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Arriving from US to Manchester, UK then needing to head directly to Wales

Having a hard time understanding regulations under the lockdown in England. Wondering if there is any advice as needing to travel from the US to Manchester, UK and then directly to Wales. Aware we would need to quarantine for 14 days upon the arrival and follow any guidelines in Wales. Wondering if possible to cross the border of England/Wales at this time and the best method to do so?

Thank you.

Posted by
5892 posts

According to the present guidelines travelling in and out of Wales is not allowed unless you have a “reasonable excuse”. Now define reasonable “reasonable excuse”?, The situation is as confusing as hell even for locals. My aunt lives on the border in Chester and “technically” hasn’t been allowed to visit her nearest supermarket. There certainly aren’t roadblocks on the streets but people, including a friend of my aunt, were stopped and fined by the police during the welsh lockdown.

To answer your question most accurately it would be helpful if you let us know when you are planning to travel and why you are planning to visit, the reason for travel does affect the guidance.

The news story about the Chester Football club toilets being in Wales caused much hilarity for Cestrians ( residents of Chester), the fact that half the pitch is in Wales is a matter of much longstanding shame!;-)

Posted by
1113 posts

Americans are allowed to fly into one European Country (meaning you can't hop scotch) and if permitted by that particular country and only if your Passport is good for at least 6 more months. Check with your airline to see if they have or know of a sequestered system for delivery of passengers to Wales. Check to see if private transportation would be permitted. You may have to register valid reasons ahead of time. Do you have dual citizenship? If you own property in Wales; that may work. Good Luck.

Posted by
3 posts

Thank you to all who have responded. Greatly appreciated!

Travel is at the end of the month. Heading over the see my partner's family member who is not well. My partner is from the UK. I am not and do not hold dual citizenship.

Posted by
5892 posts

This is where the definition of “reasonable excuse” becomes a bit murky.
“Caring responsibilities” are classed as a reasonable excuse to enter the country but does that cover visiting a sick relative? Are you allowed? You would not be visiting ‘your’ relative so maybe not? I honestly don’t know. Hopefully common sense would apply but during a lockdown what is ‘common sense’?, Allowing someone to provide support to their partner or limiting the risk of infection coming into the country, which takes precedence? I am sorry if this sounds harsh but so many people have been unable to be with their relatives when they have been ill and dying over the last 6 months, normal niceties do not apply.

You will need to provide the details of where you will be quarantining when you land in the U.K. You will not need to provide it again in Wales but the information will be passed on and people have been checked up on by the police during the 14day period. If you breech you will be fined and the quarantine restrictions are strict. Some communities in Wales, particularly in the tourist areas, have been very “sensitive” to visitors during lockdown so I would expect to be reported if you do break quarantine!
There is no hard border between England and Wales, but as I said the police have been doing some stops.

The best way to get from Manchester to your final destination in Wales does depend on where in Wales it is! The guidance is that you should avoid public transport so being collected at the airport is the best option, but use of public transport isn’t completely forbidden if that is all that you can do.

Posted by
520 posts

Not required, but a negative COVID test may be helpful to take with you. There are very strict rules in place in England and Wales during this 2nd lockdown. The border crossing may be a challenge and you could get more scrutiny than your partner. There are strict rules on families mixing and seeing family members in facilities/hospitals.

If you go, I would highly recommend you take out Travel insurance and read the fine print on COVID. If you get sick then accessing a GP will be complicated. You do not state your age or health -which are all factors in weighing up the risks of a visit. There are flights arriving into the UK daily from the US so evidently, there are people traveling. I am a US/UK passport holder and want to visit my family, but I know I must patiently wait until things improve over here and there.
Margaret

Posted by
5630 posts

Americans are allowed to fly into one European Country but only if your Passport is good for at least 6 more month

This is not currently true for France (and a whole lot of other places).

Americans are not allowed, under current (since mid-March) Covid restrictions, to enter into France for leisure travel.

Posted by
4022 posts

Not required, but a negative COVID test may be helpful to take with you.

A negative COVID test will be of no use as decisions affecting immigration or movements once in the UK are not made on the basis of a negative test result. My wife has a negative test result but she still has to abide by all the lockdown rules along with everybody else. It will not allow you entry into Wales based on the reasons provided.

Posted by
4068 posts

Sorry to sound harsh, but whilst your partner may or may not have a valid reason for travel, bluntly, you don’t. The lockdown in Wales has been more stringent than in England and you travelling in Wales wouldn’t meet their criteria. The situation can change and at short notice.

You would have to quarantine for 14 days, which means not even leaving the garden of wherever you are staying. You can’t stay with relatives unless they too self isolate for 14 days. You will need to get food delivered.

You need to avoid public transport if possible, so hiring a car would be the safest option. There is no physical border with England.

You are not permitted to visit hospitals or care homes, so you may want to question the wisdom of your trip at this particular time. The last thing you want is to put an ill person at risk.

Posted by
5892 posts

Jennifer makes some very good points. Regardless of whether you will be allowed in to the U.K. ( you probably will) you really need to weigh up what you will or will not be able to do when you are here. Quarantine requirements are strict and there is no flexibility.

If you are intending to quarantine with family members, ie not in a hotel or rented accommodation, the point about the requirement for the entire household to isolate is an important one. If the family member who is not well is in hospital or a care home anyone in the accommodation where you will be isolating will not be allowed to visit them, even if limited visiting rights are available.

A negative test result will make no difference to your ability to enter the country and definitely won’t negate the requirement to isolate.

There is definitely no ‘hard’ border between England and Wales. The border goes through peoples houses as well as football pitches! so no roadblocks etc. But the police are there. They will be using numberplate recognition technology to check cars that cross the border to see where they are registered. Any “irregularities” and it is certainly possible that they will be stopped and checked down the road. It’s not for nothing that North Wales Traffic Police used to be known ( not particularly affectionately) as the “Traffic Taliban”!

Posted by
23977 posts

It’s not for nothing that North Wales Traffic Police used to be known ( not particularly affectionately) as the “Traffic Taliban”!

They are also very very generous in dispensing traffic fines. Ask me how I know ;-)

Posted by
5892 posts

Yep, that’s one of the reasons for their nick name. Ruthless when it came to fines.:-)

Posted by
4022 posts

Why don't you call the closest British consulate to you and ask them. They would have the official answer.

No need to, the correct answer has been provided on several posts by residents of the UK who know the rules.

Posted by
5892 posts

The British Consulate would only direct you to the government websites. This is where the most up to date information is available, as unclear as that might be.

Posted by
3 posts

Thank you all for your thoughts and feedback, they are most helpful. Would not want to impact the health of a loved one, so would quarantine without extended family. Perhaps not possible for me to take this journey into Wales following quarantine. Maybe best to wait until the lockdown is over in England and see what rules/regulations ... sorry for so many thoughts and I appreciate any and all feedback provided. With thanks and deep appreciation.

Posted by
23977 posts

I am sure that this is very difficult for you.

If you, as you say, are coming to England this month, be aware that all of England is under a lockdown until into December and possible (probable) extension. Restaurants and bars and most shops and most attractions are closed. Tourism isn't allowed. Unnecessary travel is not permitted. That's for everybody, after the quarantine.

I'm just seeing on our local news that if lockdown is lifted we will likely return to the tiered system. Before the lockdown, the area in and around Manchester and the northwest and northeast and northern Midlands was in the highest tier and will almost certainly return to that or even more restricted.

I am sure that supporting your partner's family is very important, but at the moment England is no place to come to.

We don't know what Wales will do in the weeks after the fire-break...

Sorry