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UK-Belgium travel: Residents can return home on Wednesday, other trips banned until 1 January
Belgium has extended its blanket ban on UK passenger travel by a further 24 hours - but will allow people to return to their country of residence from Wednesday (23 December).
The total ban on flights, trains and boat services between Belgium and the UK came into force at midnight on Monday morning, after Britain reported growing cases of a more contagious strain of coronavirus.
The measure initially applied for 24 hours, to give Belgium time to consult with other EU member states on a more coordinated approach. It has now been extended, with no UK passenger travel possible on Tuesday 22 December, although freight will be allowed.
A Belgian ministerial decree will make it possible for people to return from the UK to Belgium (or in the other direction) from Wednesday, but only if travelling to your primary place of residence.
Other travel, for example visiting friends or relatives in a country where you are not resident, will remain banned until the end of the month. It will be allowed from 1 January, with proof of a negative Covid-19 test no more than 48 hours old.
Border guards will check that passengers have completed the Passenger Locator Form and that they will quarantine for seven days on arrival.
Passengers from the UK can pass through a Belgian airport on to a connecting flight from Wednesday, but only towards non-EU destinations.
Meanwhile, Bpost says anyone who needs to send a parcel from Belgium to the United Kingdom should use the "express" option, via air mail.
The standard option has been withdrawn until France allows goods transport to the UK again. Letters and greetings cards can still be sent to Britain, but they risk being delayed.