Last night, France was removed from the list of safe countries people can travel to without needing to isolate for 14 days. The Netherlands, Monaco, Malta, Turks & Caicos and the island of Aruba were also removed from the “air bridge” list. The country experienced a huge spike in coronavirus cases, leading the government to take action.
According to the Department for Transport, data from France shows that newly reported cases of coronavirus had increased by 66 percent.
The country’s case rate per 100,000 was recorded as 32.1 cases per 100,000 people in France.
The cut off point for the new rules is 4am on Saturday, August 15.
After this time, travellers will be required to quarantine themselves for two weeks.
The new restrictions apply to people returning to England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Now, easyJet has said that it will continue to operate a “full schedule” despite the new measures in place.
A spokesperson for the budget airline said: “easyJet notes the government’s decision to impose a quarantine requirement for those travelling from France, Malta and the Netherlands.
“We plan to operate our full schedule in the coming days.
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“Customers who no longer wish to travel can transfer their flights without a change fee or receive a voucher for the value of the booking.
“Should any flights be cancelled for later in August customers will be notified and informed of their options which includes transferring to an alternative flight free of charge, receiving a voucher or applying for a refund via a webform on our dedicated Covid Help Hub at easyJet.com.”
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps revealed the new measures last night.
Today, he appeared on BBC Breakfast to discuss the quarantine measures.
He told the show that it would not be necessary for people to quarantine if they can return to the UK before 4am on August 15.
The MP also urged people returning before then to be vigilant for the symptoms of coronavirus.
He said: “It’s a practical approach as well which has enabled all fours parts of the United Kingdom – Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and England – to implement the same time at 4am where there are no flights in the air at least tomorrow.
“But, look, I accept your point, you can always argue one way or the other.
“We have to make a decision on it and we have to do that based on science and medicine, and that’s what we’ve done, we’ve taken the advice and implemented it on that basis.”
He added: “What I would say to everybody is look out for the signs, everyone knows what we’re talking about – the persistent cough, the high temperature, the change in taste or smell, so everyone should look out for those signs.
“But, no, it’s not necessary to quarantine unless you’re coming back after 4am on Saturday and those are the rules.”
Mr Shapps has estimated that an estimated 160,000 holidaymakers are expected to return to the UK from France.
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