As we approach the end of 2020 and having weathered the second national lockdown, the UK is slowly making efforts to reopen for international business travel. Here is what business travellers can expect going forward.
England has launched a brand new Test to Release Program for international travellers from non-Travel Corridor countries starting from 15 December. This program allows you to take a COVID-19 test at your own expense with a Government-approved provider after five days of initial self-isolation. If your test is negative, you are released from the normal 14-day self-isolation requirement.
Starting from early 2021, if you are taking a short business trip of three days or less to England from a non-Travel Corridor country, you may be able to benefit from the proposed business travellers exemption, which will allow you to come out of self-isolation for business activities. However, you will not be allowed to engage in any other non-business activity such as social events. This exemption is aimed at allowing business meetings and events to happen without disruption.
Also from early 2021, there may be an exemption aimed at tourists, known as Tour Bubbles, allowing groups of travellers to travel together using private transport. Although aimed at tourists, this exemption may be useful to groups of business travellers or investors depending on their circumstances (for example project inspection or property tours).
The exemptions mentioned above have only been proposed recently and the rules surrounding them are yet to be published. For now, unless you are travelling to England from a Travel Corridor Country (https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-travel-corridors) you must complete a Passenger Locator Form 48 hours before you travel and self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival. If you have any questions, please contact us for advice.
The information in this blog is for general information purposes only and does not purport to be comprehensive or to provide legal advice. Whilst every effort is made to ensure the information and law is current as of the date of publication it should be stressed that, due to the passage of time, this does not necessarily reflect the present legal position. Gherson accepts no responsibility for loss which may arise from accessing or reliance on information contained in this blog. For formal advice on the current law please don’t hesitate to contact Gherson. Legal advice is only provided pursuant to a written agreement, identified as such, and signed by the client and by or on behalf of Gherson.