EasyJet, Ryanair and IAG launch legal action over gov's 14-day travel quarantine rules

EASYJET, Ryanair and British Airways have today launched legal action over the Government's 14-day travel quarantine rules.

The airlines confirmed this morning they have officially taken action in the courts to try and get the decision reversed.

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The airlines say that their argument is based on the fact that the quarantine rules are stricter for tourists than for people in the country who actually have Covid-19.

They argue that not only has been no consultation – the Government have not released any scientific evidence for it – but some incoming travellers are exempt from the rules while others are not.

The airlines are also asking why the policy is being put in place which would ban Brits from flying to areas of lower transmission, where the spread of coronavirus is less of a threat.

A joint statement from the air groups said: "British Airways, easyJet and Ryanair have launched their legal action against the UK government’s flawed quarantine which will have a devastating effect on British tourism and the wider economy and destroy thousands of jobs."

 

"The airlines have not yet seen any evidence on how and when proposed 'air bridges' between the UK and other countries will be implemented.

"Instead, they want the government to re-adopt its previous quarantine policy introduced on March 10, where quarantine is limited to passengers from 'high risk' countries.

"This would be the most practical and effective solution and enables civil servants to focus on other, more significant, issues arising from the pandemic while bringing the UK in line with much of Europe which is opening its borders mid-June."

At the start of this week the Government introduced a fresh enforced mandatory quarantine scheme for anyone coming into the country.

Anyone entering the country – including British nationals – will be forced to quarantine for 14-days, with anyone caught breaking the rules fined £1,000.

Air bridges are also being discussed, which would be an agreement between two countries to let people travel freely between them without needing to quarantine.

Despite this, Ryanair boss Michael O'Leary claims thousands of Brit families still plan to jet off on summer hols on July 1.

He added that that they already have full planes heading out to holiday destinations in places like Portugal, Spain and Italy next month.

He said earlier this week there is "no way" the Home Office can defend the new measures as it has no "scientific basis at all".

Other airlines and MPs have fought back furiously against the plans, saying they will cost thousands of jobs and continue to harm the economy.

There's no indication yet of when Brits will be able to travel with the current advice from the UK government remaining against all non-essential travel.

There are hopes, however, that this could change in the upcoming weeks.

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