Fines for breaking travel rules

By | Category: Travel rumblings

According to West Midlands Police, four people have been fined £10,000 each for failing to declare last Monday that they had come from a country on the “red” list.

cartoon of angry suitcase
Lying on your travel declaration fine will get you fined © Dan Sperrin

All four flew into Birmingham airport where Border Control charged them the maximum file.

The story has been widely reported around the world which is probably the intention of the maximum fines.

It shows both to the UK and the world that the British government is set on enforcing the rules on people coming in from those 33 countries on the “red” list be their arrival on a direct flight or via a more circuitous route.

As I mentioned, the fines were issued on Monday – the first day of the new rules. Now, a week on, there has been little news on how many other people have been fined. Surely others will have tried to evade the rules?

Is this good news that the fines have deterred others from breaking the rules?

Separately but connected to evasion of the current travel laws is the news from the industry newsletter, TravelMole that 30% of travel agents polled by them said that they were booking leisure travel despite leisure travel being illegal.

If the results of the survey are accurate then surely travel agents that are continuing to sell leisure travel are guilty of breaking the law as well. Shouldn’t their trade body, ABTA, be reminding them of this and threatening expulsion if they fail to comply?

In addition a few well-chosen fines or prosecutions would remind the industry that travel for holiday purposes is still banned.

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