The Foreign Office has warned against all but essential travel to the US. The move comes hours after Washington said a ban on flights from the UK would be introduced because of Britain’s coronavirus outbreak.
A Foreign Office spokesperson said: We are advising against all but essential travel to the USA following the US government announcement imposing restrictions on travel from the UK…
The announcement was made shortly before Britons become subject to America’s ban on travellers from European countries.
Britain joins the list at 4am GMT on Tuesday 17 March. Acting homeland security secretary Chad Wolf said the ban had been extended because of the growing outbreak in the UK, where 21 people have died.
Downing Street said on Saturday night that Boris Johnson had spoken to Mr Trump but did not confirm if they had discussed the ban.
America’s 30-day suspension on flights from mainland Europe started on Friday – but the UK and Ireland were not included.
President Trump said the UK was doing a good job on the outbreak. The ban has been criticised by the European Union, which said it was a unilateral decision taken without consultation.
Ryanair Group Airlines (including Buzz and Lauda) has been forced to severely reduce flights to/from Spain, the Balearic Islands and Canary Islands from 24:00 Sun 15 Mar until 24:00 Thurs 19 Mar, said a statement.
The chairman of Virgin Airlines is also set to tell Boris Johnson the UK airline industry needs billions to avert a catastrophe.
Meanwhile, the coronavirus continues to cause havoc for international travel and the world’s airlines. Ryanair has announced major cuts to its Spanish flights because of the lockdown in the country.