By Caribbean News Global
LONDON, England – Data from the Joint Biosecurity Centre and Public Health England has indicated a significant change in both the level and pace of confirmed cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) leading to ministers removing three destinations from the current list of travel corridors.
The Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) has updated its travel advice to advise against all but essential travel to Croatia, Trinidad and Tobago and Austria. Additionally, Portugal has been added to the list of destinations that are exempted from the FCO’s global advisory against non-essential travel.
“People arriving into England from Croatia, Trinidad and Tobago and Austria from 4:00 am Saturday, August 22, 2020, will need to self-isolate for two weeks as the countries are removed from the travel corridors list,” department for transport and foreign & commonwealth office (FCO) said in a statement.
“The weekly incidence (cases) per 100,000 for Croatia has increased from 10.4 on 12 August to 27.4 on 19 August (164% increase). There has been a consistent increase in the weekly incidence rate of COVID-19 in Trinidad and Tobago over the past four weeks, with a 232 percent increase in weekly incidence (cases) per 100,000 between 12 and 19 August. In Austria, the weekly incidence (cases) per 100,000 of the population has increased from 10.5 on 13 August to 20.3 on 20 August (93% increase).
“Portugal has been added to the government’s travel corridor list following a decrease in confirmed cases of coronavirus. Passengers arriving in England from Portugal at or after 4am on Saturday 22 August will not need to self-isolate, so long as they haven’t been in or transited through any other non-exempt countries in the 14 days preceding their arrival,” the UK government departments said.
Infections from COVID-19 are on the rise across Europe. The government has made consistently clear it will take decisive action if necessary to contain the virus, which includes removing countries from the travel corridors list rapidly, if the public health risk of people returning from a particular country without self-isolating becomes too high. This means holidaymakers may find they need to self isolate on return to the UK and are advised to consider the implications of self-isolation on them and their families before making travel plans.
In addition, “People currently in Croatia, Trinidad and Tobago and Austria are encouraged to follow the local rules and check the FCO travel advice pages for further information. The government is urging employers to be understanding of those returning from these destinations who now will need to self-isolate. COVID-19 has profoundly changed the nature of international travel. Travellers should always check the latest advice from the FCO, given the potential for changing coronavirus infection rates to affect both the advice about travelling to other countries and rules about self-isolation on return.”
All travellers, including those from destinations on the travel corridors list, “will still be required to show a completed passenger locator form on arrival into the UK unless they fall into a small group of exemptions.”