Britons in parts of China affected by the new coronavirus have criticised the lack of government support for returning home.
UK citizens in Wuhan and surrounding areas said that while other countries prepared evacuations, they had been been given little information.
The US and Japan are sending planes to Wuhan to evacuate their citizens.
Asked about repatriation plans, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps told the BBC: “We are working on it.”
Up to 300 British people are thought to be trapped in the city of Wuhan and Hubei province, where the outbreak of the new coronavirus is believed to have started.
The virus has caused more than 100 deaths and has now spread across China and to at least 16 countries around the world.
Mr Shapps said that one of the issues facing the UK government was identifying exactly how many British citizens needed to be repatriated.
He said: “One of the things we’re asking people to do is to contact the consulate there to make them aware.”
The consulate is gathering all the information on British citizens in the area “in order to help repatriate where appropriate”, Mr Shapps said.
But Jason Neil and Sophie Hunt, who moved to Wuhan to teach English and have now spent more than five days in their apartment, said they contacted the embassy and received little response.
“We have contacted the embassy, we’ve emailed them and tried to ring them, and we got a really useless automated email response back from the embassy, saying not to go to Hubei,” said Ms Hunt.
“We’re like, we’re already here.”
Kharn Lambert’s grandmother arrived in Wuhan for a short visit, but has now become trapped in the city. Mr Lambert told the BBC her medication is running low.
He said: “Why is it possible that the American government, the French government, the Japanese government, can make these deals with the Chinese authorities to get their citizens out of the city – but the UK government can’t?”
Canadian Lauren Williams is expecting a baby with her British husband, Tom, in a month. She said she is worried that it is not currently known how the virus might affect a pregnant woman.
Mr Williams said: “Just advice would be great and very clear direction about what’s happening so we can make plans.”
On Monday, the Foreign Office said it was “working to make an option available for British nationals to leave Hubei province due to the heavy travel restrictions and increased difficulty of accessing consular or medical assistance”.
“The safety and security of British nationals is our number one priority,” a spokesman said.
Kathleen Bell, who has lived in Wuhan for two years, said the city is now a “surreal” place to be.
“Everything is in lockdown, the bridges are closed as well, so there’s not really a lot of movement,” she told BBC Radio 5 Live.
She said some people had ventured out to walk the streets after several days of confinement.
“Yesterday evening, people were calling from their windows singing to each other in the tall buildings,” she said.
Leaving the city is not easy, with the Chinese government requiring a two-week quarantine period for any evacuees, Ms Bell said.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said on Monday that anyone from the UK who had returned from Wuhan in the last two weeks was being asked to “self-isolate, to stay indoors and to avoid contact with other people”.