Who is policing the quarantine in the UK?

in News · 27-07-2020 17:25:00 · 6 Comments

Tourists returning from Portugal are still being forced to quarantine upon arrival in the UK however the latest police data reveals that only one person has been issued a fine for not self isolating after arriving in the UK.

Data released today by the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC), relating to the period between 7 July and 20 July, shows that only eight Covid-19 related fines were issued by police forces in England and none were issued in Wales.

A breakdown of the data reveals that six Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs) were issued under regulations surrounding the wearing of a face covering on public transport in the UK, while in the same period only one person was issued a fine for not self-isolating after arriving in England, although this only reflects fines issued by the police and does not include those from the UK Border Force.

National Police Chiefs’ Council Chair, Martin Hewitt said: “As expected the number of fines police forces are issuing continues to fall as lockdown restrictions are further eased.

“However there are still some restrictions in place and they remain important for the protection of the public’s health and wellbeing. Police will continue to engage, explain, encourage and only as a last resort will we use enforcement.

“We all need to continue to be personally responsible and follow the rules, whether that be around face masks in shops or very large gatherings. By following the rules we are all doing our bit to prevent the virus spreading.”

Current rules in place by the UK government place Portugal on the list of countries that require a person returning to the UK to quarantine (self-isolate) for 14 days upon arrival.

The UK government states that: “In England, if you do not self-isolate, you can be fined £1,000. If you do not provide an accurate contact detail declaration – or do not update your contact detail form in the limited circumstances where you need to move from the accommodation where you’re self-isolating to another place to continue self-isolating – you can be fined up to £3,200”.

Self isolation rules in the UK clearly state that a person should only use public transport to return to their home or residence if there is no other option and to avoid contact with other people when travelling home. Once at their home a person is required to stay in their place of residence for 14 days and to have food and other necessities delivered.

When in self isolation a person cannot have visitors to the home, cannot go to work, school or visit public areas. When quarantining a person cannot go shopping or pick up medication and exercise can only be taken in the garden of the home, including the walking of a pet. There are of course exceptions to all of the quarantining rules.

On average 16 flights from the UK are arriving each day into Faro airport, as travel to Portugal is not banned by but instead the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) currently advises British nationals against all but essential international travel.

The Portuguese government and authorities have criticised the decision of the UK government to maintain a quarantine period for those returning from Portugal while critics have stated that the self isolation policy is pointless, serving only to damage the ailing travel and tourism industries.

If you disagree with the decision of the UK Government to continue to leave Portugal off the air bridge list, then click here to find details on how to sign a petition and lobby UK ministers.

WHO and Worldometer Data for each country for confirmed cases per week.


Week ending 29/6/20 - 2380 cases

Week ending 6//7/20 - 2652 cases

Week ending 13/7/20 - 2169 cases

Week ending 20/7/20 - 760 cases

On 760 cases that is roughly 7.6 per 100,000 infection rate.

The Algarve is roughly 3 per 100,000 now.


Week ending 29/6/20 - 2589 cases

Week ending 6//7/20 - 4590 cases

Week ending 13/7/20 - 9016 cases

Week ending 20/7/20 - 8865 cases

On 8865 cases that is roughly 18.7 per 100,000 infection rate.


The ONS last figures for England is estimated at 2,800 new cases per day or 19,600 per week for the week ending 20/7/20 and also states that the current infection rate is 5.2 per 100,000.

As such the Algarve is less than England and the whole of Portugal is just above England with the most telling factor being that Spain is on and Portugal off even though Spain has a rising infection rate over the last three weeks and Portugal has declined.

As such Portugal is now 7.6 per 100,000 and Spain is 18.7 per 100,000 infection rate.


much safer here than UK.utter madness for people to self isolate o return.get a grip Boris.

By Michael grogan from Algarve on 28-07-2020 05:15

Eu não concordo que Portugal continue com quarenten quando regressando ao Reino Unido, pois nosso País tem os melhores medicos e enfermeiros, a maior parte deles ca no Reino Unolido são Portugueses.

By Maria Pinto from UK on 28-07-2020 04:12

Due to the incubation period being 14 days I think it is one more week before Portugal can go back on the air Bridge list. One sure thing Spain is back off the bridge list and definitely on the quarantine list.

By Neville Daniels from UK on 28-07-2020 09:36

This article sounds like the Portuguese are begging! Or even asking the Brits to ignose their own government's decisions. Don't do it. The special UK Portugal relationship is history. Grow up ...

By John Dough from Lisbon on 28-07-2020 08:06

I cannot understand this discussion. The Algarve is safer than the uk

By Jackie Parkin from UK on 28-07-2020 07:45

Who is Policing the UK?
I watched the funeral of Dame Vera Lynn on the news Hundreds of people were outside the church, non of whom were wearing face masks.
The UK Government is addressing this pandemic in the same way as Brexit
No leadership, no control, and no idea what to do next. Bring back a Maggie Thatcher. She made many mistakes
but she had the 'balls' to make the hard decisions and to stand by them.

By Annette Brown from Algarve on 27-07-2020 11:55
Interactive Topics, send us your comments/opinion on this article.

Please note that The Portugal News may use selected comments in the printed edition of the newspaper.