Having introduced a 14-day quarantine requirement for inbound voyagers on Monday, June 8, after waiting almost two weeks to do so, the UK government will rescind the rule as early as June 29, according to assurances given to an ad hoc pressure group.
Paul Charles, one of the leaders of ‘Quash Quarantine,’ said on Tuesday that the government has indicated that the rule will end after its first review, due 21 days after coming into force. Mr Charles said the group has “received private assurances from senior government sources that travel corridors will be in place from June 29”.
He added: “We urge the government to signal to the travel industry publicly and urgently that this is the case, as well as amend FCO [Foreign and Commonwealth Office] advice on non-essential travel.”
Meanwhile, BA, easyJet and Ryanair have started legal action to have the quarantine measure overturned. To date, more than 500 travel companies have complained about the rule, with one critic calling it “too much, too late.”
A UK government spokesperson told Sky News: “It’s important to remember what these measures are all about – protecting public health, avoiding a second peak of this deadly virus – and that means managing the risk of cases being imported from abroad.
“We are exploring a range of options to increase travel, underpinned by the evidence shows is safe, including examining how international travel corridors could safely open up routes.”
The major problem with travel corridors is that they depend on the goodwill of destination countries. A foreign ministry source in Spain told Reuters that there were no discussions with Britain on a travel corridor, and Madrid hoped for a European Union-wide travel deal. “Spain has called for a common (EU-wide) approach to opening the borders. If this is not done, it will establish its own criteria,” the source said.