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Detailed information for those arriving in Guernsey in phase '5b' is published

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Friday 14 August 2020

Today the States of Guernsey has published detailed information for those arriving in the Bailiwick in phase '5b' of its Exit from Lockdown, which begins on Monday 17 August.

The new information and guidance can be found on https://covid19.gov.gg/guidance/travel

It includes guidance on what passengers need to know ahead of their arrival into the Bailiwick, such as what information they will need to provide and where they can find the latest list of countries designated Group B or Group C. All countries not listed will be considered as Group A countries.

It is important that travellers remember that only those arriving from a Group B country are eligible for testing on day 7 of their self-isolation and able to leave their self-isolation if that test is negative. They will then need to observe the rules of 'passive follow-up' until 14 days after their arrival. Travellers who have been in a Group A country in the proceeding 7 days will be required to self-isolate for 14 days. Group C countries are those with which Guernsey has an 'air bridge'. The Isle of Man is the only jurisdiction that is currently categorised as Group C.

Today more detail on the criteria by which Public Health determine which countries are part of Group A, B or C is also published. These countries are reviewed daily and the list is regularly updated, and anyone travelling should be aware it is entirely possible that countries may be re-categorised at short notice.

Dr Nicola Brink, Director of Public Health said:

"We have set out our criteria for categorising countries as A, B or C. The criteria focuses primarily on the prevalence of COVID-19 in a country and therefore the potential risk of travel or tourism-related spread to our islands. The criteria also takes into account other factors, such as how widely a country is testing its population which could impact on the data's reliability.

Initially, we are keeping things simple and determining the categories country by country. However, we will be looking at if we can implement regional classifications of a country in the future. We're continuing to review whether this is effective and workable, and we may move to regional categories in some cases, in the coming weeks."

Surveyor Rebecca Falla of the Guernsey Border Agency said:

"The approach we're taking now is not the same as when we ran the pilot for testing on day 7, because of the added complexity of treating countries as Group A or B, something we all remember from the early days of the pandemic. Combining those two measures means we are doing more to mitigate the risks against new cases coming into the Bailiwick, but it also makes the process more complicated.

Our officers and representatives will be working hard to help people through that process as they arrive, and where there are questions we will do our best to answer them. But it is an entirely new process and there are bound to be some teething problems, so I'm hoping those travelling will be patient with us if we find there are issues we need to iron out in the first few days."

What happens when you arrive in Guernsey during phase 5b

Passengers arriving with a commercial airline or ferry operator will be provided with a form to complete before they land. In that form, they will be asked to list the countries they have visited in the 7 days before their travel to Guernsey.

When they arrive, they will need to present this form along with their ID to a Guernsey Border Agency representative.

In most cases the Guernsey Border Agency will be able to confirm to the visitor if they are eligible for the option of testing on day 7 of their self-isolation, or if they must self-isolate for a full 14 days.

In any case where the visitor's travel history is unclear or further information is required, they will be informed that they need to self-isolate for 14 days. The Guernsey Border Agency will then review their information further. Where those individuals are found to be eligible for testing on day 7, they will be contacted directly.

Please note that these measures are in place to protect the health and wellbeing of the Bailiwick of Guernsey's community, however they may mean it takes more time to make your way through arrivals. We would like to thank visitors in advance for their patience.

After providing the relevant information to the Guernsey Border Agency, they can then leave the airport or harbour to travel directly to the location where they will be self-isolating.

Those arriving into the Bailiwick of Guernsey on a private aircraft or vessel, will also be required to fill out a form and provide the same information on arrival to a Guernsey Border Agency representative.

In general, travellers are expected to arrange their own travel for their test, either using their own private transport or a taxi.

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