Passengers flying from Heathrow to Italy and Hong Kong will have priority in choosing the option of paying for a rapid coronavirus test before checking in.
The test costs £80 and is available now. It is called a Lamp test which includes a rapid saliva swab and passengers will receive the results within one hour. Airlines include British Airways, Cathay Pacific and Virgin Atlantic are now offering it to their customers. However, this new testing facility is not for the passengers flying into the airport.
Tim Alderslade, chief executive of the aviation trade body Airlines UK, said: “For business passengers £80 is probably quite competitive but we’ve certainly said to the government in terms of introducing a test on arrival in the UK anything from £50-£60 would be better.”
This is aimed to help passengers who needs a proof of a negative result upon arrival at their destination. The reason for this is that countries have now classified the UK as being a “high risk” location, meaning travellers will face more restrictions.
Collinson is the company behind the coronavirus testing initiative in Heathrow.
David Evans, chief executive of Collinson, stated that passengers will only have to turn up at the airport an hour earlier and getting test would give people confidence to travel.
Hong Kong and the Italian authorities now require people travelling from the UK to show proof that their test came back negative and that it was taken within 72 hours. Collinson hopes that testing will open up more routes between other countries and the UK.
The government is currently looking at another system for people to take the test two or three days earlier before they fly into the UK in order to avoid quarantine. The test is now available at Heathrow Terminals 2 and 5.
Photo by Alex Takil on unsplash
News credit: BBC