Travel to England from another country during coronavirus (COVID-19) (2023)


Check the COVID-19 rules for travel to England, including whether you need to take any tests.

Department for Transport and Department of Health and Social Care
22 June 2021
Last updated
5 January 2023 — See all updates

Applies to England

Travel from mainland China

There are different rules if you travel to England from mainland China.

(Video) England scraps COVID-19 rules as other countries lift travel measures

If you’re aged 12 or older, you will need to take a COVID-19 test no more than 2 days before you travel.

You will need to show notification of a negative COVID-19 test result when you depart mainland China for England. This will be checked by your airline, and you may be required to show this to Border Force on arrival to England.

This applies to all direct and indirect flights from mainland China. An indirect flight involves one or more stops in other countries or territories before arriving in England.

This includes people travelling from mainland China through Hong Kong and Macao, but not people travelling directly to England from Hong Kong and Macao.

It applies if England is your final destination, or if you will be transiting through England.

Transit through mainland China

These rules do not apply if your journey to England started in another country and you only transit ‘airside’ through mainland China. If you transit ‘landside’ (you pass through border control), then these COVID-19 travel rules do apply.

Test results

You must provide the original test result notification. Your test result must be in either English, French or Spanish.

Your test result can be provided as:

  • a printed document
  • an email or text message you can show on your phone – make sure your device is charged

It must include the following information:

  • your name, which should match the name on your travel documents
  • your date of birth or age
  • the result of the test
  • the date the test sample was collected or received by the test provider
  • the name of the test provider and their contact details
  • confirmation of the type of test taken, this can be a lateral flow or PCR

You cannot use an NHS-provided test as a pre-departure test.

You must retain your notification of a negative COVID-19 test result until you have passed through the UK border.

You may be fined if you do not follow these travel rules.

You may not need to take a pre-departure test if you have a work-related exemption or if you have a reasonable excuse.

From 8 January 2023, some passengers will be invited to take a voluntary test on arrival to monitor for potential new variants. This applies to passengers aged 18 or over who are travelling from mainland China and arriving at Heathrow Airport only.

Travel from all other countries and territories

When you travel to England, you:

  • do not need to complete a UK passenger locator form before you travel
  • do not need to take any COVID-19 tests before you travel or after you arrive
  • do not need to quarantine when you arrive

This applies whether you are vaccinated or not.

It includes people who are transiting through England.

(Video) "What's another two weeks?" - Brits plan to travel overseas despite UK COVID-19 quarantine risk

From 5 January 2023, different rules apply to people travelling from mainland China. See the section of this guidance about travel from mainland China.

Other countries may have rules about what you need to do to leave the country to travel to England. You should check travel advice for the country you are travelling from.

How to stay safe while in the UK and on public transport

Check separate public health guidance on how to stay safe and help prevent the spread of Coronavirus while you are in the UK.

Travel provider and transport hub rules

Your travel provider, or the transport hub you travel through, may have COVID-19 rules in place. For example they may require or advise you to wear a face covering.

You should follow any COVID-19 rules and guidance from:

  • your travel provider – airline, ferry, coach or train company
  • the transport venue – airport, port, coach or railway station

Red list countries and territories

There are currently no red list restrictions in place for travel to England.

Travel abroad from England

Other countries have rules about what you must do to travel there from England.

Read separate guidance about what you need to do to travel abroad from England.

Published 22 June 2021
Last updated 5 January 2023 +show all updates

  1. New rules for travel from China come into force today.

  2. More information about COVID-19 testing requirements for travel from mainland China to England.

  3. From 5 January, people flying from mainland China to England will be asked to take a COVID-19 pre-departure test.

  4. When you arrive in England from abroad you do not need to take any COVID-19 tests or fill in a UK passenger locator form.

  5. If you will arrive in England after 4am, Friday 18 March, you do not need to take any COVID-19 tests or fill in a UK passenger locator form.

    (Video) COVID-19: UK relaxes travel restrictions for US and all EU countries except France • FRANCE 24

  6. If you began your journey in Russia, you do not need to complete a passenger locator form, or take a COVID-19 test before travel to England or on arrival.

  7. If you began your journey in Ukraine, you do not need to complete a passenger locator form, or take a COVID-19 test before travel to England or on arrival.

  8. From 9am Monday 28 February, you can fill in the UK passenger locator form up to 3 days before you arrive in England.

  9. From 24 February, there is no legal requirement to self-isolate if you get a positive day 2 test result.

  10. You do not need to take any COVID-19 travel tests or self-isolate on arrival in England if you qualify as fully vaccinated.

