BRITISH influencers in Dubai have taunted the travel ban that means they can no longer fly home saying: “Oh what a shame.”
Many downed shots and lounged by the pool today as strict new Covid travel rules came into force.
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Brit social media stars have faced a backlash for jetting to the sunny holiday spot during the UK’s lockdown and now face being stranded after travel rules were changed at 1pm.
Henry Simmons shared the view from his balcony overlooking a glistening pool before posting The Sun’s story about influencers being stranded.
The Absolutely Ascot reality star, 21, told his 108,000 followers: “Oh what a shame 🤣😂.
It was a view echoed by OnlyFans model Honey Evans, who said she would not be returning to the UK before the deadline.
She tweeted: “Flights from Dubai to the UK are banned. Guess i have no choice but to stay out here. Shame.”
The UAE has been added to a ‘red list’ of countries where travel to the UK is banned.
This means all direct flights from the UAE to Britain have been suspended in a bid to stop the new South African variant of Covid-19.
People who choose to fly home from Dubai using indirect flights will be forced to self-isolate at home for 10 days.
But the rule changes did not appear to bother the numerous British models, reality stars and social media influencers already holidaying in the UAE.
Mia Sully from Absolutely Ascot and TOWIE star Yazmin Oukhellou have been snapped taking shots beside a plush Dubai pool today – seemingly untroubled by news of the ban.
Despite the pictures, Oukhellou previously claimed she was flying to the country for work, saying: “I know a lot of people are getting a lot of stick for travelling out here at the moment, but we have come out here to work”.
More Brits staying put are Amy Willerton, former Miss Universe contestant, and her sister Erin, who were both pictured enjoying pizza poolside at a Dubai hotel.
Former Corrie actress Ariana Ajtar posted an array of racy images from her Dubai hotel on Instagram this morning telling her followers about her new yoga regime.
She also posted a video dedicated to her “beautiful bestie Mitchell, who she claimed was “all [she’s] wanting to come home for right now”.
Love Island’s Anton Danyluk, 26, also posted photos from the gym at his UAE hotel on social media this morning.
Earlier this month he defended his Dubai trip telling fans he’s working on business opportunities and “not taking the p***”.
Meanwhile, Makeup artist Amy Wilson, from Sheffield, was among the Brits scrambling onto the last flights out of the UAE before the new measures come into effect.
She tweeted to express how “lucky” she felt that she and her partner had been with finding flights.
“Got back from Turkey two hours before the quarantine deadline and getting the last flight home from Dubai before the UK closes its borders to the UAE. Someone’s looking out for me,” she wrote.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps announced yesterday that the UAE had been added to the UK’s ‘red list’ of countries subject to a travel ban.
The ‘red list’ was introduced in an attempt to prevent the spread of new Covid-19 variants from Brazil and South Africa, the latter of which is believed to have been detected in the UAE.
Thousands of Brits jetted back from Dubai on Friday to beat a 1pm travel ban.
Holidaymakers packed three flights from the city in the United Arab Emirates and two more from Abu Dhabi, its capital.
Social media influencer Klaudia Zakrzewska, 27, who arrived at Heathrow’s Terminal 2 in a pink bodysuit, said: “We were suddenly told all flights were stopping at 1pm.
“People were packing in the hotel corridor and fighting for the last spots at the airport.”
Emma Rhodes, 21, flew into Birmingham after a two-week break.
She said: “I agree with what the government’s done. But I understand why people chose to go (abroad) as well.”
Brits – including any Instagram stars out in Dubai – will only be able to make their trips back via third countries.
Dubai International Airport last night confirmed that anyone with flights booked after 1pm should not turn up to the airport and must contact their airline for further information.
Anyone returning from the UAE after that point will be ordered to self-isolate at home for 10 days.
The ban also includes all of South America, Panama, swathes of Southern Africa as well as Portugal.
What are the new travel rules?
What countries are on the ‘red list’?
Brits, Irish and people with UK residency returning from or transiting through the following countries will have to self-isolate for 10 days: Angola, Argentina, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Burundi, Cape Verde, Chile, Colombia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ecuador, Eswatini, French Guiana, Guyana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Portugal, Rwanda, Seychelles, South Africa, Suriname, Tanzania, UAE, Uruguay, Venezuela, Zambia, ZimbabweForeigners will not be allowed to enter the UK if they have travelled through the above countries.
Why is the UAE on the red list?
Evidence shows that the more infectious South African Covid strain is being spread in the UAE.
What does it mean for flights?
All direct flights to the UK from red list countries will be cancelled, with all flights from UAE cancelled from 1pm on Friday, January 29. People in these countries can still travel to the UK if they transit through a third country that’s not on the list.
Are there any loopholes?
Travellers from red list countries can enter the UK and not self-isolate if they have been in a third nation for more than 10 days. So theoretically a non-UK resident could fly from the UAE to France, stay there for 10 days, and then enter the UK.
Do I have to self-isolate for the full 10 days?
Yes, people self-isolating on return from these countries cannot use the Test and Release scheme to lower their quarantine to five days.
Do I have to stay in a hotel?
No… not for now. The hotel quarantine scheme has not started yet so Brits returning from red list nations will self-isolate at home. Hotel quarantine is expected to start from around February 8, after which point returning travellers will have to pay to stay in government-provided accomodation. It could cost more than £1,000 per person.
Do I still need to test negative to enter the UK?
Yes. Returning travellers must provide proof of a negative Covid test result within three days of starting their journey. If they don’t, they will be fined £500. People with negative Covid tests still have to self-isolate for 10 days.
People who do not follow orders to self-isolate can be fined up to £1,000 with repeat offenders fined up to £10,000.
Can I still leave the UK?
Yes, but only with good reason. Home Secretary Priti Patel said Brits will soon have to declare why they are going abroad, such as for business. Holidays will not be seen as a valid excuse.
Brits returning from red list countries will soon be made to stay in a basic Covid quarantine hotel, however the program isn’t up and running yet.
When the quarantine hotel restrictions are in place – expected to be from February 8 – travellers from the countries on the high-risk list must pay to self-isolate at a government-approved hotel for 10 days.
They won’t be allowed to use the ‘Test to Release’ scheme, which allows anyone who tests negative for Covid to end quarantine after five days.
It could spark a scramble for flights as Brits rush to get home.
Influencers bragging of sunshine breaks during the pandemic were slammed by Home Secretary Priti Patel this week.
She said: “People should simply not be travelling.
“We see plenty of influencers showing off where they are – mainly sunny places.”
Stars who did venture out to the UAE defended their trips with many insisting they were for work.
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And Laura Anderson, 31, who starred in The Only Way is Essex, moaned it’s “really hard” to be an influencer after a Dubai trip.
The 2018 contestant, who is now back in the UK, said the visit was a “coping mechanism” to deal with Covid.