<p>First in: Côte Des Flandres, a DFDS ferry from Calais, arrived in Dover at 4.04am</p>

First in: Côte Des Flandres, a DFDS ferry from Calais, arrived in Dover at 4.04am

Thousands of passengers arriving into UK today benefit from eased travel testing rules

Nothing has changed for unvaccinated travellers: they must continue to self-isolate and take multiple PCR tests

Simon Calder
Travel Correspondent
Friday 07 January 2022 12:15
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Thousands of passengers have arrived in the UK since the travel rules were eased at 4am this morning.

Fully vaccinated travellers no longer need to take a pre-departure test, nor self-isolate on arrival until they get a negative test result.

The first arrival was Côte Des Flandres – a DFDS ferry from Calais that arrived in Dover at 4.04am.

Few travellers were on board, due to the travel ban currently imposed by France on the UK.

The first aircraft to arrive were at London Heathrow: Cathay Pacific from Hong Kong touched down at 4.36am, followed four minutes later by British Airways from Lagos and Qantas flight 1 from Sydney and Darwin.

At Manchester, a Tui flight from Barbados was first to land after the change in rules, at 5am.

According to data on the tracking service Flightradar24, passengers on board a delayed Tui flight from Costa Rica to Gatwick would be required to self-isolate at home until they get a negative result from their post-arrival PCR tests.

The Boeing 787 was operating flight 77 from Liberia to the Sussex airport.

Had the flight been delayed by a further 13 minutes, they would have avoided the need to quarantine. While the plane arrived at the gate at Gatwick’s North Terminal just after 4am, the time that counts is when the wheels touch the runway.

It is not clear whether passengers were on board or whether it was an “empty leg” flight; The Independent is seeking clarification from Tui.

The UK testing regime has now reverted to the rules that prevailed from 24 October until 30 November – before they were toughened in order to “buy time” as the Omicron variant of Covid-19 spread across the UK.

Tight restrictions remain in place in many destinations worldwide – including a general travel ban imposed by France on the UK shortly before Christmas, and strict testing rules for many other countries.

Nothing has changed for unvaccinated arrivals to the UK. They must continue to self-isolate for 10 days and take multiple PCR tests.

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