  11. The testing and quarantine rules for international travel to England will change 11 February 2022.

  12. You can now choose a lateral flow test or a PCR test as your post arrival test.

  13. From 4am 7 January you do not have to quarantine on arrival in England if you qualify as fully vaccinated for travel to England.

  14. Changes to rules for fully vaccinated people travelling to England from 4am 7 January 2022.

  15. People who qualify as fully vaccinated for travel to England can now end self-isolation after 7 days with 2 negative lateral flow tests.

  16. Further information about quarantine rules for children aged 4 and under.

  17. People aged 12 years and over must COVID-19 test before they travel to England from abroad.

  18. From 4am, Tuesday 7 December all people aged 12 years and over must also take a PCR or LFD COVID-19 test before they travel to England from abroad.

  19. People who qualify as fully vaccinated must quarantine and take a PCR test before the end of day 2 after they arrive in England. Lateral flow tests will not be accepted.

  20. From 4am 30 November 2021, fully vaccinated people must self-isolate and take a PCR test before the end of day 2 after they arrive in England. They may leave self-isolation if their PCR result is negative. Lateral flow tests will not be accepted.

  21. South Africa, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Namibia and Zimbabwe will move onto the red list at 12.00 midday Friday 26 November. A temporary flight ban will be in place and all travellers who have been in these countries must quarantine and take tests.

  22. Travel to England rules for children no longer depend on their place of residence.

    (Video) UK to ease travel restrictions for COVID-19 'low risk' countries

  23. Clarification about unclear or inconclusive test results.

  24. From 4am 22 November 2021, all children aged 17 and under will not have to quarantine on arrival in England.

  25. People who qualify as fully vaccinated for travel to England can book a lateral flow test for use from 24 October instead of a PCR test.

  26. From 22 October, if you qualify as fully vaccinated for travel to England, you will be able to book an antigen lateral flow device (LFD) test instead of a PCR for your ‘on arrival’ test.

  27. Rule changes for international travel to England for people who qualify as fully vaccinated.

  28. Changes to amber list rules on quarantine and testing.

  29. First published.

(Video) NHS COVID Pass for travel from England | NHS


When Will travel restrictions be lifted US to UK? ›

UPDATED: US to Remove Travel Ban for EU & UK on Nov. 8 - All That Is Known So Far -

What are the current COVID rules in England? ›

There are no coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions in the UK.

If you have COVID-19 you should try to stay at home. Most people cannot get free COVID-19 tests. You can buy tests in shops but you cannot report the result to the NHS. You can get vaccinated against COVID-19 by the NHS.

What documents are required to enter the UK? ›

You must have a valid passport to enter the UK. It should be valid for the whole of your stay. You may also need a visa, depending on which country you're from.

What visa do US citizens need to go to UK? ›

Do US Citizens Need a Visa For UK? US citizens do not need to apply for a visa to enter the UK if they travel for tourism or business purposes, for stays up to six months. However, they are required to apply for all other types of visas in order to travel or stay in the UK.

Do I need a Covid test to fly to USA from UK? ›

Covid Testing for Travel to United States

UPDATE: As of 12th June, 2022, CDC no longer requires passengers traveling from a foreign country to the United States of America to show a negative Covid-19 test or a a Proof of Covid Recovery Letter before boarding their flight.

Can US citizens travel to London without visa? ›

Quick Facts. TOURIST VISA REQUIRED: Not required for stays less than six months.

How long can a US citizen stay in the UK? ›

You can visit the UK as a Standard Visitor for tourism, business, study (courses up to 6 months) and other permitted activities. You can usually stay in the UK for up to 6 months. You might be able to apply to stay for longer in certain circumstances, for example to get medical treatment.

How many hours is flight from UK to USA? ›

The average flight time from England to United States is 8 hours 40 minutes. However, the duration of flights can differ depending on weather conditions, flight path and congestion in the air. This means individual flight times can be quicker, but on occasion, they can also be longer.

How much does a Covid test cost UK? ›

Test kits cost from £1.89 - £17.

Do I need a PCR test? ›

You can get a PCR test if you have symptoms and you: are age 55 or older and have not had a COVID-19 vaccine booster dose. have a high-risk medical condition. have a weak immune system (immunocompromised)

Is social distancing still required in England? ›

Social distancing rules no longer apply in law. This means that local authorities, owners and operators do not need to implement social distancing (2m or 1m+) in outdoor public places, and the public do not need to keep apart from people they don't live with.

What do US citizens need to travel to London? ›

U.S. citizens, including dual nationals, are required by law to enter and exit the United States on a valid U.S. passport only. If you are a dual national and have a question about which passport to use to enter or exit another country, please contact the immigration authorities of that country for clarification.

