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What happens if you test positive abroad

What happens if you test positive abroad

Old Apr 27, 22, 6:48 pm
  #31  
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From my experience, it could be wise to get a documented positive test ASAP, as detailed below.

Originally Posted by Adelphos View Post
Seems like best practice abroad is
1) If you become symptomatic, self test as soon as possible, get in contact with US-based doctors
2) If you are not symptomatic, self test before getting tested locally to ensure you are negative so you don't face quarantine measures by local authorities if they find a negative test
3) Have access to a US doctor (via telemedicine) who will be willing to provide a certificate of recovery a few days after testing positive
My wife tested positive with a online-proctored iHealth test in France the day before our scheduled flight home. I had already tested negative that day with iHealth, but tested positive 2 days later with non-proctored self-test. We stayed in our hotel for an additional 13 days until we both tested negative (my wife used another iHealth proctored test, and I went to a local pharmacy) - then flew back home the next day.

I originally hoped we would test negative in about a week, and was not even aware of the Certificate of Recovery exception. After my wife's positive test, we tested regularly with self-tests, but it wasn't until 5-6 days after her 1st positive test that I began to consider the CoR method, and United's policies. We were both able to get letters of recovery from our US doctors (sent electronically) 10 days after symptoms commenced (they did not request a copy of our positive tests). HOWEVER, United Airlines (and perhaps others - I believe Delta is more lenient) will not allow you to fly less than 11 days after your 1st positive DOCUMENTED test (and that test can't be more than 90 days before). After reading about the 11-day requirement I went to the pharmacy and paid for what I knew would be a positive result. This started the clock for United, so if you consider my wife's 1st positive as day zero; my documented positive was on day 7, and United would let me fly home on day 18 if I could not produce a documented negative test earlier. My wife could fly on day 11. Since we both were able to test negative, we flew home on day 14. So my wife really didn't need to test on day 13, but I was getting worried about the CoR process (and her CoR was not as detailed as mine - it did not include birth date, etc.)

I believe United's policy is more restrictive than the CDC's requirements. When I first researched United's requirements on United.com, what I read did not require a documented positive test 11 days prior, but said something like "11 days after testing positive or commencement of symptoms". I later noted the more restrictive requirement in the "Travel Ready Center". So it appears that United has conflicting information in different website sections - but I'm not going to try to document that here. It's been mentioned on FT in at least 1 UA thread.

The day before our flight, I uploaded my CoR and positive test, and was denied clearance due to the date of the test. So I then went to the pharmacy and luckily was able to get a negative test, uploaded it, and all was good.

I hope this helps someone, as it would have helped me.
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Old Apr 27, 22, 8:31 pm
  #32  
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Originally Posted by SFOTerry View Post
From my experience, it could be wise to get a documented positive test ASAP, as detailed below.



My wife tested positive with a online-proctored iHealth test in France the day before our scheduled flight home. I had already tested negative that day with iHealth, but tested positive 2 days later with non-proctored self-test. We stayed in our hotel for an additional 13 days until we both tested negative (my wife used another iHealth proctored test, and I went to a local pharmacy) - then flew back home the next day.

I originally hoped we would test negative in about a week, and was not even aware of the Certificate of Recovery exception. After my wife's positive test, we tested regularly with self-tests, but it wasn't until 5-6 days after her 1st positive test that I began to consider the CoR method, and United's policies. We were both able to get letters of recovery from our US doctors (sent electronically) 10 days after symptoms commenced (they did not request a copy of our positive tests). HOWEVER, United Airlines (and perhaps others - I believe Delta is more lenient) will not allow you to fly less than 11 days after your 1st positive DOCUMENTED test (and that test can't be more than 90 days before). After reading about the 11-day requirement I went to the pharmacy and paid for what I knew would be a positive result. This started the clock for United, so if you consider my wife's 1st positive as day zero; my documented positive was on day 7, and United would let me fly home on day 18 if I could not produce a documented negative test earlier. My wife could fly on day 11. Since we both were able to test negative, we flew home on day 14. So my wife really didn't need to test on day 13, but I was getting worried about the CoR process (and her CoR was not as detailed as mine - it did not include birth date, etc.)

I believe United's policy is more restrictive than the CDC's requirements. When I first researched United's requirements on United.com, what I read did not require a documented positive test 11 days prior, but said something like "11 days after testing positive or commencement of symptoms". I later noted the more restrictive requirement in the "Travel Ready Center". So it appears that United has conflicting information in different website sections - but I'm not going to try to document that here. It's been mentioned on FT in at least 1 UA thread.

The day before our flight, I uploaded my CoR and positive test, and was denied clearance due to the date of the test. So I then went to the pharmacy and luckily was able to get a negative test, uploaded it, and all was good.

I hope this helps someone, as it would have helped me.
Thanks, this kind of first-hand experience is extremely helpful.

