Europe

Coronavirus: More flights to bring home stranded British travellers

The Foreign Office has said it is stepping up plans to help Britons stranded overseas by coronavirus travel restrictions to return to the UK.

The government has announced extra charter flights from Bolivia, Ecuador, Philippines and India as another 10 airlines join the scheme.

The flights will start this week from the Indian centres of Delhi, Goa and Mumbai.

Passengers hoping to be on these flights are being told to check the government’s travel advice for India, which will be updated with details when bookings open.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said on Monday that 1,450 British travellers have already come home on chartered flights

Other flights this coming week include those from Peru, Ghana, Tunisia and Algeria and the new flights announced from Ecuador, Bolivia, India and the Philippines are expected to bring thousands more people home.

There are now 14 airlines involved, including British Airways, Norwegian, TUI, Ryanair, Virgin Atlantic, Titan, easyJet and Jet2.

Last month the Foreign Office advised against all non-essential overseas travel and it has now extended that advice indefinitely.

The government is also working with cruise company Holland America to get flights to return passengers on the Zaandam and Rotterdam cruise ships.

Last week TUI flew around 40 people from the Marella Explorer cruise ship from Mexico to the UK.

Britons arriving back in the UK are not being made to undergo a period of self-isolation, as returning travellers are in many other countries.

The advice from the government is for them to go straight home from the airport, avoiding public transport if possible, and then to abide by the same rules as the rest of the country.

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