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UK arrivals - pre-departure, quarantine and post-arrival [currently no requirements]

UK arrivals - pre-departure, quarantine and post-arrival [currently no requirements]

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Old Mar 19, 22, 12:55 am   -   Wikipost
Please read: This is a community-maintained wiki post containing the most important information from this thread. You may edit the Wiki once you have been on FT for 90 days and have made 90 posts.
 
Last edit by: NewbieRunner
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A reminder that this thread is about the self-isolation requirements for UK arrivals.

It is a help/Information resource for those travelling or returning to England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland from outside the UK. Let's concentrate on news, questions and answers that are relevant and on-topic and stay away from speculations about the spread of the virus, the performance of politicians and other topics which are more suitable for OMNI.

Please stay within these requirements to avoid issues.

LATEST UPDATES

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/travel-t...virus-covid-19


18 March travel to the UK changes

If you will arrive in the UK from abroad after 4am, Friday 18 March, you do not need to:
  • take any COVID-19 tests Ė before you travel or after you arrive
  • fill in a UK passenger locator form before you travel

This will apply whether you are vaccinated or not.

You also will not need to quarantine when you arrive, in line with current rules.
Other countries still have COVID-19 entry rules in place. You should check travel advice before you travel.
If you will arrive in England before 4am, 18 March, you must follow the current rules as set out in this guidance.

*****

The following historical information is retained for the time being.

The Passenger Locator Form for passengers arriving into the UK can be found here:
https://visas-immigration.service.go...r-locator-form
This can only be completed once you are within 48 hours of arrival in the UK.

Exemption list from quarantine requirements - specific details:
https://www.gov.uk/government/public...k-border-rules

England
Statutory instrument for individual passengers arriving in to England: https://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2021/582/contents (this html version is updated, but may not have the very latest updates for Statutory Instruments released in the last few days)

Test to release for England only from 15 December, see post 4776 https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/32841066-post4776.html

Statutory instrument for transport providers http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2.../contents/made

Scotland
Statutory instrument for individual passengers arriving in to Scotland: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ssi/2020/169/contents (this html version is updated)

Wales
Statutory instrument for individual passengers arriving in to Wales: https://www.legislation.gov.uk/wsi/2020/574/contents (this html version is updated) &
Welsh language version: https://www.legislation.gov.uk/wsi/2...0200574_we.pdf

Northern Ireland
Statutory instrument https://www.legislation.gov.uk/nisr/2021/99/contents (this html version is updated)


PRACTICAL GUIDANCE FOR QUICK RELEASE FROM SELF-ISOLATION (based on November 28th updates)
[This section has been moved lower down in the wiki post following the change in self-isolation rule on 7th January 2022[

Any PCR test noted as a UK Government Day 2 test will be accepted for release from self isolation as soon as you get the negative result. If it is any other PCR test (eg "Fit to Fly") and not advertised specifically as a Day 2 test then it won't be valid.

This means that you can:[list]
  • Book a suitable Day 2 PCR test before you travel and use the booking reference for the test on the PLF (Passenger Locator Form).
    • On your day of arrival go to your scheduled test.
      • Proceed to you place of self-isolation and await the result, which will hopefully be same / next day.

        Alternatively:
        • Book any Day 2 PCR test before you travel even if you do not intend to use this test, and use the booking reference for the test on the PLF to ensure entry to the UK.
          • Note that you are not strictly required to have a PCR booking before arrival, but your carrier might not know that so you run the risk of being denied boarding
          • On your day of arrival (or before end of Day 2) go to a walk-in test centre and take a different test to the one you booked.
            • Proceed to you place of self-isolation and await the result, which will hopefully be same / next day.

        If you are leaving the UK before the end of day 2 then you do not need to take a test, but are required to self-isolate for the duration of your trip (since you do not have a negative result). Also, if you are self-isolating while waiting for a result (and hence have not been informed of a positive result and need to isolate) you may travel to leave the country.

        If you take a test and it is positive for any variant of COVID you will be required to isolate for 10 days from the date of the test.

        Whether you take a test or not you may be contacted by the UK Test and Trace system at any time if it becomes apparent that you have been in contact with another case. This is very unlikely to happen before day 3 if it is in relation to your flight to UK. Depending on the suspected / identified variant for that case and if you are fully-vaccinated by an accepted programme (see below for links to what this means and valid exemptions) :
        • Omnicron or not fully-vaccinated: You will be required to isolated for 10 days, including a bar on travel to leave the country. A negative Day 2 test does not release you from this requirement.
          • Other and fully vaccinated : You will not be required to isolate.

