Prime Minister Boris Johnson is expected to announce new quarantine rules following concerns about new strains of the coronavirus.
In recent weeks, ministers had been under pressure to tighten restrictions on the UK borders, with Labour accusing them of “dragging their feet”. A Covid-O meeting will be conducted where Mr Johnson and the cabinet ministers will finalise the proposals on quarantine rules.
Those with permanent residency rights and UK citizens arriving from “hotspot” countries such as South Africa and parts of South America as well as Portugal, because many flights from Brazil come via Lisbon, will most likely be affected by the measures.
Government sources said the proposed hotel quarantine may take “weeks rather than days” to implement.
In what Downing Street said was a more cautious approach since England’s third lockdown, a No 10 source said: “We don’t ever want to unlock anything if we have to lock it again.”
Under the new quarantine plans, travellers arriving in the country will be required to isolate in a hotel for ten days.
On Monday, Matt Hancock said it was “incredibly important that we are cautious at the border … It is important that we protect from new variants should they have vaccine evasion. And it is also reasonable to take a precautionary principle to protect this country whilst we work on the science and the analysis of the different variants that are discovered around the world”.