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December 4, 2020updated 07 Dec 2020 6:25am

MAG launches Covid-19 testing scheme at three UK airports

Manchester Airports Group (MAG) has launched Covid-19 testing centres at Manchester, London Stansted and East Midlands airports in the UK.

Manchester Airports Group (MAG) has launched Covid-19 testing centres at Manchester, London Stansted and East Midlands airports in the UK.

A full range of tests, including RT-PCR, RT-LAMP, Rapid Antigen and Antibody, will be available to all passengers from one location within the airports.

The testing services will be provided in partnership with Collinson, an airport services and travel medical provider.

MAG claimed that it became the first operator to enable booking of discounted pre-flight testing appointments to its customers at select Boots UK stores.

Airport testing fees through Collinson begin at £40 for Antibody tests, £50 for Antigen tests, £79 for RT-LAMP tests and £99 for RT-PCR tests.

Collinson joint CEO David Evans said: “In order to restore confidence in travel, it is critical that travellers can navigate the many different testing regimes now required by different governments around the world.

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“We were the first company to set up Covid testing facilities at a UK airport and our partnership with MAG will bring comprehensive testing facilities to Manchester, London Stansted and East Midlands airports. This is a major step forward in opening up the UK to safe travel.

“Our new facilities will also support the UK Government’s ‘Test To Release’ programme, scheduled for launch on 15 December, and are flexible enough to respond to any changing requirements or legislation from both a pre-departure and inbound testing perspective.

“Having a breadth of testing capability and the flexibility to scale is critical to ensuring the aviation and travel sector can recover from this pandemic, helping to protect jobs and restore consumer confidence.”

MAG CEO Charlie Cornish said: “With many countries now welcoming visitors who can show they are infection-free, we wanted to make the process of planning a holiday or business trip as easy and cost-effective as possible in the current circumstances.

“That is why we have created a booking option on our website, which enables you to select the right test for the right destination, and at the location that is most convenient for you, either at one of our airports or on the high street.”

In a separate development, Heathrow Airport announced that it is considering a proposal to implement a Forecourt Access Charge (FAC) for vehicles late next year.

The airport is planning to levy a £5 charge on drivers to drop-off passengers outside its terminals.

FAC will apply to all vehicles entering the forecourts of Heathrow’s terminals, with some exceptions for blue badge holders and emergency vehicles.

The full list of exemptions has not yet been finalised.

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