Travellers who have to stay in a quarantine hotel face an additional bill of £1,200 if they test positive for Covid-19, the government has announced.
The extra cost comes on top of the £1,750 fee for the price of their hotel stay and will apply to guests who are required to extend their stay beyond the initial 11 nights.
Details about the £152 daily cost of longer stays was only published on the government’s website on Monday (15 February), after some guests had already checked in.
What are the rules for travellers?
As of 4am on Monday (15 February), UK and Irish nationals and UK residents returning to England must quarantine in a hotel if they have been in a country at high risk of Covid-19 variants in the previous 10 days.
This applies even if they have travelled via the Common Travel Area (CTA), which includes the UK and Ireland.
In Scotland, the requirement covers arrivals from any country, unless they have travelled from the CTA.
Six hotels, near to Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow airports, have been block-booked to house travellers quarantining, with a combined total of up to 1,300 rooms available.
Those travelling from red list countries to Wales and Northern Ireland will be required to book and pay for quarantine in England, as neither country has any direct international flights.
Travellers may only arrive into Heathrow Airport, Gatwick Airport, London City Airport, Birmingham Airport, Farnborough Airport, or any military airfield or port.
The rules will also see travellers issued a fine of up to £10,000 if they fail to quarantine for the required period.
Costs for additional tests
Guests are allowed to leave the hotel after 11 nights, providing they receive a negative result from coronavirus tests taken on day two and day eight of their isolation.
A positive result from the first test will extend a guest’s stay by two nights, at a cost of £304.
If the second test returns a positive result, guests must remain in their room for an additional eight nights, paying an extra cost of £1,216.
The additional daily charges cost £152 for the first adult, £41 for an additional adult or child over 12, and £12 for a child aged between five and 12.
Asked what will happen if travellers cannot afford the additional fee, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “It is currently illegal to travel abroad for holidays anyway.
“We would expect people who are coming in from one of these red list countries to be able to cover their costs.”