Private providers and universities across the United Kingdom have voiced concerns that quarantine hotels will be insufficient to accommodate students from UK’s red-list countries and called for alternative quarantine arrangements for the arriving students.
According to the UK government’s website, the rate for one adult in one room for a period of ten days and 11 nights is 1,750 pounds, while travelers must book a managed quarantine hotel within a 14-day period before they arrive in England, Erudera.com reports.
University Living founder Saurabh Arora said that purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) wants to quarantine students coming from red-list countries.
“Many of our accommodation partners, especially in the UK and Australia, have gone on record and stated that they have the capacity to do so,” Arora told The PIE News.
According to him, several UK universities and PBSA representatives pointed out they have informed authorities that they are willing to quarantine international students at their accommodations, respecting the government’s protocols.
At the same time, the managing director of development for the UK and Europe at Study Group, James Pitman, said that the UK could see around 50,000 students from India, which is a red-list country at the moment. According to Pitman, if India remains on UK’s red list, quarantine hotels will be insufficient for students, whereas the costs could also become a huge obstacle.
However, a department of health and social care spokesperson said that besides thousands of hotel rooms that can be used to further meet the demand, the government also has ongoing deals with a number of hotels moving into the summer. The spokesperson did not provide the exact figures on capacity.
In May this year, it was reported that the UK student accommodation Unite Students got permission to start building the 700-bed student accommodation facility at Derby Road in Nottingham, next to the University of Nottingham campus. Unite Students said that the total investment could reach £57 million while the building will be all set in the 2023/2024 academic year.
Convinced that international students will return to the United Kingdom, one of the largest pension funds in the world, the major Dutch pension investor APG said it would invest hundreds of millions of pounds in UK college accommodation.
Whereas a recent report by the National Centre for Entrepreneurship in Education (NCEE) published by Universities UK has projected that university partnerships could help the UK recover from the pandemic as thousands of jobs and businesses could be created through university partnerships with employers, local government, and other partners.