Following Matt Hancock’s revelation the new coronavirus “strain” is “out of control” nations around the world rapidly shut their borders to UK travellers. Germany has since extended its travel ban on British arrivals until January 9, 2021.
Fears are rife in Germany of the new strain which is currently virulent in the UK and the threat it will spread to Europe.
The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) has updated its travel advice in line with the latest changes.
“The German Government has banned all air passenger flights between the UK and Germany from 2300 (UK time) on Sunday 20 December,” it states.
“Travellers should consult their airline operator before travelling.
“The ban does not currently apply to other forms of transport, though further restrictions may be introduced with little notice.
“All those arriving in Germany from the UK are currently required to self-isolate for ten days.
“If you are returning to the UK from Germany on or after 4am on 7 November, you will need to self-isolate on your return.”
Following the announcement of the new variant, Prime Minister Boris Johnson axed Christmas plans and slammed parts of London and the south-east into Tier 4 restrictions.
He stated the risk was “really very low” for an individual to cause a mass outbreak.
Border closures have also gone beyond the EU.
Nations including Canada, Israel, Turkey and Saudi Arabi have also shut their borders to British travellers.
However, scientific advisors say they are unsure whether the rapid spread was actually due to the new strain or more social contact between people in the impacted regions.
“I hope that everybody can see that as soon as we were briefed as a government of the fast transmissibility of this new strain at about 3.15pm on Friday afternoon,” said Boris Johnson during a press conference on Monday evening.
“We lodged all the necessary information with the World Health Organisation and we took prompt and decisive action the very next day to curb the spread of the variant within the UK.”