The UK Government introduced a new system based on people’s vaccination status, rather than the Covid-19 status of other countries.
Before 4 October 2021, The traffic light system was in action. Countries were placed on the red, amber and green lists depending on the Covid-19 situation in each nation. The entering rules depended on the country people were travelling from.
Changes to international travel rules
From 4 am Monday 4 October 2021, the rules for international travel to England will change. Of the three lists, it was decided to keep only the red one while arrivals from the rest of the countries would be simplified. From now on, they will depend on travellers’ vaccination status.
Rules for fully vaccinated travellers
If you qualify as fully vaccinated, you will have to:
- 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 two after you arrive in England
Under the new rules, you will NOT need to:
- take a pre-departure test
- take a day 8 COVID-19 test
Who is qualify as fully vaccinated?
You must have had a complete course of an approved vaccine at least 14 days before you arrived in England. Approved vaccines are:
- Those of an approved vaccination programme in the UK, Europe, USA or UK vaccine programme overseas;
- 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, Taiwan or the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
AstraZeneca Covishield, AstraZeneca Vaxzevria and Moderna Takeda are also approved.
It is allowed to mix two different types of approved vaccines or two different approved programmes.
You will need to provide a document (digital or paper-based) from a national or state-level public health body that includes, as a minimum:
- 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
If you are fully vaccinated, but your vaccine is not approved, or you do not have the necessary documents, you must follow the non-vaccinated rules.
Rules for non-vaccinated and partially vaccinated travellers
Before you travel to England you must:
- take a pre-departure COVID-19 test – to be taken in the three days before you travel to England
- book and pay for day 2 and day 8 COVID-19 tests – to be taken after arrival in England
- complete your passenger locator form – in the 48 hours before you arrive in England
After you arrive in England you must:
- quarantine at home or in the place you are staying for ten days
- take a COVID-19 test on or before day 2 and on or after day 8
You may be able to end quarantine early if you pay for a private COVID-19 test through the Test to Release scheme.
Travel from red list countries
Only British or Irish nationals and UK residents can travel to England from the Red list countries.
Before they travel to England, they must:
- take a pre-departure COVID-19 test in the three days before travel to England
- book a quarantine hotel package, including 2 COVID-19 tests
- complete passenger locator form in the 48 hours before arrival
The red list will be reviewed every three weeks.