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Safer Travel Update 26/05/2021

May 26, 2021

UK and international travel classifications to come into effect

Competent Authority Ministers have confirmed that, from Friday, 28 May at 00:01, national level UK and international travel classifications will come into effect, as previously announced.

From Friday, 28 May:

  • The UK (England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, Bailiwick of Guernsey and the Isle of Man) will adopt individual national classifications
  • International travel classifications for the rest of the world will resume
  • To establish a passenger’s 14-day travel history, all UK and international classifications coming into effect on the 28 May will be retrospectively applied for 14 days
  • To qualify for a Green travel history, travellers must have spent the previous 14 nights in a Green area, based on the classifications assigned on 28 May
  • Green arrivals will now require a day 0 and day 8 PCR test and must isolate until their first negative test result. The testing and isolation requirements for Amber and Red arrivals remain unchanged
  • The COVID Status Certification scheme will start, allowing ‘Green Light’ status for Islanders and visitors who have been fully vaccinated within the Common Travel Area (CTA) with a MHRA approved vaccine 2 weeks before travelling. This means they will require a day 0 test only and no isolation if coming from a Green or Amber area. Passengers with a Red travel history will be classified Red regardless of their vaccination status.

The new national classifications for the UK will show:

  • England, Wales, Bailiwick of Guernsey and the Isle of Man classified as Green
  • 15 Red areas in the UK where the emergency brake has been applied where COVID-19 case rates have increased due to the B1.617.2 variant of concern, first identified in India. They are: Bedford, Blackburn with Darwen, Bolton, Burnley, Kirklees, Leicester, North Tyneside, Hounslow, Hyndburn, Rossendale, Clackmannanshire, East Renfrewshire, Glasgow City, East Dunbartonshire, Renfrewshire
  • Scotland and Northern Ireland classified as Amber.

From now, all classifications will be published on a Thursday and come into effect on the following Tuesday at 00:01.

The emergency brake data will be run twice a week and published with at least 48 hours’ notice before any changes. The Red classification will apply for a minimum of 14 days.

International travel classifications will be based on the UK Joint Biosecurity Centre traffic light system, except where Jersey has direct connections with a country. So the Republic of Ireland, France, Madeira, Majorca and Germany will be assessed using the Government of Jersey’s own ratings.

All tests are provided free of charge for people arriving in Jersey and are processed in the on-Island testing lab, with a current average test turnaround time of less than eight hours.

The Children’s Safer Travel policy and policy for schools will come into effect from Monday, 7 June. A blanket Green policy for all children and young people under the age of 18 who are travelling from Green or Amber regions will be adopted over the summer months.

Children under the age of 11 years old arriving from a Green or Amber region:

  • will not be required to register for travel using the pre-travel registration form
  • will not be required to undergo PCR testing.

Young people aged 11-17 years old arriving from a Green or Amber region:

  • will be required to register for travel using the pre-travel registration form
  • will be required to undergo a PCR test upon arrival and on day 8
  • will be required to isolate until the negative result of a day 0 test.

As part of the school travel policy, children should not return to school or college if:

  • they are subject to a period of isolation
  • any member of their household is subject to a period of isolation for any reason (unless the isolating person can isolate completely separately from all other household members)
  • anyone in their household, or anyone they have travelled with, is awaiting the result of a Day 0 test result.

Chief Minister, Senator John Le Fondré, said: “When Ministers made the decision a couple of weeks ago to move to national classifications for the UK, infection rates were on a downward trend. Ministers have reviewed the options for travel classifications from 28 May with the recent emergence of the B1.617.2 variant of concern and have agreed that continuing to national classifications remains the best option.

“The decision has been made based on factors including public health risk, the excellent vaccination progress both locally and in the UK, and the short and long-term economic impact to the Island. The revised policy will provide greater clarity and confidence for Islanders and visitors, as well as supporting connectivity with the UK and other destinations over the summer months.

“Having reviewed the latest data from the UK, alongside the Minister for Health and Social Services and officers from Public Health, 15 areas of concern in the UK have been identified where the B1.617.2 variant is prominent. The Minister for Health and Social Services has applied the emergency brake for these lower tier areas, so they will be classified as Red.”

Travellers still need to declare their 14-day travel history when completing their pre-departure forms. All arriving passengers must check the up to date classifications of where they have stayed in the past 14 nights. The testing and isolation requirements will be based on the highest classification of all the places a passenger stayed during that period.

Chief Minister, Senator John Le Fondré, added: “Despite Scotland and Northern Ireland being classified as Amber, passengers arriving from these countries who have been fully vaccinated two weeks before travel will be allocated a ‘Green Light’ status, because of their lower risk. This means there is no isolation requirement, but passengers must declare their vaccination status before travelling, take a PCR test on arrival and show evidence of their vaccination status on request when arriving in Jersey.

“46% of Islanders over the age of 18 are now fully vaccinated and will benefit from reduced testing and isolation requirements when returning to Jersey under the COVID Status Certification scheme.”

Government of Jersey News Release.

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