Ferries from England to Hoek van Holland and Europoort will not carry passengers until 1 January. The Mayor of Rotterdam Ahmed Abu Talib made this decision on Sunday evening at the request of Minister Van Neuenhuisen (Infrastructure and Water Management). Shipping companies are still allowed to take the ferry. Since the Canal Tunnel was also closed shortly thereafter, it is virtually impossible to travel from the UK to the European mainland.
With this measure, the government wants to limit travel movements from the UK, where an infectious type of coronavirus has emerged. This concerns all Dutch ports with ferry services from the UK: as well as Hoek van Holland, as well as Europoort and IJmuiden.
On Sunday morning, air traffic from across the UK came to a standstill for the first time until 1 January. During the evening, a ban is imposed on entering the UK by ferry. Shortly thereafter, France decided to close the canal tunnel for at least 48 hours, thus closing the last artery with the mainland.
The mayors of Rotterdam and Velsen (including the port of IJmuiden) have taken advantage of regional port regulations to suspend ferries, allowing port masters to prevent ships from reaching the ports in whole or in part.
StenaLine in Harwich had planned to leave Hoek van Holland on Sunday 23:00. StenaLine announced on Sunday afternoon that it has been fully booked. That ferry was sailing, but it wouldn’t take special passengers.
Trucks and their drivers have been allowed on board, as the travel restrictions do not apply to the transportation of goods.
As a result of this measure, many Dutch people are now detained in the UK. They advise to find accommodation there.