New COVID-19 restrictions launch this week in the UK

Dec 13, 2021

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

This story has been updated with new information.

New restrictions on social distancing began Monday in the U.K., including government advice to work from home if possible for the foreseeable future.

In other changes this week, from Dec. 14, anyone identified as coming into close contact of a positive case will need to take a free NHS lateral flow test each day for seven days, rather than self-isolating. Positive cases must still isolate and unvaccinated adults must self-isolate for 10 days.

Additionally, face masks and COVID-19 passes will now be required to enter certain mass venues in the United Kingdom, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced as part of the country’s “Plan B” response to the omicron variant. The variant is now spreading quickly through the country, with the first death recorded. It is expected to be the dominant variant in the U.K. within days.

For more TPG news delivered each morning to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

From Dec. 15, NHS Covid Pass will be mandatory to access nightclubs and other venues with large crowds, including indoor venues with 500 or more people, outdoor spaces with 4,000-plus individuals, and any venue with attendance exceeding 10,000 people, to allow these spaces to remain open without reducing capacity. The news will add another layer of protocol for any travelers visiting the U.K. through the Christmas period, as well as U.K. residents.

Although those who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 are able to obtain the Covid Pass initially, it’s likely that the validity of the pass will hinge on the addition of subsequent COVID-19 boosters in the near future. All adults will now be offered a booster jab by the end of December, rather than the end of January as originally planned.

“The NHS Covid Pass can still be obtained with two doses but we will keep this under review as the boosters roll out,” the Prime Minister said.

Additionally, face masks are to be worn at most public indoor spaces, including venues, theaters, and cinemas.

Work from home measures have also been reintroduced to facilitate remote work wherever possible moving forward. Businesses will have until today (Dec. 13) to make arrangements. The new rules create the unusual situation where the public can attend Christmas parties with their colleagues, provided they don’t go into a workplace with them.

“Employers should use the rest of this week to discuss working arrangements with their employees,” he said in a press conference on Dec. 8. “But from Monday [13 December] you should work from home if you can. Go to work if you must but work from home if you can.”

Additional reporting by Ben Smithson.

Featured photo by Adrian Dennis-WPA Pool/Getty Images.

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer ends 8/3/2022.

With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer ends 8/3/2022.
  • Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs up to two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide including takeout and delivery in the U.S., and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $80 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck® after you apply through any Authorized Enrollment Provider. If approved for Global Entry, at no additional charge, you will receive access to TSA PreCheck.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Regular APR
17.24%-26.24% Variable
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
Recommended Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.