Red List Arrival Terminal Opens at Heathrow Airport

Passengers will be guided to a coach heading to the Quarantine Hotel through the arrival area of ​​Heathrow Airport Terminal 5.

Passengers will be guided to a coach heading to the Quarantine Hotel through the arrival area of ​​Heathrow Airport Terminal 5.

A dedicated terminal for passengers arriving in the UK from countries at high risk of coronavirus infection has opened at Heathrow Airport.

Travelers arriving by direct flights from Red List countries are now via Terminal 3.

Heathrow said the top priority was to protect the general public and mitigate the risk of new variants.

There is 43 countries on the Red ListHowever, direct flights are only permitted from India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.

Direct flights from Kenya are also permitted, but the country is currently suspending air travel to the United Kingdom.

Only UK and Irish citizens or UK residents can travel from the countries on the list.

However, those who have stayed in Red List countries for the past 10 days will pay the hotel quarantine fee for 10 days after arrival, whether by direct flight or via another country. is needed.

However, there are concerns that travelers from the Red List area are mingling with other passengers in the immigration hall and may have to wait hours.

Appeared as a scientist advising the British government The country warned of signs of being in the early stages of the third wave Of coronavirus infection.

A spokeswoman for Heathrow Airport said, “The Red List route is likely to be a feature of travel in the UK in the near future, as countries vaccinate different proportions of their populations.

“We are adapting Heathrow Airport to this long-term reality by first opening a dedicated arrivals facility.”

She added that opening a facility is “very difficult to logistically”, but Heathrow said that as the number of passengers increased to match the government’s green-listed countries, border forces would do so. He added that he hopes to be able to carry out his mission more efficiently.

But for now, the current Red List includes mandatory Covid negative tests for all international arrivals, mandatory face covers, social distance, quarantine, stronger immigration hall cleaning, and better ventilation. The system continues.

Heathrow added that a dedicated arrival site would switch to Terminal 4 “as soon as operational”.

A government spokesman emphasized that Britain’s top priority is to protect the health of its people and to strengthen border control to reduce the risk of new variants being transmitted.

“We maintain 100% health checks at the border to safely resume international travel, and Heathrow’s new dedicated terminal for arriving from Red List countries allows passengers to be as safe and efficient as possible. It can be processed and moved to the next airport. A controlled quarantine facility, “she said.

“We continue to do everything we can to facilitate the process, such as deploying an e-gate upgrade program during the summer and deploying additional border force officers.”

Analysis Box by Caroline Davis, Transport Correspondent

Analysis Box by Caroline Davis, Transport Correspondent

It has been three and a half months since the government first introduced the quarantine hotel.

However, Red List passengers waited for hours at a time, sometimes in the same arrival hall as passengers from other low-risk countries, before heading to the hotel for 10 days of quarantine. Separate queues. But some people felt dangerous.

The idea of ​​a separate Red List dedicated device has come up before, but the question has always been who will pay for it.

After an incredibly low number of passengers for over a year, opening additional terminals was a huge cost, and Heathrow Airport wasn’t eager to bear the burden.

Some felt that it should be the government that submits the bill, as the Red List is a government policy.

Neither side has made it clear who is paying the cost, but it is understood that the government is now paying a significant portion of it.

Traveling abroad can continue to be very different for some time, as Heathrow expects to need a Red List terminal for some time.

Minimize queue time

The Home Office has told the BBC that border guards will mobilize additional staff to minimize waiting times for passengers who comply with British border health measures and maintain border security internationally. He said he has the right level of resources for him. The journey begins.

However, the Union of Public and Commercial Services (PCS) states that members of the Border Guard are “extremely concerned” about the health and safety issues that arise from the decision to open Terminal 3 as a dedicated Red List terminal. ..

A PCS spokesman said, “The decision was made in a very short period of time, no major social distance measures were implemented, and operational work was done without the necessary protection for border staff and passengers. There is a high possibility of being struck.

“This is also an under-planned initiative, and overtime will rely on volunteers to avoid overtime due to lack of staff.”

Dozens of countries are on the Red List, including India, Pakistan, Turkey, Brazil and South Africa.

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