What do I need to do after arriving in UK? ›

UK arrival checklist
  1. Contact friends and family. Call or email home to let your family and friends know you have arrived safely.
  2. Collect your keys. ...
  3. Collect your BRP. ...
  4. Attend university registration. ...
  5. Check your welcome timetable. ...
  6. Register with a GP. ...
  7. Get your National Insurance number. ...
  8. Access support.

What documents do I need to fly? ›

Passport, Travel Visa and National ID Card

Proper identification is the foundation of international travel. As a result, you should ensure to always have an official identification document with you. You can even consider having multiple documents such as your passport, national ID card or driver's licence.

How long does it take to get a UK visa from USA? ›

You should get a decision within 12 weeks once you either attend your appointment at the visa application centre or when you submit your online documents after completing the ID Check app.

How much is USA to UK visa? ›

Standard Visitor visa - for UK, Isle of Man, Jersey and Guernsey
Visa typesVisa application fee (USD)
Short-term (up to 6 months, single or multiple entry)125
Longer-term (valid for up to 2 years)471
Longer-term (valid for up to 5 years)838
Longer-term (valid for up to 10 years)1047
5 more rows

Can a US citizen get a UK visa? ›

UK Tourist Visas allow American citizens to enter the UK without the need for some of the more formal routes of immigration. Tourist visas are valid for any period of time up to a maximum of 6 months.

Does British Airways require COVID test? ›

If you're fully vaccinated, please upload your vaccine certificate. If you're not fully vaccinated, you'll need to test for COVID-19 within 72 hours prior to starting your journey and upload a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR certificate into the portal.

Does US require Covid test to return from international travel? ›

Before boarding a flight to the U.S., you will need to show a paper or digital copy of your test result for review by the airline and may be requested to show to public health officials after you arrive in the U.S.

Do you have to be vaccinated to fly from UK to US? ›

Air Travel: All non-U.S. citizen, non-U.S. immigrants traveling to the United States by air are required to show proof of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Can American citizen visit London? ›

Because Americans are known as non-visa nationals in the UK, to answer the question do American citizens need a visa for UK? They don't.

How much money do you need to enter the UK? ›

You must declare cash of £10,000 or more to UK customs if you're carrying it between Great Britain (England, Scotland and Wales) and a country outside the UK. If you're travelling as a family or group with more than £10,000 in total (even if individuals are carrying less than that) you still need to make a declaration.

Do US citizens have to pay to enter the UK? ›

(CNN) - You might have to do a little extra planning before your next international trip. The United Kingdom is implementing a new Electronic Travel Authorization scheme. It means U.S. travelers will have to get permission before entering the U.K.

Can Americans move to England? ›

As an American citizen, moving from the US to the UK to travel, study, and live is permitted for up to six months at a time. However, you cannot work during this period. If you want to hold down a job, you'll have to have a suitable visa. There are UK work visas for just about every possible profession.

Can an American retire in the UK? ›

Key Takeaways. Americans retiring to the U.K. need to qualify for a visa. The U.K. is expensive, though the farther from London, the more reasonable the prices are. American ex-pats can't join the U. K.'s National Health Service.

Can I move back to UK from USA? ›

Contrary to popular belief, you need a visa to move to the UK if you are an American citizen. The only exception to this is that if you are visiting with no long-term plans, you can stay in the UK without a visa for six months – but you cannot work during your visa-free stay.

What airlines fly from US to UK? ›

American Airlines, British Airways, Iberia, Finnair, Qatar Airways, KLM, Aer Lingus, Delta, Virgin Atlantic and Air France fly direct to England.

What is the cheapest month to fly to England? ›

High season is considered to be June, July and August. The cheapest month to fly from the United States is January.

How much is a flight from the US to the UK? ›

Prices were available within the past 7 days and start at $193 for one-way flights and $443 for round trip, for the period specified. Prices and availability are subject to change. Additional terms apply.

How to get a PCR test in UK? ›

You can no longer get free polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests from the NHS. Instead, you can buy PCR tests from shops and pharmacies, including online. You might be able to get free rapid lateral flow tests if you're eligible.

When should I do PCR test for travel? ›

Many require a negative PCR test to have been carried out no more than 72 hours before a flight, but please check the government's foreign travel advice for your destination to establish their exact requirements. We have clinics offering same day and next day results.

How much is a PCR test? ›

Express PCR test €89 results in 1-3hours. Rapid Antigen test €35 with results available after one hour.

Do I need a booster to travel? ›

Be aware that some countries are requesting evidence that you completed your COVID-19 vaccine course at least 14 days before arriving in their country. They may also require evidence of a booster dose depending on how long ago you completed your COVID-19 vaccine course.

