Travellers from red-list countries forced to quarantine in hotels will be charged £1,750 for their stay, Health Secretary Matt Hancock has announced.
Those labelled as “high-risk” returning from the 33 countries currently on the red list will have to quarantine in an assigned hotel room for 10 days from the time of arrival.
Before they travel, travellers will have to book, through an online platform, and pay for a quarantine package, costing £1,750 for an individual travelling alone, which includes the hotel, transport and testing.
Hancock said the new booking system will go live on Thursday (11 February) and will be accompanied by full detailed guidance published by the government.
Passengers will only be able to enter the UK through a “small number of ports” that currently account for the vast majority of passenger arrivals.
When they arrive, they’ll be escorted to a designated hotel, which will be closed to guests who aren’t quarantining, for 10 days or for longer if they test positive for Covid-19 during their stay.
Those who fail to comply with the new rules will face fines of up to £10,000.
Hancock said: “We’ve contracted 16 hotels, for an initial 4,600 rooms, and we will secure more as they are needed.
“People will need to remain in their rooms, and of course will not be allowed to mix with other guests. And there will be visible security in place to ensure compliance, alongside necessary support – so even as we protect public health, we can look after the people in our care.”