Test Providers for Day 2/8 tests & Day 5 Test to release
This section is for FTers to post their experience with specific providers (good or bad). Keep it brief and to the point. Please mention how the service is provided and your FT name.

DNA Workplace - Postal - Test kits arrived with me on time. Royal Mail slow for return. 5+ days for Day 2 result. #DaveS
DNA Workplace - Postal - Test kits both arrived on time, video of tests required, results by late evening Day 3 and Day 9. #TSE
ExpressTest Gatwick - Drive through - Tested early at 1000 a few times for TTR. Results came through in evening. #DaveS
NowTest - Postal - Day 2 kit arrived on time, day 8 did not. Will update with result arrival times when applicable. #wilsnunn
Collinson - Postal - Day 5 Test to Release kit arrived in time. Results and release by end of day 6. #tjcxx
CTM - Postal - Days 2/8 kits arrived together in time. Both sent results 2 days after posting. #tjcxx
Qured (Oncologica) - Postal -Day 2/8 kits arrived late. Results 3+ days from posting. #Gagravarr
Qured (Oncologica) - Postal - Day 2/8 kits arrived on time. Day 2 result on Day 5 and Day 8 result on Day 10 - happy customer! #EddLegll
Qured (Ocnologica) - Postal - Day 2/8 kits arrived on time. Day 2 result on Day 5 (after bedtime; ironically after my TTR result). #KSVVZ2015
Anglia DNA - Postal - Day 2/8 kits arrived early. (Both were labelled Day2). Results on Day 4 and Day 9. Cheapest on the list at the time, and good service/result. #tjcxx
Qured - Pre-flight test booked and bought through BA. Very efficient service. Highly recommended. #lhrsfo
Randox - Days 2 and 8. Booked two days before return, using BA discount. Kits already arrived on return. Slightly confusing instructions but manageable. Used Randox dropbox and results next day. Good. #lhrsfo
Randox - Day 2 (also used as pre departure test for a London to Milan flight). Used a drop box and results arrived at midnight the next day. #11101
Randox - Day 2 test centre - 2h30 queues outside the test centre in Waterloo. Results of antigen arrived 45 minutes later. #11101
Collinson - Test to Release at LHR T2. Good trip out! Very efficient service and well organised. Used BA discount. Results by end of day. Excellent. #lhrsfo
DAM - Test to Release in Fulham (they have many locations) - the cheapest fast turnaround TTR we have found. They promise 24 hours but in reality me, my wife, and my son (on different days) have received results inside of 12 hours. Very efficient staff as well. Princes outside of Central London as low as 99 GBP. Fulham is 129 GBP. #KSVVZ2015
Boots/Source Bioscience - days 2&8. Both packs sent in the same mail, waiting at the isolation address. Dropped off at postbox at 4pm, result back next day between 4 and 5 pm, very effective. Bought from Boots, £160, but same package sold directly bu Source Bioscience is just £120. Aaargh! Instructions said nasal and throat swabs, did only nasal and marked accordingly, no issues. #WilcoRoger
Collinsons/Stansted walkin TTR - test taken 1:30 pm, email with results 10:10 pm same day If the BA20OFF doesn't work (didn't work for us) there's another discount on the airport's site #WilcoRoger
Ordered Day-2 kit from Chronomics a week before our return for £18.99. Duly dispatched day we were returning to UK, so arrived on day following return. Reasonably simple process to do test and upload -ve result picture. Not sure where +ve result would have led to... #EsherFlyer
Hale Clinic testing centre (near Oxford Circus) - While not the least expensive, appoint schedules are accurate and results returned in promised timeframe. I've used the clinic for Day 2 tests (twice) and antigen test for US (once). I would def utilize again. #ecaarch
Halo at T5 (Sofitel) - Day 2 PCR spit test. Took the test 7pm, results arrived 7am the next day. No queues but a slightly awkward process to follow.

