Pair fined £10,000 each for avoiding hotel quarantine after Dubai trip

People surf in waves off Jumeira beach near the Burj al Arab hotel in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2021. Dubai replaced its top health official on Sunday after coronavirus cases in the United Arab Emirates, of which it is part, spiked in recent weeks. Photographer: Christopher Pike/Bloomberg via Getty Images
The pair took a number of flights back to try and avoid having to isolate (Picture: Bloomberg via Getty Images)

A man and a woman have each been handed £10,000 fines for failing to quarantine after returning to the UK from Dubai.

The pair, from the Wirral, took a number of flights back in an attempt to avoid having to isolate, but their journey was tracked and they were issued with fixed penalty notices.

Dubai is currently included on the government’s red list of 33 countries deemed to be at high risk for Covid-19.

Chief Inspector Chris Barnes said their actions had been ‘selfish, inconsiderate and potentially dangerous’.

A spokesman for Merseyside Police said officers received a report last Tuesday that a man and woman had failed to quarantine after returning from Dubai.

Following an investigation, both were issued on with a £10,000 fine on Friday and transported to a designated quarantine hotel.

Travellers arriving in England must quarantine in a hotel if they have been in a red list country, such as Portugal, the United Arab Emirates, South America and southern Africa – in the past 10 days.

DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - FEBRUARY 24: Dubai city skyline is seen from The Five hotel on The Palm on February 24, 2021 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Dubai is open for business, excepting foreign tourists and gradually kickstarting its economy embarking on one of the worlds most aggressive vaccination programs. (Photo by Paula Bronstein/Getty Images)
The United Arab Emirates is included on the government’s red list (Picture: Paula Bronstein/Getty Images)

Chief Inspector Barnes said: ‘Strict rules around international travel have been put in place by the Government for a reason, and to disregard them in this way is selfish, inconsiderate, and potentially dangerous.

‘Currently, the regulations mean that if you are a British or Irish national, or you have residence rights in the UK and are returning from a country on the foreign travel red list, you must quarantine in a Government-approved hotel for 10 days.

‘If you are required to quarantine at a hotel, you can only arrive in England at certain ports of entry.

‘In this instance, the pair in question avoided a direct flight route back from Dubai to one of the specified airports in an attempt to evade this process. However, this was ultimately unsuccessful and has now resulted in a significant fine of £10,000 each.

‘I hope this incident sends out a clear message to anyone considering breaching travel regulations in this way that we will not tolerate it, and you will be dealt with robustly.

‘We are at a crucial point in the pandemic and it’s vital that everyone continues to abide by the restrictions so that we can meet the criteria needed for lockdown to ease. By not doing so, you are not only jeopardising this process, but recklessly putting your health and the health of others at risk.’

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Pair fined £10,000 each for avoiding hotel quarantine after Dubai trip