The United Kingdom will remove the remaining Covid-19 international travel restrictions for all passengers as of 4am on Friday, 18 March.
According to the UK departments for transport and health, all Covid-19 travel restrictions from Friday will be lifted, including the passenger locator form (PLF) for arrivals into the UK, as well as all tests for passengers who do not qualify as vaccinated.
This change, therefore, removes the need for unvaccinated passengers to take a pre-departure test and a day 2 post arrival test.
“We wouldn’t keep travel measures in place for any longer than necessary… providing more welcome news and greater freedom for travelers ahead of the Easter holidays,” UK Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said.
All remaining Covid travel measures, including the Passenger Locator Form and tests for all arrivals, will be stood down for travel to the UK from 4am on 18 March.
These changes are possible due to our vaccine rollout and mean greater freedom in time for Easter.
— Rt Hon Grant Shapps MP (@grantshapps) March 14, 2022
In the future, the government’s default approach will be to use the least stringent measures, if appropriate, to minimise the impact on travel as far as possible – given the high personal, economic and international costs border measures can have – and the contingency measures will only be implemented in extreme circumstances.
Given the current state of the pandemic and a move towards global travel volumes returning to normal, the remaining managed hotel quarantine capacity will be fully stood down from the end of March.
Travel and tourism industry welcomes news
On his part, Mark Tanzer, chief executive of ABTA – The Travel Association, said: “With no more tests or forms to fill in on return to the UK, travel is finally starting to return to normal and many more people will have the confidence to go ahead and book a long-awaited holiday”.
World Travel & Tourism Council CEO Julia Simpson also welcomed the “good news” saying: “If we are to compete on a world stage we need to be ‘open for business’’ and not ask people to fill in lengthy forms.”