Dedicated 'red list' arrivals terminal opens at Heathrow Airport

1 June 2021, 07:54 | Updated: 1 June 2021, 23:34

Arrivals at “red list” Terminal 3 at Heathrow Airport is now blocked off
Arrivals at “red list” Terminal 3 at Heathrow Airport is now blocked off. Picture: LBC

By Asher McShane

Heathrow has started using a dedicated terminal for people arriving in the UK from countries on the Government's red list for travel.

There had been concern arrivals from nations like India were mixing with others in immigration queues at the airport.

The creation of the dedicated 'red list' terminal was first revealed by LBC last month.

But passengers travelling to the UK on connecting flights from red list locations continue to transit through the airport alongside those from green and amber countries.

The red list currently consists of 43 nations from which arrivals are deemed to present a high risk of importing coronavirus.

Passengers arriving in the UK after being in one of those destinations during the previous 10 days must spend 11 nights in a quarantine hotel, costing £1,750 for solo travellers.

Red list countries from where direct flights to the UK are permitted include India, the Philippines, Pakistan, Kenya and Bangladesh.

The dedicated terminal was created to deal with an influx of passengers from countries with high levels of Covid-19 infection.

READ MORE: Thousands vaccinated as Twickenham Stadium transformed into walk-in Covid jab centre

READ MORE: Hold off decision on June 21 lockdown lifting, BMA chair urges government

The location of the dedicated terminal will initially be Heathrow's Terminal 3 but is expected to move to Terminal 4 at a date yet to be confirmed.

The move follows concerns about "Red List" passengers mixing with passengers from Green and Amber list countries in long queues at airports.

A Heathrow spokesperson said: "Red list routes will likely be a feature of UK travel for the foreseeable future as countries vaccinate their populations at different rates.

"We're adapting Heathrow to this longer-term reality by initially opening a dedicated arrivals facility in Terminal 3 from 1 June for red list passengers arriving on direct flights.

"We will move this facility to Terminal 4 as soon as operationally possible."

According to a recent report, the UK is set to miss out on billions of pounds of spending from passengers arriving into Heathrow if the green list is not extended as part of an upcoming travel review.

Economic forecasting group the CEBR said its research suggested that business and leisure passengers arriving at the airport spend over £16 billion a year across the UK, sustaining jobs at thousands of businesses.

US visitors travelling through Heathrow are the largest source of inbound tourism revenue for the economy, with these passengers accounting for £3.74 billion, said the report.

There is a risk that US visitors could go elsewhere, as countries such as Italy and France prepare to welcome them back, it was warned.

The report was published as Heathrow is working with the Government to launch a dedicated red list arrivals facility, creating more capacity for arrivals from an expanded green list.

The facility will be launched on June 1 in Terminal 3 before being moved to Terminal 4.

Heathrow chief executive John Holland-Kaye said: "This research shows just how many businesses across the UK are losing out because of the Government's restrictions on access to overseas visitors and markets.

"The Government has the tools to protect both public health and the economy and ministers must unlock more low-risk destinations across Europe, as well as the US, as part of the next review on June 7."