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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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Mod note on thread engagement:

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 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 Sep 15, 21, 2:56 am
  #10966  
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Kazakhstan
Programs: BA Gold, AirAstana Silver (much use as chocolate teapot)
Posts: 826
Originally Posted by flashware View Post
Was there when I did mine on Monday. Utter frustration is the best way to describe the process. Gave up on the image route and ended up scanning my paper copy using the webcam. Didn't work for Mrs FW though so we saved her app, then finished it on the phone and scanned the paper copy using the phone cam....

Thats odd as I did my & wifes PLF on Monday morning & weren't asked for anything, only a declaration we had been vaccinated
DorsetKnob is offline  
Old Sep 15, 21, 3:01 am
  #10967  
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Kazakhstan
Programs: BA Gold, AirAstana Silver (much use as chocolate teapot)
Posts: 826
Originally Posted by smangalam View Post
Thanks DorsetKnob. Which provider do you use? By the way, Im booked with Express Test at T5 for my first Day 2. Do they also operate at St. Pancras?
I use a service local to me in Dorset, no pfaffing around posting stuff, drive up get it done. Not cheapest, but when you actually had to quarantine gave me an excuse to get out!
DorsetKnob is offline  
Old Sep 15, 21, 5:27 am
  #10968  
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Luxembourg, Portugal & UK
Posts: 27
Originally Posted by Dan1113 View Post
Very long shot, but, just wondering if anyone has come across an EU digital pass app that scans and accepts a Brazilian covid qr code (so that a Brazilian could use that as vaccination proof and enter the UK quarantine free after 10 days in the EU). Thanks in case anyone has any tips!
It has been reported earlier in the week that Portugal and Brazil are currently working on a solution for mutual recognition. However, it seems that due to various concerns including system architecture and security issues which have to be addressed at the EU level, I doubt a solution that would enable the Brazilian certificate to be incorporated within the EU Digital Covid Certificate, via Portugal SNS, is imminent.

https://www.theportugalnews.com/news...rticates/62318
Citizen-Kane is offline  
Old Sep 15, 21, 6:01 am
  #10969  
 
Join Date: Apr 2020
Programs: British Airways Executive Club
Posts: 45
Originally Posted by paulaf View Post
So there's some changes to the PLF asking you to upload your vaccination certificate or scan its QR code, can't get it to work, either says the file is too small or it won't scan it as it has 2 QR codes, they all will won't they if you've had 2 doses? It doesn't give me the option of trying to scan 1 QR code so it says I have to show it at the border so no e-gates for me I presume?
I filled this out manually, I didnt scan it.
NeedBAHelperDesperately is offline  
Old Sep 15, 21, 6:10 am
  #10970  
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: York, UK
Programs: BAEC Gold, Honors Diamond
Posts: 1,081
Silly question, but I'm assuming private PCRs don't get the same priority off RM as NHS ones do?
NHS one was delivered in 2 hrs, private (day 2) test has been sat at Leeds Mail centre since 9pm last night. It's only going to Bradford and was tracked 24 so was expecting it to be delivered earlier today!
S_W_S is offline  
Old Sep 15, 21, 6:20 am
  #10971  
Moderator, Iberia Airlines, Airport Lounges, and Ambassador, British Airways Executive Club
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Programs: BA Lifetime Gold; Flying Blue Life Platinum; LH Sen.; Hilton Diamond; Kemal Kebabs Prized Customer
Posts: 56,663
Originally Posted by S_W_S View Post
Silly question, but I'm assuming private PCRs don't get the same priority off RM as NHS ones do?
NHS one was delivered in 2 hrs, private (day 2) test has been sat at Leeds Mail centre since 9pm last night. It's only going to Bradford and was tracked 24 so was expecting it to be delivered earlier today!
Correct. The RM is being paid a wadge of money to prioritise NHST&T items, both to patients and back to the labs, effectively they have a seven day week service with next day delivery. Private tests are still supposed to be prioritised but the RM is also suffering from problems with a lack of drivers and staff isolating from COVID. The Priority Boxes go into a separate bag and are supposed to be opened before other mail, but this is where delays can creep in. I know Leeds / Bradford currently has more people isolating in England than almost anywhere else.
S_W_S likes this.
corporate-wage-slave is offline  
Old Sep 15, 21, 10:12 am
  #10972  
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: York, UK
Programs: BAEC Gold, Honors Diamond
Posts: 1,081
Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave View Post
Correct. The RM is being paid a wadge of money to prioritise NHST&T items, both to patients and back to the labs, effectively they have a seven day week service with next day delivery. Private tests are still supposed to be prioritised but the RM is also suffering from problems with a lack of drivers and staff isolating from COVID. The Priority Boxes go into a separate bag and are supposed to be opened before other mail, but this is where delays can creep in. I know Leeds / Bradford currently has more people isolating in England than almost anywhere else.
Thanks CWS, I just checked the tracking again and it showed as delivered at 11:30 this morning (so maybe just slow at updating earlier).

