London mum cancels Christmas for her kids after £4k Gatwick quarantine hotel

A mum has had to cancel Christmas because of quarantine hotel (Megan Pearson)

A mum complained she’s told her kids Christmas is cancelled after spending nearly £4,000 on a Gatwick quarantine hotel stay.

Megan Pearson, 53, from Sutton, spent £3,715 to stay with her husband for ten nights at the Gatwick Sofitel hotel.

They had been visiting family in South Africa when the country was placed on the red list amid the spread of the Omicron variant.

The exercise area (Megan Pearson)

Now the doggy day care manager has lamented that she has had to cancel Christmas in her family home because they have spent too much money on hotel quarantine.

“It’s a farce and at the cost of £3,715. I’ve had to tell my kids that Christmas is cancelled. We have spent too much money.” She said.

“I can’t believe I’m being held against my will for ten days in my own country at an exorbitant cost.”

They went straight into quarantine with only a view of the north Terminal car park after arriving in the UK from Johannesburg.

Chilli Con Carne served at the five star hotel (Megan Pearson)

Ms Pearson moaned the food wasn’t what she expected for nearly four thousand pounds but she admitted it was “edible”.

She said: “A very good friend of ours has been our saviour; she has brought milk, cereal and fruit down to us.

“The food is not what you would expect for nearly four grand but the dinners have been edible, we’ve had salmon. It’s not inedible like I have seen in other hotels but ask us again in a couple of days.”

Every day in quarantine, Ms Pearson said the couple have been eagerly awaiting their 15 minute break outside.

She said: “You have to do it, you need the change of scenery. The cold and rain doesn’t deter me at all just to walk back and forth because the room is only ten paces. They are very strict on timings.”

Accor. who run Sofitel hotels, have been approached for comment.

It comes after other travellers complained about being stuck abroad and staying in quarantine hotels.

Over the weekend, Richard E Grant has said he felt “punished” and moaned about the food after being stuck in a quarantine hotel charging £228 per night.

Sajid Javid has said he expects the number of hotel rooms available for international quarantine will be doubled this week.

The Health Secretary said: “I know that there has been a spike in demand for these facilities due to the rapid expansion of the red list and that some people have experienced issues returning home.

“However, we are ramping up this capacity as quickly as possible. We’ve already brought several new hotels on board in the past few days and we expect to double the number of rooms that are available this week.”

Addressing the case for adding Nigeria to the travel red list at 4am on Monday, he said: “Analysis from UKHSA (Health Security Agency) shows that at least 21 Omicron cases in England alone are linked to travel from Nigeria, and there’s a strong indication that Omicron is present there. Nigeria also has very strong travel links with South Africa.

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