Barbara travelled to the UK from Brazil, quarantining in a government hotel before taking up her new role as a Meat Hygiene Inspector (MHI) with Eville & Jones during the Covid-19 pandemic.


How was the journey from the Brazil to the UK?

I was actually surprised how easy it was, especially given that Brazil is currently on the UK travel Red List. I ended up flying from Sau Paulo to Lisbon and then catching a connecting flight to London Heathrow as my original direct flight was cancelled. Obviously we had to wear facemasks and adhere to the usual social distancing rules but otherwise it wasn’t too dissimilar to travel in ‘normal’ times. The transition through Lisbon was also easy as I had connected flights and did not have to check-in or produce too much paperwork. In total I was travelling for 11 hours which is only a couple of hours longer than a direct flight.


What happened on arrival in the UK?

On arrival at Heathrow passengers arriving from Red List countries are directed through a separate line at Border Control. The border checks themselves were pretty simple and I had been well prepared by Eville & Jones prior to travelling, so I knew what to expect and had all documents ready. Once the checks were complete we were escorted to collect our baggage and the onto a waiting coach which took people to the various designated quarantine hotels. Check in was very well organised with plenty of staff available to help and escort us to our rooms.


What was the hotel quarantine experience like?

I did wonder what the hotel would be like given I would be confined to my room for 10 days. As it turned out I shouldn’t have worried. The hotel and the staff were really nice, and we were well looked after. I was even pleasantly surprised by the food. There was plenty of choice and it was well prepared. I can’t’ say there weren’t some periods when I was bored but I found I settled into a routine aided greatly by Netflix and books to read. The WIFI was good so I was able to stay in touch with my family and friends. If people did need to leave their rooms for any reason or needed room service there were always plenty of staff on hand. I had to take COVID tests on day 2 and 8 but again these were brought to my room and I simply entered the results online.


What would you say to vets who are worried about taking up career opportunities in the UK due the pandemic?

Firstly, I would say don’t be worried as the benefits certainly outweigh any inconvenience and its not difficult when you have support like I did. I actually saw it as a bit of an adventure before starting my new life and career here in the UK. Everything was made as easy as possible, and I have to say the organisation in the UK was fantastic. The team at Eville & Jones, led by Eliza, were also great in ensuring I was prepared and had all the documentation and information that I needed. They also gave me peace of mind that once the travel and quarantine was over they would continue to support with my transition to living and working here. Personally, I am so glad I decided to make the move.


Future applicants can be assured, that…

Our in house recruitment team have worked tirelessly to overcome the many challenges that COVID and Brexit has caused to our international recruitment pipeline.

Every new employee is fully supported through all the stages of their recruitment and comprehensive onboarding process which includes relocation advice, a detailed company induction and personal career development plan.

Barbara MHI