Some countries require either a negative Covid-19 test certificate to gain entry or proof of vaccination. Entry requirements can change at any time, so we strongly advise you check the FCDO website for the very latest guidance. In addition, the FCDO can also advise on the type of test required as well as the likely testing time frame for the country you intend to visit.
To find test facilities in your local area visit this site - https://www.covid19-testing.org/travel-testing
What is a PCR Test
PCR stands for Polymerase Chain Reaction and is a type of test that checks if the Covid-19 virus is present in your body.
For more information on the types of available tests please visit: gov.uk/government/publications/how-tests-and-testing-kits-for-coronavirus-covid-19-work/for-patients-the-public-and-professional-users-a-guide-to-covid-19-tests-and-testing-kits
Test to release for international travel from countries on the Amber list (for non vaccinated passengers)
The Government has introduced the ‘test to release for international travel’ scheme for people who need to self-isolate on arrival in England. You can choose to pay for a private Covid-19 test to reduce the amount of time you need to self-isolate for. The earliest you can take the test is five full days after you have left a destination not on the travel corridor list. If you were to not opt into the scheme you would need to self-isolate for the full ten days. For more information please visit: gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-test-to-release-for-international-travel
Testing for people travelling to England
- All international arrivals to England, including UK nationals, are now required to have a negative Covid-19 test taken in the 3 days prior to leaving your resort. (children under the age of 11 do not need to have taken a test)
- All passengers aged 5 and over are required to have a Covid PCR test on or before day 2 after arriving home. This test must be booked prior to flying home and the details of the test should be included on the passenger locator form.
- All vaccinated passengers and children under the age of 18 arriving from a country on the Amber list will be exempt from the 10 day quarantine period and the day 8 covid test.
- All non vaccinated passengers arriving from countries on the Amber list will still need to self-isolate for ten days regardless of the result. The ‘Test to Release for International Travel’ scheme can still be used to reduce the self-isolation period to five days. You can quarantine at home or in the place you’re staying for 10 days (the day you arrive in England counts as day 0). You must have booked and take a Covid PCR test on or before day 2 (the day you arrive is classed as day 0) and on or after day 8 of quarantining unless your job qualifies you for exemption. The test on or before day 2 is for variant surveillance and the test on day 8 is to check that you do not have Covid. This applies to all travellers aged 5 and over. Once you’ve quarantined for 10 full days and received a negative result to both your day 2 and day 8 tests, and you are well, you may leave the place where you’re quarantining. After 5 days, you do have the option to ‘Test to release’ when arriving back into England from an Amber country. If you use this scheme, you must still take a test on or before day 2 and on or after day 8, unless exempt.
- All passengers arriving from countries on the Red list will need to pay for and pre-book a 10 day government managed hotel quarantine and have a Covid-19 PCR test on day 8 of your quarantine.
- All travellers are still required to complete the passenger locator form.
- For more information please visit: gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-testing-for-people-travelling-to-england
- For more information please visit: gov.uk/guidance/how-to-quarantine-when-you-arrive-in-england You should follow separate guidance if you have been in a country where travel to the UK is banned (red list countries). For more information please visit: gov.uk/guidance/transport-measures-to-protect-the-uk-from-variant-strains-of-covid-19
Testing at UK airports
We advise you check the FCDO resources to understand the type of test required and when they are required for the country you intend to travel to. The Government has also compiled a list of private test providers as part of the ‘Test to Release for International Travel’ scheme. Follow the link for more information: gov.uk/government/publications/list-of-private-providers-of-coronavirus-testing/list-of-private-providers-of-coronavirus-testing
ABTA guidance for staying safe on holiday: abta.com/tips-and-advice/staying-safe-on-holiday
The latest advice from the Government on safe air travel is available at: gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-safer-air-travel-guidance-for-passengers