Fully vaccinated travelers and under 18 entering the UK, as of 4am on January 7 will no longer need to take a pre-departure Covid-19 test or self-isolate on arrival, but must continue to take their post-arrival tests, an announcement by the UK departments of health and transport said.
Meanwhile, from 4am on January 9, fully vaccinated travelers and over 5s will be able to take a lateral flow test instead of a PCR on or before day two of their arrival to England. Lateral flow tests for travel can be booked from January 7, and taken upon arrival, by the end of day two.
Anyone who receives a positive result on their lateral flow test must self-isolate immediately and order a NHS PCR test from gov.uk.
“We are removing the temporary, extra testing measures we introduced for Omicron in November, making travel easier and cheaper for fully vaccinated passengers and providing a big boost for the travel industry as we enter the peak new year booking period,” UK Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said on Wednesday.
The UK will proceed with a full review of its international travel measures for 2022 by the end of the month.
Unvaccinated passengers must continue to take a pre-departure test, a PCR test on or before day two and on or after day eight and self-isolate for 10 days.
“Test to release” remains an option for unvaccinated people to shorten their self-isolation period.
Furthermore, proof of vaccination from over 15 further countries and territories will be accepted for entry into England from 4am on January 10: Bhutan, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Fiji, Iraq, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, north of Cyprus, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Solomon Islands, The Gambia and Uzbekistan.
The World Health Organisation has recently granted WHO Emergency Use List (EUL) authorisation to the two versions of the Novavax vaccine named Covovax and Nuvaxovid. Therefore, eligible travelers who have received either version of this vaccine will be recognised for international travel into England from 4am on January 10.
No countries have been added to the UK travel red list, which remains on standby.