We're flying the new Icelandic LCC "Play Airlines", so who knows what their policy would be. Hopefully, because they're Icelandic and the Icelandic government seems to be a lot less uptight about covid travel restrictions, their policy will be on the more lenient side.
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Old Apr 28, 22, 6:22 am
  #33  
 
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Originally Posted by worldiswide View Post
Interested in any data from folks who have returned from the UK in this situation. Are there resources to contact for covid recovery documentation within the UK?
Yes, though it costs. Private PCR test from 35-50 GBP. Online recovery certificates based on the PCR test results from 50+ GPB.

Edit - simplytestme are only £29 for a recovery certificate I've seen on another thread (not a recommendation)
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Last edited by bluemoon68; Apr 28, 22 at 10:55 am
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Old Apr 28, 22, 6:50 am
  #34  
 
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Originally Posted by snic View Post
We're flying the new Icelandic LCC "Play Airlines", so who knows what their policy would be. Hopefully, because they're Icelandic and the Icelandic government seems to be a lot less uptight about covid travel restrictions, their policy will be on the more lenient side.
I don't see any European airline going more strict on this than what's required by law. Recovery certificate is accepted according to the executive order so Play will accept it, not caring when was your positive test taken (they probably won't ask to see it anyway).

The question is whether you can get that certificate issued.
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Old Apr 28, 22, 7:07 am
  #35  
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Originally Posted by the810 View Post
I don't see any European airline going more strict on this than what's required by law. Recovery certificate is accepted according to the executive order so Play will accept it, not caring when was your positive test taken (they probably won't ask to see it anyway).

The question is whether you can get that certificate issued.
One thing that seems pretty clear is that Iceland's response to covid has been extremely well organized. Their policies are clearly spelled out, and they seem to have devoted resources to dealing with visitors' needs (e.g., rapid testing available near the airport; covid tests free for everyone who has symptoms, whether a resident of Iceland or not, etc). The government even has a web page with a link to "Certificates" that explains how Icelanders can download certificates of covid infection, and gives an email address for visitors to use. So I suspect that it would be fairly easy to get in touch with a clinic that would be familiar with issuing a recovery certificate sufficient to board a plane to the US. Then it's just a matter of finding an affordable place to stay for the number of days they specify, and hoping no symptoms develop.
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Old Apr 28, 22, 9:56 am
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Originally Posted by Adelphos View Post
Seems like best practice abroad is

1) If you become symptomatic, self test as soon as possible, get in contact with US-based doctors
2) If you are not symptomatic, self test before getting tested locally to ensure you are negative so you don't face quarantine measures by local authorities if they find a negative test
3) Have access to a US doctor (via telemedicine) who will be willing to provide a certificate of recovery a few days after testing positive
Yes, this is good. Bring a couple of the self-tests with you on any trip. I did this upon traveling in in the UK and Italy (just returned yesterday). Using an inexpensive self-test with no reporting requirement brings the stress level way down, and allows you to work out your options should you test positive.

I also agree with the other earlier post that you can mitigate your risks to some degree, like wearing a mask in crowded tourist places and using hand sanitizer. Is it really such a hardship?

So glad to have been able to travel to Europe over the past few weeks, and well-worth the extra hassle. Yes, I also have the option to fly to Florida, as one poster suggested, but these comparisons are like apples and oranges
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Old Apr 29, 22, 10:18 am
  #37  
 
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If in doubt keep testing! I have a friend flying back to DFW from LHR. He tested Positive prior to his flight and received the "no fly" result in the DAM health app. He waited a few hours and tried again and it was negative so go figure..........
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Old Apr 29, 22, 12:34 pm
  #38  
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By chance, was the first test antigen and the second PCR? Otherwise, could it be that two labs have different standards for what's considered to be a positive result?
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Old Apr 30, 22, 4:33 pm
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Lesson I'm getting from this thread: buy COVID Travel Insurance.
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Old May 1, 22, 12:02 pm
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Originally Posted by Christine Sinclair View Post
Lesson I'm getting from this thread: buy COVID Travel Insurance.
Yes - but be EXTREMELY careful and read the fine print with an eagle eye, several times, before you buy. And compare several different policies. For example, one policy I was about to buy said it covered expenses related to quarantine (extra hotel expenses, rearranging your flights). It had an extremely narrow definition of quarantine; basically, a government official or doctor would have to order you not to leave your lodging. A different policy, which I ended up buying, said that it would pay for these expenses if a doctor tells you not to travel. That would occur in a much broader set of circumstances, probably including testing positive before your return flight.
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Old May 1, 22, 6:01 pm
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Originally Posted by snic View Post
Yes - but be EXTREMELY careful and read the fine print with an eagle eye, several times, before you buy. And compare several different policies. For example, one policy I was about to buy said it covered expenses related to quarantine (extra hotel expenses, rearranging your flights). It had an extremely narrow definition of quarantine; basically, a government official or doctor would have to order you not to leave your lodging. A different policy, which I ended up buying, said that it would pay for these expenses if a doctor tells you not to travel. That would occur in a much broader set of circumstances, probably including testing positive before your return flight.
Which insurance did you buy? Looking for recommendations
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Old May 1, 22, 8:15 pm
  #42  
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Originally Posted by Synapseturquoise View Post
Which insurance did you buy? Looking for recommendations
"Tin Leg Luxury" from squaremouth.com
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Old May 9, 22, 8:54 pm
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Originally Posted by snic View Post
Yes - but be EXTREMELY careful and read the fine print with an eagle eye, several times, before you buy. And compare several different policies. For example, one policy I was about to buy said it covered expenses related to quarantine (extra hotel expenses, rearranging your flights). It had an extremely narrow definition of quarantine; basically, a government official or doctor would have to order you not to leave your lodging. A different policy, which I ended up buying, said that it would pay for these expenses if a doctor tells you not to travel. That would occur in a much broader set of circumstances, probably including testing positive before your return flight.
Thanks for this. I was also about to buy a policy with travel delay coverage, but as you noted, it required a doctor's order or a government authorities' order to quarantine. In the event of the looser definition, I'm trying to think of how this would go. Let's say that I bring a self-test with me, and before I go take the official test, I use it and discover I'm positive. Do I then try to find a doctor who can give me a note that tells me to isolate and not travel? How do I find this doctor? Do I contact the concierge of my hotel (presuming there is one) and ask for a doctor? Perhaps, use the service provided by the insurance company for finding medical assistance? Would a doctor even want to see me and for what reason?

