Great Britain

France quarantine: Holidaymakers returning who break 14-day rules face £1,000 fines

BRITS returning from France who break the 14-day quarantine rules face a fine of up to £1,000.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps warned holidaymakers who flout the restrictions will be checked up on and punished.

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Brits have until 4am tomorrow morning to get back to the UK and avoid staying at home for two weeks, after coronavirus cases in France rose.

And if they miss the deadline they will have to fill out an online passenger locator form before they land in Britain - which has already caught a few returning holidaymakers out.

Mr Shapps told BBC Breakfast today: "I just want to stress it is very important that people do quarantine.

"Everybody returning to the UK, no matter where from, doesn't matter whether you're in a travel corridor country or a quarantine country, must at this stage fill in a passenger locator form.

"That is the law and you may well find that people call up to check where you are, and you'll be breaking the law if you were not quarantining, if that was a requirement for the country you'd come from."

"The reality is that in all of the things to do with coronavirus, there always has had to be a cut-off and we've seen this throughout, haven't we, in the way that rules have had to be implemented and, so, 'if we can do this, why can't we do that?', that's always going to be the case.

"What we have to do is provide clear guidance and, in this case, clear law in order to require people to quarantine."

The Government’s decision gave half a million Brits currently in France less than a day to get back if they want to avoid going into quarantine.

Brits caught short as they scramble home:

British tourists in France are being charged hundreds of pounds to return home before quarantine restrictions are imposed.

Air fares are more than six times higher than normal for flights from Paris to London on Friday, with the cheapest British Airways tickets being sold for £452.

The lowest priced Eurostar tickets available this morning were £210.

Travellers willing to pay these inflated fares could still miss out due to many services already being fully booked.

With flights fully booked and the Channel Tunnel packed, many will miss the deadline of 4am tomorrow.

Families with children now risk missing the first week of school as  14-day self-isolation measures are re-imposed.

Another 500,000 Brits due to travel to France in the coming weeks will have their holiday plans thrown into chaos.

The Netherlands and Malta were also added to the quarantine list last night.

Boris Johnson said yesterday that he had to be “absolutely ruthless” over imposing the travel rules, “even with our closest and dearest friends and partners”

The PM added: “I think everybody understands that.

“We can’t be remotely complacent about our own situation.

“Everybody understands that in a pandemic you don’t allow our population to be re-infected or the disease to come back in."

Quarantine Q&A:

Q: What does the quarantine involve?

A: ANYONE returning from France, Malta or the Netherlands will have to fill in an online passenger locator form upon arrival in the UK.
You will need to indicate how you travelled, your contact details and address where you will isolate for 14 days.

You can have necessities delivered but must stay away from others.

Q: What if I don’t quarantine?

A: YOU could be fined up to £1,000. If you move address after giving one for quarantine, and fail to update to the new one you can be fined up to £3,200.

Q: I’ve booked flights to a quarantine country. Can I get my money back if I don’t want to travel?

A: EASYJET and British Airways are allowing customers the chance to rebook, accept a credit note or get a refund.

Ryanair will not offer refunds but will allow you to change flight dates without a change fee. Many airlines plan to continue to fly so it is important to check.

Q: Will Eurotunnel and ferry crossings be cancelled? Will I get my money back?

A: FERRY firms and Eurotunnel are planning to continue services for now. If you choose not to travel contact them about your options.

Most are offering to postpone or rearrange crossings for later in the year if you have booked a flexible ticket.

Other tickets will be considered on a case-by-case basis but you may be allowed to rebook.

The Sun revealed that concerned medics intervened to warn the PM that France’s numbers were starting to spiral out of control.

Ministers had hoped cases would flatten so they would not have to remove it  from the “green list”  — countries where people do not have to self-isolate upon return.

But France recorded 2,669 new Covid-19 cases yesterday — a record outside of lockdown.

The infection rate over 14 days rose to 32.1 per 100,000.

Brits with no hope of getting back before the  changes will be able to claim Universal Credit if they are not paid during their self-isolation. 

However there are calls from backbench Tory MPs for the Government to pay the wages of tourists if they are caught out by rule changes while already away.

The Foreign Office will advise against all “non-essential” travel to France —  but it will  mean  those due to head there on holiday will be able to claim their cash back.

Don't turn up at ports or Eurostar to get home or you'll be disappointed, Grant Shapps warns

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