Useful data sources:

New cases per 100k - 7 days: https://covid19.who.int/table
New tests per 1000 - 7 days: https://ourworldindata.org/coronavirus-testing
Vaccination doses per 100: https://ourworldindata.org/covid-vaccinations
Sequenced samples uploaded to GISAID: https://www.gisaid.org/index.php?id=208
NHS Track & Trace data (positivity rates for arriving passengers are published every three weeks, so if you can't find the data in the current release it will be in one of the previous two) https://www.gov.uk/government/collec...weekly-reports https://assets.publishing.service.go...ut_week_50.ods
UK daily COVID data https://coronavirus.data.gov.uk/?_ga...827.1594116739
Risk assessment methodology to inform international travel traffic light system
Data informing international travel traffic-light risk assessments


Testing Terminology
Notes which may assist with understanding which tests to use and with "reuse" of UK tests for other countries regulations:
  • LFT: Lateral Flow Test - A rapid antigen test using nasal / throat swab typically performed by the traveler at home, hotel, etc using simple disposable device. Usually tests the "outer shell" of the nucleus (which causes the symptoms and is reasonably stable across variants) and not the "spikes" (which allow new variants to invade more easily), so gives a positive result for many variants. (See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/COVID-...d_antigen_test)
  • PCR: Polymerase Chain Reaction - A laboratory based test which looks at the nucleus of the virus to determine which specific variant it is. After a positive LFT test ("I have some form of COVID") a PCR test ("You have the Gamma variant") allows identification and tracking of new variants to see if they are likely to become a "variant of concern". (See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polymerase_chain_reaction)
  • NAAT: Nucleic Acid Amplification Test - A general class of laboratory based tests which includes PCR, LAMP, etc tests. (See https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019...b/naats.html)
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Old Aug 17, 21, 4:16 pm
  #10381  
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: LAX
Programs: AA EXP.
Posts: 1,078
Went from JMK-LCY today. After uploading everything into verifly the check in agent said she didnt know what that app was and asked for all my docs again. Got to LCY was told that only EU and UK can u se E gates thankfully there was no line. Border Patrol asked me about which countries ive been to and where I live. Took my day 2 test right outside the airport and hopped in my uber.
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Old Aug 17, 21, 6:28 pm
  #10382  
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Las Vegas
Programs: BA Gold; Hilton Honors Gold
Posts: 2,448
I had a courtesy call from BA at LAX this afternoon, ahead of tomorrow's flight with them to London. Unfortunately I missed the call but the voicemail was primarily a reminder about the travel requirements. However, somewhat worryingly, the agent who left the VM stated that I needed either a PCR test taken within 72 hours of departure (wrong - as the requirement is 3 days) or an antigen test taken within 48 hours of departure (also wrong, as it's 3 days and there's no distinction between PCR or antigen tests). Fortunately I am checking in with AA tomorrow (at the airport as online check-in isn't available, no doubt because of the need to check documents including my test result and PLF) so hopefully that goes smoothly. I can really do without such a basic, fundamental misunderstanding of the UK entry requirements occurring at LAX tomorrow!
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Old Aug 18, 21, 7:35 am
  #10383  
 
Join Date: Jul 2021
Posts: 18
Originally Posted by ukchris View Post
I'm booked to fly AA BOS-LHR on Sept. 9th and am a little confused with VeriFly, I guess I have plenty of time but when I try to add a trip for travel date it just gives me a list of dates in August (basically tomorrow through Aug 31st) and no way to choose September. It's been like this for a week so it doesn't seem to be a rolling window. I keep checking back assuming September will appear but no joy yet - has anyone else experienced this with VeriFly (on iOS)?
I used Verifly on a recent trip and it was hit and miss. It tends to work closer to your departure, so donít worry about it now. Heading into Cdg I was able to get everything uploaded by a couple days before departure. Coming home I was never able to complete my husbandís attestation because it kept defaulting to my name. It didnít matter a bit though - the gate agent at Lhr took the info and my husband quickly signed a paper attestation.
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Old Aug 18, 21, 8:14 am
  #10384  
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: NH, USA
Programs: AA Million Miler, Marriott/SPG Lifetime Plat
Posts: 393
Originally Posted by Channel28 View Post
I used Verifly on a recent trip and it was hit and miss. It tends to work closer to your departure, so donít worry about it now. Heading into Cdg I was able to get everything uploaded by a couple days before departure. Coming home I was never able to complete my husbandís attestation because it kept defaulting to my name. It didnít matter a bit though - the gate agent at Lhr took the info and my husband quickly signed a paper attestation.
Thanks, I'll keep trying as the data gets closet, my flight tests are with QURED who I believe send a VeriFly link, I'm sure it's best to take a better safe than sorry approach and have printed copies, emails and VeriFly - just in case.
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Old Aug 18, 21, 8:26 am
  #10385  
 
