Overseas travellers into Scotland face £1750 quarantine bill

Arrivals will have to spend ten days in a hotel room from Monday.

Overseas travellers into Scotland face £1750 quarantine bill Hollie Adams / Stringer via Getty Images
All travellers in Scotland must spend ten days in quarantine from Monday.

All international travellers into Scotland will have to pay £1750 for a ten-day hotel quarantine stay from Monday.

The move goes further than the rest of the UK, which has identified 33 ‘red list’ countries from which travellers will have to quarantine.

As well as having to pay for their accommodation, arrivals will be tested for coronavirus twice during their stay.

A total of 1300 rooms have been booked at six hotels near Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeen airports.

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Travellers on the way to Scotland must pre-book their room online through a UK Government system and face extra costs for family members.

A special welfare fund will be developed for people who “may struggle to meet the charges”, the transport secretary Michael Matheson said.

Non-essential travel to Scotland is already illegal and failure to comply with the new rules will be a criminal offence.

Matheson told parliament that border measures would play an “important role in suppressing new cases” of Covid-19 in Scotland.

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He told MSPs that the four nations of the UK had agreed a joint approach to contracting the transport and accommodation services for managed isolation.

However, he said creating a ‘red list’ of high-risk countries elsewhere in the UK was “not sufficient” and that Scotland needed to go further.

The Scottish Conservatives said there were “serious unanswered questions” in the quarantine plan.

Shadow transport secretary Graham Simpson said: “What is stopping people bypassing Scotland’s stricter quarantine rules by flying into England, Wales or Nothern Ireland and then entering Scotland?

“Given the SNP have decided to go further than the rest of the UK, they also need to ensure that our aviation and tourism sectors are given urgent and adequate financial support.

“I would also urge the government to explain how these restrictions will be enforced and what happens if travellers are unable to meet the significant cost of quarantine.”