Blanket quarantine will have major economic and social impacts
Responding to the announcement of the details for the 14-day quarantine period, Chief Executive of the Airport Operators Association Karen Dee said:
“We are disappointed that the Government has decided to go ahead with a simplistic, blanket approach to quarantining all arrivals, without any consultation with industry. This threatens to have very serious economic and social consequences, not just in aviation but in all sectors relying on aviation connectivity, without resulting in notably better public health outcomes than a more targeted approach. This must be reviewed more frequently than every three weeks.
“Airlines will be reluctant to fly if there is limited to no demand as a result of quarantine restrictions, hampering the travel of those key workers who have now been exempted.
“As our neighbours and key trading partners move towards a science-led, risk-based approach, the UK should do so as soon as possible, or risk being left behind. Industry proposals such as air bridges would facilitate travel from low-risk countries and protect the public from high-risk arrivals. This would enable the restart of aviation and support the UK’s economic recovery. Crucially, this also would give us time to get a testing regime in place for arriving passengers like Greece, Iceland and other countries are doing, as the next step to returning to a new normal.
“In the meantime, the Chancellor needs to provide further financial and business support to airports and travel operators to help the industry get through this prolonged period with limited to no revenue and ensure the sector is ready to restart in support of the UK economic recovery.”