Join Date: Jul 2021
Posts: 18
Originally Posted by ukchris View Post
Thanks, I'll keep trying as the data gets closet, my flight tests are with QURED who I believe send a VeriFly link, I'm sure it's best to take a better safe than sorry approach and have printed copies, emails and VeriFly - just in case.
DEFINITELY have printed copies - itís the best backup
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Old Aug 18, 21, 9:30 am
  #10386  
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: SF Bay Area
Programs: BA, UA, Southwest
Posts: 77
Originally Posted by Geordie405 View Post
I had a courtesy call from BA at LAX this afternoon, ahead of tomorrow's flight with them to London. Unfortunately I missed the call but the voicemail was primarily a reminder about the travel requirements. However, somewhat worryingly, the agent who left the VM stated that I needed either a PCR test taken within 72 hours of departure (wrong - as the requirement is 3 days) or an antigen test taken within 48 hours of departure (also wrong, as it's 3 days and there's no distinction between PCR or antigen tests). Fortunately I am checking in with AA tomorrow (at the airport as online check-in isn't available, no doubt because of the need to check documents including my test result and PLF) so hopefully that goes smoothly. I can really do without such a basic, fundamental misunderstanding of the UK entry requirements occurring at LAX tomorrow!
Wow. I wish I was surprised, but I've had BA issues with wrong info. On my flight in May I received an email from them stating that i "must" quarantine and take a test when I returned back to the US (which is wrong and has been a recommendation only for a long time). But a big airline passing on clearly wrong info is still brutal. Clearly they need to frequent this thread!
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Old Aug 18, 21, 11:04 am
  #10387  
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Sacramento, CA
Programs: Marriott / Delta
Posts: 7
I completed my PLF for my original flight itinerary, however due to a DELTA flight cancellation, instead of flying LAX-NYC-LHR, I was flown LAX-AMS-LHR. No one checked in PLF, and connecting through Amsterdam was painful, as they need to "verify" your COVID test results, and PLF. The lady checking mine, did neither - didn't even look at the electronic COVID test, and the PLF was 100% wrong, as it was for my original itinerary. It was pretty bad.

The Day 2 COVID test on arrival at Heathrow was also confusing, as I booked it for LHR T3 (arriving on DELTA), but since i arrived with KLM, I was at T2. However, I did ExpressTest, and they were great, I went in, did the test, and it was absolutely fine, even though the website said they had no availability. Basically, it left me with no confidence about anything you read on-line, and just need to chance it and hopefully it will all work out, as no one has any idea what's happening.
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Old Aug 18, 21, 11:10 am
  #10388  
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Redondo Beach, Ca
Posts: 27,308
I am sure this has been asked and answered 1000x so my apologies for the question. I am flying on 9/1 LAX-JFK-LHR and then transiting on to Croatia that same morning. As I understand it, transiting passengers do not need any type of tests to fly into LHR, correct? Of course we will not be leaving the airport but maybe have to switch terminals.
I do know that upon my return to the US, I will need a Covid test (not sure what kind) which I will take care of in Dubrovnik.
thanks--very informative forum during a confusing time!
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Old Aug 18, 21, 11:11 am
  #10389  
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Las Vegas
Programs: BA Gold; Hilton Honors Gold
Posts: 2,448
Originally Posted by remaxmac View Post
Wow. I wish I was surprised, but I've had BA issues with wrong info. On my flight in May I received an email from them stating that i "must" quarantine and take a test when I returned back to the US (which is wrong and has been a recommendation only for a long time). But a big airline passing on clearly wrong info is still brutal. Clearly they need to frequent this thread!
It's a fair point, I agree. I'd assume that only a very small percentage of passengers visit FT on a regular basis and, for the majority, they will rely heavily on what the airline tells them. Such blatantly incorrect information is bound to get some people really worried. As it happens, we live only a 10 minute drive from LAS so we drove over there last night to check in with AA. We have a pretty hectic schedule today and didn't want to arrive to find huge queues at the airport or run into other issues. The airport was pretty much deserted. We had uploaded all the relevant documents to VeriFLY and the agent was thrilled that we'd done so. Apart from scanning our passports that was it - no need to show any other documentation. All of our boarding passes were issued, and we were also then able to download our electronic BPs from the AA and BA apps. Obviously this is how it should be, but I was still relieved that it went according to plan. Now we just have to actually fly
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Old Aug 18, 21, 11:13 am
  #10390  
Ambassador, British Airways; FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Leeds, UK
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Originally Posted by corky View Post
I am sure this has been asked and answered 1000x so my apologies for the question. I am flying on 9/1 LAX-JFK-LHR and then transiting on to Croatia that same morning. As I understand it, transiting passengers do not need any type of tests to fly into LHR, correct? Of course we will not be leaving the airport but maybe have to switch terminals.
I do know that upon my return to the US, I will need a Covid test (not sure what kind) which I will take care of in Dubrovnik.
thanks--very informative forum during a confusing time!
Yes you need a pre arrivals test even if transiting the UK and even if staying airside. You also need to submit a passenger locator form online.

