The UK government have issued a warning for travellers this week as a Border Force strike is scheduled to go ahead in March, potentially extending wait times at border control for the duration of the strike action.
According to the statement released, all travellers arriving in the UK on the 15th of March should expect some longer wait times at border control due to the strike action Border Force has planned for that day. The strike action includes not only Border Force officials, but other members of the Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union, who have planned a walkout on the 15th of March. This strike action is expected to also have an effect on the early hours of the 16th of March until around 7 am.
The PCS union announced this as Civil Service industrial action which will affect all Border Force operations on the day. This means it will affect international arrives at the UK via air and maritime ports. This will also affect any travellers to the UK that are coming through the Border Force from Calais, Dunkirk, and Coquelles in the north of France.
The government has recommended to travellers that are arriving during this time to “be prepared for longer wait times” alongside encouraging all travellers to the UK that are eligible for use of the eGates to use them if they are available at their time of passage.
The statement from the government said, “We advise travellers to check with travel agents, tour operators, and airlines or carriers before travelling, to check if the proposed strike action will affect your journey. Passengers can also check airport websites before travelling to stay up to date with the latest information related to travel or possible delays caused by strike action.”
In the event of strike action within the Border Force such as this, military personnel, civil servants, and volunteers from across the government have been trained to support the work of the Border Force at airports and ship ports.
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