The UK is set to close all travel corridors from Monday to "protect against the risk of as yet unidentified new Covid strains".

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has ordered from 4am on Monday, 18 to protect the UK against new coronavirus strains, ending the quarantine exemption for arrivals from selected nations.

Mr Johnson said: "Yesterday we announced that we’re banning flights from South America and Portugal and to protect us against the risk from as-yet-unidentified strains we will also temporarily close all travel corridors from 4am on Monday.

"Following conversations with the devolved administrations, we will act together so this applies across the whole of the UK."

This means that passengers travelling to Scotland from outside the UK will be required to isolate for ten days on return.

Passengers must also have a valid negative Covid test result, which was taken no more than three days before the scheduled time of departure.

The public have been reminded that travel to or from Scotland without a reasonable excuse is not permitted.

Here's what you need to know:


Can I still fly home to Scotland?

Yes, but anyone flying into the country from overseas will have to show proof of a negative Covid test before setting off.

What do I need to do before travelling?

Passengers travelling to Scotland from outside the Common Travel Area must have a valid negative Covid-19 test result, taken no more than three days before the scheduled time of departure.

This will be checked by operators, and passengers with a positive test result or an invalid certificate will be refused boarding.

What happens if I do not follow the new rules?

If you fail to comply with any of these self-isolation measures then you may be fined £480 in Scotland under a fixed penalty notice.


Do I still have to quarantine if I get a negative result?

Yes, if you are arriving from a country not on the Government’s travel corridor list.

People travelling from this limited group of countries currently do not need to self-isolate when arriving to Scotland.

But travellers coming from destinations not on the list will be required to self-isolate for 10 days, regardless of a negative test result.

Self-isolation rules apply to all travel to Scotland, by train, ferry, coach, air or any other route

What is a travel corridor?

Travel corridors are specifically related to quarantines and whether or not you will need to self-isolate when returning from a country.

This list is usually determined by the Department of Transport and looks at factors such as natural disasters, political unrest and, as of this year, coronavirus.

The advice is determined by the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO).

Will I get my money back if I’ve booked a holiday I can no longer go on?

If your flight is still going ahead and nothing has changed in your destination, you are not automatically entitled to a refund.

But many aircraft are likely to be grounded from Thursday due to the new restrictions, meaning people with existing bookings will be due a refund.

If I am entitled to a refund, how quickly will I get my cash?

UK consumers are protected under European laws which state that they should receive full cash refunds within seven days for cancelled flights and 14 days for package holidays that do not take place.

But since the coronavirus outbreak many people have faced difficulties obtaining payouts from airlines and holiday firms.

What has the Scottish Government said?

Health Secretary Jeane Freeman said the measure was a "direct response to the new variant of the virus".

The ban does not apply to UK and Irish nationals or EU nationals with UK settled status. But Ms Freeman said anyone travelling back from the locations "will have to self-isolate for 10 days".

Speaking at the Scottish Government’s daily coronavirus briefing she added: "That applies to anyone in their household as well, without exception."

But Professor Leitch warned today that “The problem with travel just now is that the UK is exporting virus – not importing virus.


"The public health principle here is don’t take virus from high prevalence areas to low – other countries are banning our travel, not the other way around.

"When and if we get this prevalence down, we will have to take very serious decisions around international and national travel – that might be between the islands and Scotland, it might be between Wales and Scotland – it might be internationally.

"We have to have an importation policy. The WHO (World Health Organization) has said since the beginning of this pandemic, one of the things you require to manage this pandemic is something top stop importation of the virus."