If your bags are not checked through you will have to go through immigration on arrival at LHR, collect your bags and go landside, move to another terminal if your onward flight is not from the same terminal, and re-check your bags.

Some information here on what tests are acceptable https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavi...d#type-of-test
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Old Aug 18, 21, 11:46 am
  #10391  
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Originally Posted by KARFA View Post
Yes you need a pre arrivals test even if transiting the UK and even if staying airside. You also need to submit a passenger locator form online.

If your bags are not checked through you will have to go through immigration on arrival at LHR, collect your bags and go landside, move to another terminal if your onward flight is not from the same terminal, and re-check your bags.

Some information here on what tests are acceptable https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavi...d#type-of-test
Thank you....was not expecting to have to test. Oh well. I am carrying on bags only but I guess I still have to go through immigration. This will be fun with a tight connection. Yikes.
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Old Aug 18, 21, 11:57 am
  #10392  
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: NH, USA
Programs: AA Million Miler, Marriott/SPG Lifetime Plat
Posts: 393
Originally Posted by KARFA View Post
Yes you need a pre arrivals test even if transiting the UK and even if staying airside. You also need to submit a passenger locator form online.

If your bags are not checked through you will have to go through immigration on arrival at LHR, collect your bags and go landside, move to another terminal if your onward flight is not from the same terminal, and re-check your bags.

Some information here on what tests are acceptable https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavi...d#type-of-test
Is there a major significance for the "three day rule" based on arrival? I fly on Sunday 9/5 at 9pm EST, arrive LHR 8:00am GMT Monday 9/6, I have my outbound test booked for 10am on Friday 9/3 at 10:00am EST. I realize it is officially the three preceding days, my test should be (if my math serves me well) 65 hours prior to arrival as I don't want to push it to the weekend ideally. Does this make sense? Still a little wary about doing it early enough but not too early in case of delays and taking the weekend into consideration etc.
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Old Aug 18, 21, 11:58 am
  #10393  
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
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Posts: 530
Originally Posted by corky View Post
Thank you....was not expecting to have to test. Oh well. I am carrying on bags only but I guess I still have to go through immigration. This will be fun with a tight connection. Yikes.
With only carry-on bags you won't have to go through immigration, even if you change terminals. Just security.
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Old Aug 18, 21, 12:01 pm
  #10394  
Ambassador, British Airways; FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
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Originally Posted by ukchris View Post
Is there a major significance for the "three day rule" based on arrival? I fly on Sunday 9/5 at 9pm EST, arrive LHR 8:00am GMT Monday 9/6, I have my outbound test booked for 10am on Friday 9/3 at 10:00am EST. I realize it is officially the three preceding days, my test should be (if my math serves me well) 65 hours prior to arrival as I don't want to push it to the weekend ideally. Does this make sense? Still a little wary about doing it early enough but not too early in case of delays and taking the weekend into consideration etc.
It's 3 days before departure on the flight to England, rather than 3 days before arrival, so Friday seem perfectly fine for your flight departing on Sunday.

You must take the test in the 3 days before the service on which you will arrive in England departs.
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Old Aug 18, 21, 12:17 pm
  #10395  
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Originally Posted by tjcxx View Post
With only carry-on bags you won't have to go through immigration, even if you change terminals. Just security.
Well then at what point will I have to provide my Covid test results? I still can't believe they are requiring a test for transit pax. I assume that if I don't have to change terminals I might avoid security. I have managed to avoid LHR on my travels for about 5 years now. Such a zoo.
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