Business travel returns into Guernsey with ‘business tunnels’

21 July 2020

Business travellers are allowed to come to Guernsey on a single-day return without the requirement to quarantine from next week.  

From Tuesday 28 July, so-called ‘business tunnels’ will allow individuals to come to Guernsey for meetings for one day only. Day return flights will operate twice a week.  

Guernsey’s financial services sector has remained fully operational since lockdown was imposed in March, and many companies have now returned to their offices after the island entered phase five of its Covid recovery plan in June.

There are a number of requirements that travellers must meet before making a business day trip to Guernsey. They should apply for permission to fly at least seven days before the date of travel; and on arrival, visitors can only go to designated locations, wear a mask, must maintain social distancing, not shake hands, and keep records of who they came into contact with.  

Deputy Gavin St Pier, Chair of the States of Guernsey’s Civil Contingencies Authority, said the exemption to quarantine was part of a careful and considered approach to moving to the final phase of the recovery, which includes reopening borders.  

“It’s important to us that any lifting of restrictions on travel is safe, so that we don’t find ourselves needing to lockdown our local community which would have a big impact on the economy, but also on each of us as individuals.  

“But we know the restrictions for travel create some very significant challenges, and we’ve sought to find temporary solutions for those.  

“Business tunnels are an example of that, and will mean for those meetings that absolutely have to be done in person, there is a way of accommodating them without putting the health of our community at significant risk.”  

The Guernsey International Business Association (GIBA) and Rupert Pleasant, Chief Executive of Guernsey Finance, have both welcomed the business tunnels concept.  

“Guernsey firms have been able to maintain exceptional links and quality of service for clients over the past four months and continue to do so,” said Mr Pleasant. “At some point we will need to open up our borders again and ‘business tunnels’ is a positive step which recognises the importance of business contacts and still seeks to maintain the current high quality of life the local community is enjoying, while being Covid-free.” 

For normal travellers the 14-day quarantine remains until September at least.

“Guernsey firms have been able to maintain exceptional links and quality of service for clients over the past four months and continue to do so. At some point we will need to open up our borders again and ‘business tunnels’ is a positive step which recognises the importance of business contacts and still seeks to maintain the current high quality of life the local community is enjoying, while being Covid-free.” 
Guernsey Finance Chief Executive Rupert Pleasant
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