Scotland is to set up a government committee to examine how the airline sector is being hit by the pandemic as it introduces tough new hotel quarantine measures.
An aviation working group will be established “to address the issues the sector is facing”, the Scottish government confirmed.
The news comes as officials revealed details of compulsory quarantine for arrivals from outside Scotland’s Common Travel Area, which includes only the UK, Jersey, Guernsey, the Isle of Man and Ireland.
From 15 February, arrivals from outside the Common Travel Area must book and pay for managed isolation in six hotels close to Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow airports.
The properties have a combined capacity of 1,300 rooms and cost £1,750 per individual traveller.
The Scottish government said final costs for those not travelling alone “are currently being worked through”. A Managed Isolation Welfare Fund will be launched for those who cannot afford the charge.
All arrivals must quarantine for at least 10 days and will be tested twice for the virus – once on day two and once on day eight after arrival.
A small number of arrivals will not be required to isolate, such as those involved in essential supply chains for goods coming into Scotland, but existing travel exemptions will be strengthened, including limiting overseas training for elite sportspeople to athletes and coaches preparing for the Olympics and Paralympics.
In a statement to the Scottish parliament, transport secretary Michael Matheson urged the UK government to match the approach being taken by Scotland.
He said: “To manage the risk of importing new variants and to give vaccine deployment the best chance of bringing us closer to normality here in Scotland, we have to place further limits on international travel.
“The UK government has only committed to adopting this for travellers returning from ‘red list’ countries. However, we know that is not sufficient and we will go further.
“The clinical advice is clear that a comprehensive system of managed quarantine is essential to minimise the impact of new Covid-19 variants.”