And, do I still need to take an "official" test before I contact the doctor? I would presume that this wouldn't be necessary and needlessly exposes others.
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Old May 9, 22, 9:09 pm
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Originally Posted by escog View Post
Thanks for this. I was also about to buy a policy with travel delay coverage, but as you noted, it required a doctor's order or a government authorities' order to quarantine. In the event of the looser definition, I'm trying to think of how this would go. Let's say that I bring a self-test with me, and before I go take the official test, I use it and discover I'm positive. Do I then try to find a doctor who can give me a note that tells me to isolate and not travel? How do I find this doctor? Do I contact the concierge of my hotel (presuming there is one) and ask for a doctor? Perhaps, use the service provided by the insurance company for finding medical assistance? Would a doctor even want to see me and for what reason?

And, do I still need to take an "official" test before I contact the doctor? I would presume that this wouldn't be necessary and needlessly exposes others.
You absolutely do need to take an official test because what you will need to be allowed to travel back to the US is (a) documentation of a positive test, and (b) doctor or health official's letter stating you have recovered. Which apparently must be (c) 10 days after your positive test, assuming you don't develop symptoms. This is all clearly spelled out here.

To file a travel insurance claim, you would also need a doctor to officially tell you not to travel. Your personal doctor might be willing to do that if you send him/her your official positive test result. It's possible that an online service like the one I linked to above would also do it for you.
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Old May 10, 22, 2:44 pm
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Originally Posted by snic View Post
You absolutely do need to take an official test because what you will need to be allowed to travel back to the US is (a) documentation of a positive test, and (b) doctor or health official's letter stating you have recovered. Which apparently must be (c) 10 days after your positive test, assuming you don't develop symptoms. This is all clearly spelled out here.

To file a travel insurance claim, you would also need a doctor to officially tell you not to travel. Your personal doctor might be willing to do that if you send him/her your official positive test result. It's possible that an online service like the one I linked to above would also do it for you.
Thanks. So, the workflow for an asymptomatic traveler should be:

1. If you are not symptomatic, self test before getting tested locally to start planning your response in case of a positive result.
2. If self-test is positive, get a test with a documented result to start the clock on recovery.
  • Make arrangements for accommodations. (Hopefully covered by travel insurance)
  • Get a doctorís note (via telemedicine?) stating that you must isolate and cannot travel. (for insurance claim)
  • Contact travel insurance.
  • Have access to a US doctor (via telemedicine) who will be willing to provide a certificate of recovery 10 days (according to CDC guidelines) after testing positive (if asymptomatic).
3. Isolate for a minimum of 5 days. After 5 days with no symptoms, no need to isolate, but must mask. Still may not travel until 10 days without symptoms. (According to CDC recommendations.)
4. Start daily, documented tests at Day 7 (earlier?) until you get a negative result.
5. If you donít get a negative result by 10 days, acquire a certificate of recovery (if asymptomatic).
6. Contact airline to rebook flight. Use negative test result or certificate of recovery as part of attestation.

CDC Attestation for Travel:
https://www.cdc.gov/quarantine/pdf/A...4-4-2022-p.pdf

CDC Order:
https://www.cdc.gov/quarantine/pdf/A...-02-2021-p.pdf

Recommendations for Healthcare Professionals to end isolation (i.e. guidelines for a doctor to give you a certificate of recovery):
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019...isolation.html
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