 10 days at home and take Covid-19 tests on the second and eighth days after their arrivals.
The government has tough measures already in place requiring all travelers into the UK, from any location, to provide proof of a negative Covid-19 test taken no more than three days before departure, it said.
The new, tougher quarantine restrictions carry heavier fines and penalties with potential prison sentences of up to 10 years.
The red list includes:
- Cape Verde
- Democratic Republic of the Congo
- French Guiana
- Portugal (including Madeira and the Azores)
- South Africa
- United Arab Emirates (UAE)
An earlier version of this post inaccurately characterized England’s new border policy as applicable to all of the UK. This has been corrected.