As foreigners in Japan become increasingly desperate to flee the country, the British government has chartered planes to fly Britons in the country from Tokyo to Hong Kong.
The UK government is chartering flights from Tokyo to Hong Kong to supplement commercially available options for those wishing to leave Japan,” said a spokesman for the Foreign Office.
Commercial flights continue to operate to and from Japan. British nationals with commercial flight bookings should continue to use these flights and you should continue to make reservations and other arrangements with your airline as usual. If you wish to leave and cannot secure tickets for a commercial flight, you can register your interest in using our charter option to leave Japan.
The UK Foreign Office stated that there would be no charge for UK nationals in Japan who are directly affected by the tsunami. However, the Foreign Office added that people’s principal option should be commercial flights.
The Foreign Office also continued to advise against all non-essential travel to Tokyo and north-eastern Japan. It also suggested that all British citizens currently in Tokyo should consider leaving the area.
Due to the evolving situation at the Fukushima nuclear facility and potential disruptions to the supply of goods, transport, communications, power and other infrastructure, British nationals in Tokyo and to the north of Tokyo should consider leaving the area, a UK government spokesman stated.
Transport arrangements are being made and we will update people on our website when we have more information.
Marc Kemp, an Englishman who works as a teacher in the Fukushima, the epicenter of the growing nuclear crisis, told BBC how the fuel and food shortages have impacted his decision-making
It's really forced us to re-evaluate how we would do these things, and last night we all sat down and worked out the logistics,” he said.
We do have a plan in mind, we know where we would go, where we know we have enough fuel, food and water to get where we would want to go.
The British embassy in Tokyo has also arranged for buses to take Britons from Sendai, in the quake-damaged northeast part of Japan, to Tokyo.
Britain follows other nations, including France, Turkey and China, which have already advised its nations to leave Japan.
It is believed that there were about 17,000 UK nationals living in Japan just before the earthquake-tsunami struck last week. Thus far, there’ve been no reports of fatalities amongst them.