Holidays 2020: BA, Ryanair & easyJet consider challenging 14-day quarantine rules

Holidays this summer were looking unlikely but as many European countries begin to slowly reopen their borders, a trip abroad for Britons was looking like it could be on the cards. However, holiday hopes for Britons were soon dashed when the UK government announced plans to bring in quarantine rules. According to Home Secretary Priti Patel, anyone arriving in the UK from tomorrow will have to quarantine for 14 days.

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That includes UK citizens arriving in the UK after being on holiday.

The only exceptions to the rules are certain job occupations and those arriving from the Common Travel Area which includes the Republic of Ireland, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man.

Anyone caught breaking the rules could face a fine of £1,000.

Passengers arriving in the UK must also fill out an online form 48 hours before they travel back to the UK.

The new guidance issued to airlines and airports states that passengers and airlines could face big fines if they do not comply with the new rules, as reported by the Daily Telegraph.

The rules said “carriers should remind passengers that they could be subject to criminal sanctions upon arrival” if they do not fill out the forms or follow the rules.

The document was given to airline and airport bosses late Friday afternoon.

They were then told the rules will need to be implemented by Monday.

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But now easyJet, Ryanair and British Airways are all allegedly planning to try and block the 14-day quarantine rules, according to The Sun on Sunday.

The aviation sector has said that the quarantine rules will “close down Britain”.

A letter was sent to the UK government on Friday which said that the new measures were actually more stringent than those imposed on those who test positive for COVID-19.

According to the UK government, people with coronavirus can isolate for just seven days.

The letter, which was seen by The Sunday Times said: “In our view, the government has failed to identify a valid justification for the blanket nature of the regulations, especially given the extremely severe nature of the self-isolation provisions that apply.”

The letter was sent to the government’s top lawyer procurator general Sir Jonathan Jones.

The letter was also signed by budget airlines easyJet and Ryanair.

Currently, there are also reportedly no published rules for regions outside of England such as Wales which airlines have questioned.

Ryanair, BA and easyJet also allegedly expressed their frustration that people flying into the UK from a country with a lower ‘R-rate’ have to follow quarantine measures.

easyJet told Express.co.uk: easyJet confirms that it intends to support any legal action as a co-claimant. We cannot comment any further.”

Future plans have also been discussed to test passengers for coronavirus before they board the flight to help kickstart the aviation industry, according to the Sun on Sunday.

A Whitehall source told the paper: “People talk about tests on arrival — but the reality is you want to test before they take off. That will be the long-term goal.”

IAG boss Willie Walsh, the company which owns British Airways, said the government’s decision to enforce the quarantine rules was “terrible”.

He told Sky News on Friday: “We think it’s irrational, we think it’s disproportionate, and we are giving consideration to a legal challenge to this legislation.”

Downing Street declined to comment on the legal proceedings.

BA and Ryanair have all been contacted by Express.co.uk separately for comment.

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