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Hotel quarantine website taken offline on day of launch

12 February 2021 by
Hotel quarantine website taken offline on day of launch

The government's hotel quarantine website was taken out of service yesterday just minutes after it launched and was still offline this morning.

The website, which those returning from ‘red list' countries must use to book their 10-day stay in an approved hotel, was taken offline soon after it was unveiled at 1pm, the BBC reported.

As of 5pm, a message apologising for inconvenience was still showing, despite a note stating that the site was expected to be back online by 4pm.

A message on gov.uk this morning still read: "Due to a minor technical issue, the link to the booking portal in this guidance will not be available until later today. Please return to this page later if you wish to make a booking."

Accessing the website itself directly still appears possible.

The Department of Health and Social Care said rooms were available "and travellers will be able to book through the site imminently".

Under new tighter border restrictions, from Monday residents of the UK and Ireland returning from 33 countries will be required to stay at a quarantine hotel under guard for 10 days on arrival.

The stays, which also include mandatory testing on the second and eighth day and transport from the airport or port, cost £1,750 per person.

On Tuesday, the government confirmed it had secured 4,600 rooms at 16 hotels in England, and 1,300 rooms across six hotels in Scotland, and announced punitive punishments for non-compliance.

The government is keeping secret which hotels have been selected "for commercial reasons". Of the hotel groups contacted by The Caterer, some confirmed they were not among the 16 selected, while others declined to comment.

Health secretary Matt Hancock said there would be "firm enforcement" with prison sentences of up to 10 years for those who lie on passenger locator forms, and fines of up to £10,000 for those who fail to quarantine in assigned hotels.

by Travel Weekly Reporters

TagsHotels
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