New Measures Introduced in Response to the Omicron Variant

The Prime Minister has introduced new temporary measures which came into effect on Tuesday 30 November, to slow the arrival and spread of the Omicron variant :

  • Face coverings are a legal requirement in shops and on public transport.
  • International arrivals from non-red list countries who are fully vaccinated will need to isolate at home and take a PCR test on or before day two following your arrival. You are only permitted to leave isolation if this test result is negative. If your test result is positive, you will need to isolate for 10 days.
  • If you have come into contact with an individual who may have been infected with the Omicron variant, you are legally required to self-isolate at home for 10 days. This applies even if you are fully vaccinated or aged 18 or under.
The Government will review these temporary measures in 3 weeks.

We know that people will be worried about new variants of Covid-19, but we can all take steps to keep ourselves and others safe.

We should continue to:

  • Let fresh plenty of air in if you meet indoors. Meeting outdoors is safer.
  • Keep washing your hands regularly and thoroughly
  • Wear a face covering where legally required, and in crowded/enclosed spaces where you come into contact with people you do not usually meet.
  • If you develop Covid-19 symptoms (even if they are mild), self-isolate immediately and get a free PCR test.
  • Rapid lateral flow testing continues to be available free of charge. You can get tests from pharmacies or online. Take a rapid test on days when you’re more likely to catch or spread Covid-19. Find out more about how to get rapid lateral flow tests.
  • Maximise your protection by getting vaccinated. If you’re eligible for a booster or flu vaccination, take up the offer. It’s not too late to get your first or second dose either. You can book your vaccine online or by calling 119.