Traveler’s Guide During the Pandemic: People Who Can Visit UK

The United Kingdom underwent multiple lockdowns, given that it has one of the highest numbers of COVID-19 deaths in the world. 

On December 27, 2021, the UK reported 318,886 new cases – exceeding the previous record of over 100,000 recorded COVID cases last December 22 of the same year. As of January 5, 2022, the UK registered 1,316,578 new cases. Besides, 149,417 people died because of the diseases during the week leading to this date.

Northern Ireland, England, Wales, and Scotland face the Omicron variant threat. Given such circumstances, the UK reintroduce new health measures, yet how the four nations regulate them varies, including international travel.

Who Can Visit UK?

The UK authority ordered last December 7 that all travelers aged 12 and above present a negative COVID-19 test result, taken two days before departure. Regardless of the vaccination status and country of origin, passengers must undergo a PCR or an antigen test.

In England alone, even if the country still requires fully vaccinated individuals to do the day 2 COVID test or before day two of their arrival, it can be a cheaper lateral flow test only. Also, there is no need for self-isolation while waiting for the result.

On January 7, 2022, fully inoculated passengers returning to England, including below minor age, do not need to show a pre-departure test as confirmed by the English government. 

On the other hand, the UK subjected unvaccinated travelers to additional testing and quarantine requirements. Non-inoculated passengers aboard for the UK coming from green-listed nations should test negative in their pre-departure test and pay for a PCR test, both day two and day eight. 

Through the European Union (EU) Digital Covid Certificate, non-vaccinated arrivals into England could present a negative pre-departure test proof.

Besides, unvaccinated passengers from countries included in the green list need to quarantine themselves at home or the place they will stay along the way for 10 days. In England, non-inoculated people can finish their quarantine early with the Test to Release scheme. Yet, it does not apply to Wales, Northern Ireland, and Wales.

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