Airline industry calls for simpler Passenger Locator Forms

WHO says travel bans are ineffective and won't stop Omicron. Image: pixabay

Airlines from around the globe have demanded that Britain create simpler passenger locator forms for travel into the nation. The Covid-19 pandemic brought in travel restrictions into almost every country but tourism bosses are claiming that the UK’s form is the worst of all. 

The online form must be completed in the 48 hours before arriving in the UK. Many European countries need you to supply documents on entry, but none are as complex as the UK’s, plus it is only available in English. 

Airlines are required to check the passenger locator forms before people board planes headed to the UK, and it was at the Airlines 2021 conference in London that many people voiced their despair at the document. 

The chief executive of the Dutch airline KLM, Pieter Elbers, said his assistant “almost asked for a payrise for sorting it out.”

Virgin Atlantic’s chief executive, Shai Weiss, accused the UK of acting like they “don’t have a vaccine” and said the bureaucracy and testing involved had increased instead of relaxing through the pandemic. From its introduction in the summer of 2020, the length of the form has increased from three pages to four. 

All countries are currently non-red-list for the UK, but the question that asks you the status of the countries you have travelled from remains. There are also extra questions regarding the mandatory day two test, and whether any islands have been visited in the 10 days prior to arrival in the UK. 

Also speaking at the Airlines 2021 event, the aviation minister, Robert Courts, said that the document was already a simpler passenger locator form than before. The government says the form was simplified in January 2021 and has evolved in line with changes in international travel rules.

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Written by

Claire Gordon


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