Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic update

22 March 2022

Article: 56/1101

From 04:00 on 18 March 2022, the COVID-19 rules for entering the UK from abroad have changed, with all travellers to the UK, regardless of their COVID-19 vaccination status, no longer being required to:

  • take pre-departure or post-arrival COVID-19 tests
  • show proof of their vaccination status when arriving in the UK
  • complete a passenger locator form
  • quarantine on arrival to the UK 

It should be noted that these rules only apply to travellers arriving in the UK, as many other countries still have restrictions in place for travellers entering their country from abroad. Therefore, travellers still have a requirement to check and follow the entry requirements and rules for each of the countries they will be travelling to. Details of these rules can be found on the FCDO foreign travel advice pages.

UK travellers are advised to follow the advice below if planning on travelling abroad.

  1. Review the FCDO foreign travel advice pages for the latest information on coronavirus, safety and security, entry requirements and travel warnings.

    • Travellers should check the advice for each of the countries they intend to travel or transit through.
    • Some countries may refuse entry to travellers from the UK if the level of COVID-19 is high in the UK.
    • The FCDO may advise against travelling to a country if their level of COVID-19 is high.
    • Also, note the TRAVAX coronavirus FAQ page provides useful advice on:
      • obtaining proof of vaccination status to travel abroad
      • where travellers can obtain a COVID-19 test to travel abroad
      • travellers who have not been fully vaccinated against COVID-19
      • obtaining a negative PCR test if they recently had COVID-19 infection
      • COVID-19 recovery certificates

  2. Check the risk of exposure to coronavirus (COVID-19) at their destination, which will be listed under the Emerging Health Risks tab of each TRAVAX country page. Travellers should consider their risk of developing severe COVID-19 and check the availability of medical facilities at their destination, while being aware that services may be overwhelmed due to COVID-19.

  3. Travellers should ensure they have adequate travel insurance cover for the duration of their trip.

  4. Travellers should check the UK border force rules for re-entering the UK and be aware of any additional rules depending on if they are travelling to Scotland, England, Northern Ireland or Wales.

  5. Travellers should consider other health risks when travelling during the COVID-19 pandemic, as they may be exposed to a range of illnesses and health risks during travel, other than COVID-19.

Travellers should be advised to review the fitfortravel country pages relevant to their destinations to find:

  • up-to-date travel health recommendations for that country
  • advice on health risks to be aware of at their destination
  • if there is a need to consider receiving any vaccinations, boosters or purchasing antimalarial tablets before travel

All travellers should comply with local public health requirements, such as physical distancing, wearing of face coverings, self-isolation etc in the country they are visiting and to maintain good hand hygiene and respiratory hygiene measures at all times regardless of their vaccination status or if they have recovered from COVID-19 infection. 

Detailed advice on points to consider when planning travel, including advice on reducing the risk of exposure to coronavirus (COVID-19), can be found on the fitfortravel website.

Currently COVID-19 vaccines are not available solely for the purposes of travel, however travellers should be encouraged to participate in the UK COVID-19 vaccination programme. 

Travellers should be advised to always seek medical advice if they develop a fever and have recently travelled abroad and to advise their health care professional about recent travel history, particularly if they have travelled to a malaria-endemic country. 

Source: TRAVAX, 18 March 2022