Travellers returning from red list destinations could be facing paying an extra £500 to pay for their quarantine hotel stay.
Under plans reportedly being considered, the price could increase to more than £2,250 in a bid to stop people from making ‘unnecessary trips’ to high-risk countries.
Ministers are said to be frustrated that the taxpayer is subsidising the high cost of keeping passengers in the designated hotels for 10 days.
Currently, travellers pay £1,750 per person for the stay which includes two PCR Covid tests, transport from the airport to the hotel, and all their meals.
Since the UK launched the scheme in mid-February, around 30,000 travellers have stayed in the Government-approved hotels, according to The Telegraph.
A total of 60 countries are currently under the red category, including Turkey. a
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps insisted people ‘should not’ be travelling to red list destinations and the scheme is there only for the ‘most extreme of circumstances’.
He highlighted yesterday that the Government does not make a profit from the scheme – suggesting measures may have to be taken to curb the numbers of passengers using it.
Mr Shapps told the Commons: ‘The only people who should be coming back to government quarantine are British or Irish citizens, or people with permanent rights of residence.
‘And there should be a limit to the number of people who are still abroad and wishing to return.
‘I sometimes come across cases where people are still using the red list as if it is a case of “It’s ok, I can come back and hotel quarantine”.
‘That should not be the case.’
The next review of the travel list is expected to be on August 5.