Despite the possibility of international travel resuming from May 17, the UK government has introduced new measures to limit the number of people embarking on unessential trips abroad while the travel ban remains in place.

From March 8 any passenger travelling to a destination outside of the UK, whether by train, plane, or boat, will be legally required to complete a ‘Declaration to Travel Form’ stating their reason for travel.

Transport operators will then be required to check whether the passenger’s reason for travel is valid and direct people home if their reasoning is not deemed essential.

Airline, train, and ferry companies will be faced with hefty fines if they are found to have let passengers leave the country without proof of a legitimate reason for travel. And passengers who arrive without the necessary evidence may face financial consequences too.

Anyone who must travel for a legally permitted reason should ensure they have adequate travel insurance in place before travelling. It may even be worth contacting the travel insurance provider before taking out the policy to discuss the situation and confirm cover before you set off – just to be on the safe side.

The reason we say this is because those who are caught travelling against the government’s advice without a valid reason to do so run the risk of not being covered if they need emergency medical attention while abroad, or if they submit a claim.

Furthermore, most travel insurance companies won’t cover any lost costs incurred as a result of being turned away by the airline, train, or ferry company if they do not deem the reason for travel as essential.

For more information on what the government defines as ‘essential’ travel, click here.