As nations world wide have imposed bans on travellers coming to and from Britain, UK residents who went overseas over the Christmas break are grappling with the prospect of being stranded abroad.
‘The mixture of coronavirus, journey bans and Brexit is unmanageable’
Heather Alder, 23, lives in Edinburgh and travelled together with her fiance to Aarhus in Denmark final week to go to his father and take him for most cancers exams, which have since come again constructive.
The couple have been planning to fly again to the UK this week, however are actually caught in a distant farmhouse in Denmark. “Even when the journey ban is lifted in just a few days or perhaps weeks, we don’t know whether or not we will go away and we don’t know whether or not we will get again in simply,” she stated.
Alder began a brand new job within the UK final month, and is grateful that her boss has been accommodating. “My father-in-law’s home is about as distant as Denmark will get, so we’ve needed to set up new wifi so as to have the ability to work from right here.
“My boss has been fantastic about all of it, however my associate is finding out and dealing part-time for a Danish firm, however pays tax within the UK. If we get caught right here for longer, we would must report it, and he might find yourself having to pay tax in Denmark, the place revenue tax is at 48%. This may have a big effect on our funds. It’s very disturbing.”
With the Brexit date on 31 December looming, Alder is frantically attempting to determine whether or not she should apply for a visa if she has to remain in Denmark for some time.
“It’s very regarding that on high of every thing, I now have to type out my standing right here earlier than Brexit. As a result of Christmas closures, which means submitting documentation so I can apply as an EU citizen for the appropriate to remain by 23 December. No person appears to have a solution as to what Britons in Denmark ought to do within the new yr. Clearly all our paperwork are within the UK, the place we will’t return, which is making the entire course of maddening and intensely worrying.
“The mixture of Brexit and coronavirus has turned what was already a tough state of affairs into an unmanageable one.”
‘I can’t afford to overlook work’
Mery Shahin, 25, has been residing within the UK since 2014 and is doing a PhD at Imperial School London.
Final week, she flew to Bulgaria to go to her dad and mom, and has since been instructed that flights again to the UK might be banned till 31 January, leaving her in limbo.
“I got here to Bulgaria on 19 December and needed to remain only for eight days to see my household, as I hadn’t seen all of them yr and my grandma is kind of previous. Now I might find yourself caught right here till the top of January; I don’t know what to do.
“I’ve spoken to the Bulgarian international ministry, who simply stated they’ll’t assist me and wished me a superb day. I spoke to the British embassy in Bulgaria, who instructed me they’ll’t predict the long run and ended the cellphone name. I’m attempting to get in contact with the airways to see if they’ll reroute my flight so I can come again dwelling to the UK however the cellphone strains are, understandably, extremely busy.”
Shahin has settled standing within the UK, however is apprehensive that Brexit might trigger bother on the UK border if she tries getting into the nation in early January, ought to the ban be lifted by then.
“I’ve already missed three months of my PhD because of the first UK lockdown and I’m not getting an extension. If I’ve to remain in Bulgaria until February after which self-isolate once I lastly come again to the UK, that may be almost one other two months missed. I can’t afford to overlook that a lot work.”
‘I haven’t been again dwelling for the reason that summer time’
Ella Hillyard, a 23-year-old English trainer in Málaga, was planning on going dwelling to the UK on 24 December, however because of the new journey restrictions won’t be making it dwelling.
Having already missed out on household moments, notably her sister’s wedding ceremony, as a consequence of Covid, she now worries about when she is going to be capable to see her household once more.
“I used to be in full shock once I first heard concerning the restrictions,” stated Hillyard. “Only a few days earlier than, we have been speaking about how excited all of us have been about seeing one another. I haven’t been dwelling for the reason that summer time.”
As a result of Hillyard’s job, she must be again in Spain by 6 January, in time for faculties beginning, which solely provides to the journey drawback. If flights get cancelled and she or he finds herself caught within the UK, she dangers dropping her job.
“All the federal government tips say that when you do journey to the UK, it’s a must to be ready that you just might need to remain there longer, and I can’t do this,” she stated. “I don’t wish to lose my job as a result of that’s what provides me the appropriate to dwell in Spain.”