New rules for travellers arriving in the UK come into force on 8 June.
Almost everyone now has to provide their journey and contact details by filling in an online public health passenger locator form before they travel to the UK. Most have to self-isolate for 14 days after they arrive.
The Home Office has published guidance on travellers who are exempt from the new border rules. Some people – such as diplomats – do not have to fill in the form. Other people have to fill in the form but do not have to self-isolate.
The guidance describes the documents which travellers need to show at the border as evidence that they are exempt from completing the form and/or from self-isolating. One of the exemptions covers people who live in the UK but work in another country and travel between the UK and country of work at least once a week. Another covers the reverse situation – people who live outside the UK but work in the UK and travel between the two countries at least once a week. These travellers are exempt from the self-isolation requirement. The guidance states:
You’ll need to show evidence that you reside in one country but work in the other and you should also be able to demonstrate that you travel between the two on a minimum of a weekly basis, for example, a season ticket.”
Many frequent travellers will not have season tickets. They should consider carrying a letter from their employer, evidence of their home address and evidence of their recent trips to and from the UK.
For those who are not frequent travellers but need to travel during the 14 day period of isolation, there is an exemption to leave your home if it is for the purpose of leaving England so this may be possible. We would advise those to whom this is relevant to seek advice on this option.
The policy will be reviewed every three weeks.
There are many scenarios which are not covered. If you or your business believe that certain individuals or situations not already covered by the exemptions should be included, please let us know as we are able to provide suggestions and feedback to UKVI directly or through other representative and industry bodies.