London Stansted Airport unveils new Covid-19 testing facility

London Stansted Airport has said that it has launched a new Covid-19 testing facility, as part of a move by its parent company, Manchester Airports Group (MAG).

Accordingly, a full range of tests – RT-PCR, RT-LAMP, Rapid Antigen and Antibody – will be available to all passengers in a new facility inside the main terminal building. They will be delivered in partnership with airport services and travel medical provider, Collinson.

MAG, the UK’s largest airport group, also became the first operator to give its passengers the chance to book discounted pre-flight testing appointments on the high street at selected Boots UK stores.

Boots offers an in-store RT-PCR Covid-19 testing service, which returns results within 48 hours from more than 50 stores across the UK, specifically for customers who do not suspect they have Covid-19. MAG passengers will be able to access a five percent discount through the airport’s website. Airport testing prices through Collinson start at £40 for Antibody tests, £50 for Antigen tests, £79 for RT-LAMP tests and £99 for RT-PCR tests.

Steve Griffiths, Managing Director, London Stansted, said, ‘As England emerges from a ban on international travel, we know our passengers are keen to start flying again, but many of Stansted’s most popular destinations require a negative test before you arrive in the country.

This new facility will make the process of showing you’re infection-free when booking a holiday as easy and cost-effective as possible in the current circumstances. Our new booking portal makes it easy to select the right test for your destination, and at the location that is most convenient for you.

This also means Stansted is perfectly placed to support the introduction of a UK arrivals testing regime, which will enable travellers to reduce the length of time they need to self-isolate if they test negative.

Subject to the relevant tests securing government approval, this could free people from quarantine after just five days. This is the latest example of MAG leading the way as we look to work with Government and the rest of our industry to get Britain flying again.’

While some governments allow pre-departure tests in order to shorten or completely alleviate quarantine requirements in the destination country, others require them in order to gain entry. Passengers will also be able to book the tests they need to shorten their self-isolation period upon return under the UK Government’s ‘Test to Release’ scheme. The scheme, announced last week, will launch on December 15 and allow travellers arriving from higher risk countries to reduce their period of quarantine by taking a test five days after they arrive in the UK.

MAG’s testing services are the first to be offered by an airport group at multiple locations across the country. The service will cater for both outbound and inbound testing, and adapt as Government travel requirements change.

Glasgow Airport offers car park to host Covid-19 testing facility

As part of supporting the government’s response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, Glasgow Airport’s Long-stay Car Park has been transformed into a drive-thru mobile testing facility for front line NHS staff.

The Glasgow Airport-based facility is being introduced to test frontline NHS staff only at this stage. The 17-acre car park site is located on Abbotsinch Road, and became operational as a facility on Sunday April 5. The new testing centre will have up to five lanes and provide capacity for a greater number of COVID-19 tests each day. It will operate between 10am and 4:30pm from today.

Mark Johnston, Glasgow Airport’s managing director, said: ‘We are in regular contact with both the UK and Scottish Governments and have offered our facilities available to support the response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

‘Glasgow Airport has the space and infrastructure capable of accommodating a large-scale testing area and we are only too happy to support in this way. The impact of this virus affects us all and Glasgow Airport, the wider AGS Airports Ltd group and our people will continue to support the national effort to overcome COVID-19 and stand ready to help in any way we can.’

Alister Jack, Secretary of State for Scotland said: ‘This new testing centre at Glasgow Airport, funded by the UK Government, will keep our frontline NHS staff doing the jobs they are trained to do. Allowing those who do not have the disease to go back to work and treat those who are most in need of care.

‘This is part of the UK government’s plan to vastly expand our testing capacity as we continue to work around the clock and across the country to protect the vulnerable, support the NHS, and save lives.’

Last week, Glasgow and the wider AGS Airports Ltd group donated GBP40,000 to homeless charity Simon Community Scotland’s #GiveHope appeal. The funding will support the purchase of hotel accommodation for people who are homeless, allowing them to self-isolate if necessary whilst accessing services offered by the Simon Community.