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New setback for airlines as UK proposes fresh quarantine plan

Lucy Harley-McKeown
·2-min read
People arriving in the UK will face a 14 day quarantine period (Getty)
People arriving in the UK will face a 14 day quarantine period (Getty)

Players in the aviation industry are facing fresh setbacks, as the UK government plans to introduce a 14-day quarantine period for people arriving in the UK.

It follows several other countries in their attempts to stem the spread of coronavirus.

But airlines and airports have warned it would crush hopes of a resumption in travel and compound damage.

Industry body Airlines UK previously said the move would “effectively kill international travel” and cause “immeasurable damage” to the industry and wider UK economy.

It also said it would put people off travelling when lockdowns are lifted.

The policy, first reported by The Times, is expected to be announced on Sunday. Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Downing Street office declined comment.

READ MORE: People arriving in the UK from abroad could be quarantined for 14 days

Airlines UK said: “Nobody is going to go on holiday if they’re not able to resume normal life for 14 days, and business travel would be severely restricted.”

The Times report said lorry drivers bringing crucial supplies would be exempt from the quarantine. Travellers from Ireland, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man would also dodge the restrictions.

Big players in the industry such as IAG (IAG), the owner of British Airways, Vueling and Aer Lingus, have said they must cut costs across the board to weather the coronavirus crisis.

Air travel won't return to normal until at least 2023, its chief executive Willie Walsh said on Thursday.

Under the measures, which are likely to come into force in early June, travellers will have to provide the address at which they will self-isolate on arrival. Those found to be breaking the rules face fines of up to £1,000 or even deportation.