The United Kingdom has banned entry to the U.K. for visitors arriving from Burundi, Rwanda and the United Arab Emirates in an effort to limit the spread of a new COVID-19 variant. These three countries have been added to the Home Office’s “red list” of more than 30 countries from which visitors are not permitted to travel to the U.K.

Key Points:

  • From 1 p.m. on Jan. 29, 2021, visitors from Burundi, Rwanda and the United Arab Emirates will no longer be allowed to enter the U.K. Direct passenger flights from the UAE will also be suspended.
  • British, Irish and third-country nationals with residence rights who are returning from these three countries or have spent time in these countries in the 10 days before arrival to the U.K. will still be allowed entry. However, such travellers will be required to self- isolate for 10 days and will not be eligible for the Test to Release Scheme.

Additional Information: People who have been in or transited through the “red list” countries in the last 10 days are not permitted to travel to the U.K. As for travelers from Burundi, Rwanda and the UAE, this does not include British, Irish nationals and third-country nationals with residence rights (for instance a Skilled Worker visa), who will be able to enter the U.K. but must self-isolate for 10 days and cannot use the Test to Release Scheme.

The full “red list” is as follows: Angola, Argentina, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Burundi, Cape Verde, Chile, Colombia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ecuador, Eswatini, French Guiana, Guyana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Portugal (including Madeira and the Azores), Rwanda, Seychelles, South Africa, Suriname, Tanzania. United Arab Emirates (UAE), Uruguay, Venezuela, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

The U.K. government previously barred entry to visitors from most South American countries and Portugal in mid-January 2021.

Analysis & Comments: Employees located in the countries listed above who need to travel to the U.K. may want to discuss their travel plans with a Deloitte professional. While visiting the U.K. from these countries is not permitted, British and Irish nationals and those holding a valid U.K. residence visa or work permit may still be permitted to travel. Travelers should also regularly check with their travel provider or airline in anticipation of any potential disruption to flights. The response to the COVID-19 pandemic continues to develop, and Deloitte will provide additional updates as information becomes available. Please check Deloitte’s COVID-19 Digital Map, available here, for information on travel restrictions and immigration changes in other countries.

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