It just threw me off a bit as the NHS test the other week was tracked as arriving at York at 18:30 (30 mins after last collection time), then delivered in Leeds at 20:30. The private test wasn't tracked until Leeds at 21:10, which given the same post box was used seemed odd. But if they have alot of drivers off maybe everything is going straight to Leeds rather than via York first.
S_W_S is offline  
Old Sep 15, 21, 12:29 pm
  #10973  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 4,421
Originally Posted by S_W_S View Post
Silly question, but I'm assuming private PCRs don't get the same priority off RM as NHS ones do?
NHS one was delivered in 2 hrs, private (day 2) test has been sat at Leeds Mail centre since 9pm last night. It's only going to Bradford and was tracked 24 so was expecting it to be delivered earlier today!
Originally Posted by S_W_S View Post
Thanks CWS, I just checked the tracking again and it showed as delivered at 11:30 this morning (so maybe just slow at updating earlier).

It just threw me off a bit as the NHS test the other week was tracked as arriving at York at 18:30 (30 mins after last collection time), then delivered in Leeds at 20:30. The private test wasn't tracked until Leeds at 21:10, which given the same post box was used seemed odd. But if they have alot of drivers off maybe everything is going straight to Leeds rather than via York first.
Must have gone to the same place as ours

We did the test as soon as we got home and dropped it in the priority post box at 6.30, just ahead of the 6.45 cut off. Arrived around the same time as yours in the same city.
flashware is offline  
Old Sep 16, 21, 1:32 am
  #10974  
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 904
Increasing number of reports that UK will drop the pre departure test and Day 2 PCR test for fully vaccinated travellers.

Not confirmed but that would be excellent news.
seanp7, LETTERBOY and HB7 like this.
CatchThePigeon is offline  
Old Sep 16, 21, 1:59 am
  #10975  
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 49
Originally Posted by CatchThePigeon View Post
Increasing number of reports that UK will drop the pre departure test and Day 2 PCR test for fully vaccinated travellers.

Not confirmed but that would be excellent news.
Great news, but to go from one of the most stringent on travel testing to the least would be surprising.

It definitely feels like the PLF is here to stay longterm - they must gather so much information about all of us they'd be terrified to lose it.
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zarp is offline  
Old Sep 16, 21, 2:22 am
  #10976  
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Kazakhstan
Programs: BA Gold, AirAstana Silver (much use as chocolate teapot)
Posts: 826
Originally Posted by zarp View Post
Great news, but to go from one of the most stringent on travel testing to the least would be surprising.

It definitely feels like the PLF is here to stay longterm - they must gather so much information about all of us they'd be terrified to lose it.
I don;t think they gather anything they wouldnt already have.
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DorsetKnob is offline  
Old Sep 16, 21, 6:49 am
  #10977  
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 2,516
Are we still expecting an announcement today?
DaveS likes this.
Dan1113 is offline  
Old Sep 16, 21, 8:13 am
  #10978  
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: San Marcos, CA
Programs: Bonvoy Lifetime Platinum ; Hilton Gold; Hertz 5*, Delta DM. Hyatt Platinum, Amtrak Select
Posts: 203
Thought I would give a quick recap of my experience in case it applies to anyone here. I was stressed leading up to my trip but it wasn't too bad.

