News & Insights

Entering the UK during the COVID-19 pandemic

No pre-departure test for fully vaccinated travellers from 7 January 2022.

The current system in England distinguishes between red list countries/territories and the rest of the world. For more details if you are travelling to England from a red list country or territory see our article below. There are different rules for vaccinated and unvaccinated travellers arriving from the rest of the world countries.

From 11 February 2022 onwards fully vaccinated travellers no longer have to take a pre-departure test or a day 2 test on arrival in England.  Not fully vaccinated travellers must take a pre-departure test and a PCR within 2 days of their arrival  in England.

Who is fully vaccinated?

 Fully vaccinated are travellers who have completed course at least 14 days before arriving in England. The approved vaccines include Covaxin, Moderna, Janssen, Novavax (Nuvaxovid and Covovax), Oxford/AstraZeneca, Pfizer BioNTech, Sinopharm Beijing, Sinovac-CoronaVac. 2 different types of vaccine can be mixed.

The Home Office has published a list of countries/territories with approved programmes.

The proof of vaccination can be shown through:

The vaccine certificate must be issued by a national or state-level public health authority, be in English, French or Spanish, and include at least:

  • forename and surname(s)
  • date of birth
  • vaccine brand and manufacturer
  • date of vaccination for every dose
  • country or territory of vaccination and/or certificate issuer

Fully vaccinated travellers are required to:

  • complete a passenger locator form – any time in the 48 hours before arrival in England

No day 2 test is required to be taken by fully vaccinated travellers anymore.

If the traveller cannot provide proof of being fully vaccinated (as above) the rules for unvaccinated travellers must be followed.

Not fully vaccinated travellers

Before travelling to England:

  • take a pre-departure COVID-19 test – to be taken in the 2 days before arrival in England
    • book and pay for a day 2 COVID-19 tests – to be taken after arrival in England
    • complete a passenger locator form – any time in the 48 hours before arrival in England

After arrival in England:

  • take a PCR COVID-19 test on or before day 2

Passenger Locator Form

Travellers must provide their journey and contact details by completing the Passenger Locator Form in the 48 hours before arriving in the UK.

The completed form must be presented at the UK border on arrival, either by printing a copy, or showing it on a mobile phone.

The government will use this information to contact the traveller if a person they were travelling with develops coronavirus symptoms.

Each traveller must complete a separate form.

If travelling with someone under 18 years old, they can be included on the same form if they are staying at the same UK address. If entering Scotland, they must be under 16.

Who does not need to complete the form?

Travellers from one of the following places, provided they were there for 10 days or more:

  • UK (England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland)
  • Ireland
  • the Channel Islands
  • the Isle of Man

Travellers who have a job on the exempt jobs list also do not need to complete the form.

To complete the form, travellers will need:

  • passport details
  • travel details, including times and dates
  • the UK address where they will be staying (if applicable)
  • the booking reference number and name of the test provider, if using Test to Release to find out if they can end self-isolation early
  • booking reference numbers for the COVID-19 test(s) they must take after arriving in the UK
  • booking reference number confirming their quarantine hotel booking (if applicable)

Travellers will have to declare if they are fully vaccinated and be able to show proof of their vaccination status if they want to make use of the new rules for fully vaccinated under the UK vaccination programme.

If any details change after submitting the passenger locater form a new form must be completed.

FSP can advise you on all aspects of inbound immigration to the UK and will keep you up to date with the latest developments as they are published from the Home Office.

If you require assistance, please contact our Head of Immigration, [email protected].