Changes to international travel

This info comes from Visit Britain. It might alleviate travel blockages in certain areas of the UK for the autumn. Vaccination is a plus in many cases.

New system for international travel

  • The UK Government has announced changes to international travel rules in England. From 4am Monday 4 October:
  • The current traffic light system is to be replaced by a single red list of countries and territories.
  • Rules for travel from countries and territories not on the red list will depend on people’s vaccination status.
  • Eligible fully vaccinated travellers will no longer need to take a Pre-Departure Test when travelling to England.
  • England will welcome fully vaccinated travellers from 17 new countries and territories. These include arrivals from Australia, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Bahrain, Brunei, Canada, Dominica, Israel, Japan, Kuwait, Malaysia, New Zealand, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Korea or Taiwan.

 

From the end of October

  • Eligible fully vaccinated passengers and those with an approved vaccine from a select group of non-red countries will be able to replace their day 2 test with a cheaper lateral flow test. Anyone testing positive will need to isolate and take a confirmatory PCR test, at no additional cost to the traveller; these will be genomically sequenced to help identify new variants.
  • Passengers who change flights or international trains during their journey will be able to follow the measures associated to their country of departure, rather than any countries they have transited through as part of their journey.

That’s an interesting one, as when my son visited from New Zealand last year, he transited Singapore Airport and was therefore governed by Singapore rules rather than New Zealand ones for self-isolation. 

 

Testing for unvaccinated passengers from non-red countries will include pre-departure tests, day 2 and day 8 PCR tests. Test to release remains an option to reduce self-isolation period.

 

Travel from the rest of the world if you are fully vaccinated

From 4am Monday 4 October, if you have been fully vaccinated for at least 14 days:

  • under an approved vaccination program in the UK, Europe, US or UK vaccine programme overseas
  • with a full course of the Oxford/AstraZeneca, Pfizer BioNTech, Moderna or Janssen vaccines from a relevant public health body in Australia, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Bahrain, Brunei, Canada, Dominica, Israel, Japan, Kuwait, Malaysia, New Zealand, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Korea or Taiwan – mixing between two-dose vaccines (Oxford/AstraZeneca, Pfizer BioNTech, Moderna) in this list is also recognised.
  • under a formally approved COVID-19 vaccine clinical trial in the US, Canada and Australia and have a proof of participation (digital or paper-based) from a public health body.

 

People must:

  • book and pay for a day 2 COVID-19 test – to be taken after arrival in England
  • complete your passenger locator form – any time in the 48 hours before you arrive in England.
  • take a COVID-19 test on or before day 2 after you arrive in England.

 

Countries removed from the red list

Turkey, Pakistan, the Maldives, Egypt, Sri Lanka, Oman, Bangladesh and Kenya will move off the red list for EnglandScotland and Wales from 4am Wednesday 22 September.

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