Last Tues - Flew LAX to LHR on Virgin, then transited to CPH the same day. Took an Abbott test via eMed beforehand and uploaded to Virgin's site and filled out the PLF but checked the option that said I was transiting. Got to LAX, checked in...no record of the upload but I had printed copies of everything. Virgin rep gave my docs maybe 4 seconds of review and I was good to go. I highly recommend having everything printed. I have the Navica app and it worked fine, but I would just print. I did not go through UK immigration and therefore the countdown for Day 2 testing did not begin.

Flew to CPH Wed afternoon on BA. No covid test or vaccine check before boarding. When I got to CPH I cleared immigration quickly by just showing my passport and hard copy CDC vaccine card. People were showing a digital version (americans by the sound the accent) and it worked, but there was definitely some swiping and searching...I would recommend just bringing the card.

Took another eMed Abbott test on Wed night to cover my return to the UK on Friday and filled out another PLF form, this time stating I was staying in the UK. Flew CPH to LGW on Norwegian. Upon check in at CPH the Norwegian rep checked passport, vax card and PLF (again, printed them all out). Another very cursory review...name, rank serial number. LGW immigration had a line but not terrible, agent checked my passport asked my why I was there (I said "business" and he laughed and just said "couldn't they have just used Zoom?") and that was it...no vax card, no PLF, no negative test checks.

Took another eMed Abbott test Sunday (same day as my Day 2 PCR test but was concerned based on feedback i had read that I couldn't rely on the timing of the Day 2 test results, more on that below). Uploaded negative test results to Virgin's site which this time was recognized when I checked in so I only needed to show my passport and I was good to go. Flew LHR to LAX yesterday, used the Nexus terminal just as always and cleared immigration in 30 seconds.

Day 2 test - this may be moot as it sounded like the requirement was going to be dropped but this was my experience. I ordered an Azova test which was supposed to be delivered the week before I left. It did not show up, Azova customer service was useless (they pointed to UPS) and of course it showed up three hours after I left for the airport. Do not bother with them. I ordered a backup to be delivered to my hotel in London via Randox and it was waiting for me when I got there. Took the test, dropped the sample at one of the many Randox boxes and had the results mid-morning the next day. As an aside, everyone in the UK HATES this process and it is seen as nothing more than a money grab by FOB (friends of Boris).

Overall it was pretty simple. Just overdo your paperwork and take your covid tests and it won't be very stressful at all.
tfly212 is offline  
Old Sep 16, 21, 8:29 am
  #10979  
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Kent, UK
Programs: M&S Elite+
Posts: 3,099
Originally Posted by Dan1113 View Post
Are we still expecting an announcement today?
I did think that too. Shapps remains in his position so we may be in luck with an announcement/tweet. There are some other big policy announcements which need to be put out here first, such as the "electric chargepoint on an offshore wind turbine" (I kid you not) and "continuous glucose monitoring for HGV and bus drivers" which it appears will solve the truck driver shortage.
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Last edited by DaveS; Sep 16, 21 at 8:43 am
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Old Sep 16, 21, 8:53 am
  #10980  
 
Join Date: May 2021
Location: YOW
Programs: BAEC
Posts: 83
Originally Posted by Dan1113 View Post
Are we still expecting an announcement today?
According to Birmingham Live and the Independent, a Downing St. spokesperson says there will be an announcement tomorrow. But no indication if it will be colour adjustments or the whole new plan.
This Birmingham site looks worth following

https://www.birminghammail.co.uk/tra...nment-21573861

https://www.independent.co.uk/travel...-b1920456.html

Last edited by Baygirl2017; Sep 16, 21 at 9:37 am
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