Outbound travel from the UK

Your destination country may require that a ‘Fit to Fly’ test be taken within a specified timeframe prior to entry, usually 48-72 hours before your departure. The destination country may mandate that the test be either a PCR or a rapid antigen/lateral flow test (LFD). Before travelling, please make sure to check the country’s testing requirements to find out what test you need, and when to take it.

Inbound travel to the UK

Depending on your vaccination status, the tests required for travelling to the UK differ. You can check if your vaccines are approved/eligible here.

Fully vaccinated travellers

Fully vaccinated travellers, as defined by the UK government, only need to take a test on or before Day 2 after arriving in the UK. This can be a rapid antigen/lateral flow test. There is no requirement to isolate until you receive a negative result.

The requirement to take a pre-departure test 48 hours before travelling to the UK was dropped on 07/01/22. The requirement to take a Day 2 PCR test and isolate until receiving a negative result was dropped on 09/01/22.

Non-fully vaccinated travellers

Non-fully vaccinated or unvaccinated travellers, as defined by the UK government, will need a few different tests. Before travelling to the UK, you’ll need to take a pre-departure test. This can be a PCR or rapid antigen/lateral flow test (LFD) and it must be taken no earlier than 48 hours before you begin the start of your journey to the UK.

After arriving in the UK, you must self-isolate for 10 full days. On Day 2 and Day 8 after arrival (with the day of arrival considered Day 0), you are required to take a PCR test. When your self-isolation period is over, you may exit quarantine, subject to your Day 8 test returning as negative.

If you test positive on your Day 2 test, you must continue to self-isolate for 10 days from the date you receive your test result. You will not be required to take your Day 8 test. If you test positive on your Day 8 test, you must self-isolate for 10 days from the date you receive your result. Please refer to government and NHS guidance for more information.

You can also take a Day 5 PCR test (known as Test to Release), to shorten your self-isolation. As soon as you have your results, you can exit quarantine early, but you must still take and return your Day 8 test.

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