The United Kingdom is once again getting a little stricter with international arrivals – all thanks to the new Omicron variant.
Since August, vaccinated tourists from the United States have been able to visit the UK without having to quarantine upon arrival, but as of November 30 that ruling has changed.
From 4am tomorrow (Tuesday 30 November), all international arrivals must take a PCR test on or before day 2 and self isolate until they have received a negative test result.
— Department of Health and Social Care (@DHSCgovuk) November 29, 2021
International arrivals must now take a COVID PCR test by the end of the second day of their arrival in the country and must quarantine until they receive a negative result. Unvaccinated tourists must still quarantine for ten days and take a COVID test on day two and day eight.
Southern African countries have now been added to the UK’s “Red List” – meaning people arriving from South Africa, Angola, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Malawi, Mozambique, Eswatini, Lesotho, Botswana, and Zambia are not allowed to enter the United Kingdom unless they are citizens or permanent residents.
The UK Government said during a statement the new measures have been “introduced as a precaution while more information is gathered and assessed on the variant’s transmissibility and any possible effect on our vaccines.”
“The Omicron variant contains a large number of spike protein mutations as well as mutations in other parts of the viral genome, with early indications suggesting this variant may be more transmissible,” Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s office said in a statement.
The precautionary new travel restrictions will be reviewed in three weeks.