Can you travel without COVID vaccine? ›

If you have not been fully vaccinated, you should continue to follow the entry requirements of the country you are travelling to, such as proof of a negative COVID-19 test on arrival. You should carefully research the requirements of your destination country before travelling.

How do i apply for free antigen tests? ›

You can book free antigen tests online if you have symptoms of COVID-19 and you:
  1. Have symptoms and you need to make a social welfare claim because you are off work due to COVID-19.
  2. Are a healthcare worker who is a household close contact with no symptoms and have not had COVID-19 in the past 3 months.
Dec 8, 2022

Do you need to wear a mask in the UK? ›

The use of face coverings is strongly recommended in all indoor settings accessible to the public across Northern Ireland. Wearing a face covering helps keep you and others safe from COVID-19.

Do I have to wear a mask at the doctors UK? ›

Patients are still required to wear face coverings in GP practices and other healthcare settings after COVID-19 restrictions ease.

Do people still wear masks? ›

You might still wear a mask to protect yourself during cold and flu season. Masks have been a valuable preventive tool throughout the pandemic, and some health experts have pointed out that COVID-19 is not the only reason to hold onto them.

What test do I need to travel from UK? ›

show proof of a negative COVID-19 test. quarantine on arrival. complete a passenger locator form to enter the country. show proof of vaccination status (plus any rules about vaccine expiry or vaccine boosters)

Do I need to get a Covid-19 test before traveling to the United States? ›

Are there COVID-related entry requirements for U.S. citizens? No. Is a negative COVID-19 test (PCR and/or serology) required for entry? No.

Which countries can enter UK without visa? ›

Nationals of countries/territories who do not need a visa to enter the UK: All EU countries, Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Grenada, Guatemala, Honduras, Hong Kong, Israel, Japan, Kiribati, Macau, Malaysia, ...

Do US citizens need a visa for Europe? ›

With a valid U.S. passport, you can stay up to 90 days for tourism or business during any 180-day period. Do not overstay! You must wait an additional 90 days before applying to re-enter the Schengen area. To stay longer than 90 days, you must have a visa.

Do I need Covid pass to enter UK? ›

The NHS COVID Pass is a way to show your coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination status or test results if you need to when you travel abroad. You do not need to show an NHS COVID Pass for domestic events and venues in England.

Do I still need a Covid test to fly? ›

You must show your negative result to the airline before you board your flight.

Do I still need a negative Covid test to return to the US? ›

Before boarding a flight to the United States, you are required to show a negative COVID-19 test result taken no more than 2 days before travel.

Will COVID vaccine be mandatory for international travel? ›

The White House announced that vaccines will be required for international travelers coming into the United States, with an effective date of November 8, 2021. For purposes of entry into the United States, vaccines accepted will include FDA approved or authorized and WHO Emergency Use Listing vaccines.

Can I travel from USA to UK without visa? ›

Quick Facts. TOURIST VISA REQUIRED: Not required for stays less than six months.

Can I enter the UK as a tourist? ›

You can visit the UK as a Standard Visitor for tourism, business, study (courses up to 6 months) and other permitted activities. You can usually stay in the UK for up to 6 months. You might be able to apply to stay for longer in certain circumstances, for example to get medical treatment.

What countries do not accept U.S. passport? ›

What countries do not accept U.S. passport? The only destination where it is forbidden for US citizens to travel to is North Korea, due to its closed border status for both US citizens and citizens of other countries.

What documents do I need to travel to Europe? ›

Citizens of the United States with a valid US passport can travel to 27 European member countries of the Schengen Area for a maximum of 90 days without having to apply for or obtain a Schengen visa for short-term tourism or a business trip.

Should you carry your passport with you in Europe? ›

Yes Or No – Carry Your Passport in Europe? In general, across Europe, you should carry either your passport or a copy of it. You are required by law to have a valid form of identification.

How long can a US citizen stay out of the country? ›

Absences of more than 365 consecutive days

You must apply for a re-entry permit (Form I-131) before you leave the United States, or your permanent residence status will be considered abandoned. A re-entry permit enables you to be abroad for up to two years. Apply for a re-entry permit.


1. Last COVID travel restrictions for entry to UK to end this week
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2. Denmark among countries added to England's travel quarantine list - COVID-19 update
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3. 🇬🇧 GOOD NEWS! No Covid Test Required Before You Travel To The UK! Here Is What You Need To Know
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4. COVID-19: UK COVID response to China travel 'under review' - Defence Secretary
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5. Pre-departure Covid-19 tests reintroduced for anyone travelling to the UK
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6. COVID-19 tests for China arrivals in England from January
(Sky News)
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