Covid-19 Testing Requirements For Our Top Visited Countries

Click below for more details on any of our favourite destinations - these were our top ten destinations at the end of 2020.


Spain

Dubai (UAE)

Portugal

Turkey

USA

Netherlands

Ireland

Greece

Italy

France


Go to Covid testing for travel FAQs


Buy a Covid test from our partners



Spain & Canary Islands


Borders are closed to UK visitors

Negative PCR or LAMP covid test from 72 hours before arrival

Specialist travel insurance for a trip to mainland Spain

Quarantine for 10 days if returning from Spain


PCR test
Results returned between 24 and 96 hours dependant on test type

Test at airport

Available at Manchester, Stansted, East Midlands, Luton and London City

Test at Boots

Available at selected stores

Lamp test
Results are available within 90 minutes.

Test at airport

Available at Manchester, Stansted, East Midlands, Luton and London City


What are the Covid testing requirements for Spain?


Spain is currently closed to UK visitors. When it reopens, for most third-country visitors, before your flight you must get a PCR or LAMP test for Covid-19, this must be (at maximum) 72 hours before your arrival in Spain. The inclusion of the LAMP test as an option was announced and confirmed by Spain's Ministry of Health on 10th December.


What is the quarantine policy for Spain?


If you are returning from mainland Spain or the Balearics you must self-isolate for 10 days. The Canary Islands will be removed from the travel corridor from 12th December so visitors returning thereafter will also need to self-isolate.


What are the health check requirements for Spain?


You must complete and sign an online health form within 48 hours prior to your arrival - this includes contact information. You must provide proof of a negative PCR covid test and there may be temperature checks and a visual health assessment on your arrival.


What if I present symptoms of Covid when I get to Spain?


"Anyone who presents symptoms or fails to meet one of the above requirements will be required to undergo a test on arrival and will be obliged to observe the COVID-19 protocols in place as determined by the local authorities of your destination in Spain."

Dubai (UAE)


Borders open to UK visitors

No quarantine on arrival unless you test positive

Negative PCR test from 96 hours before arrival or be tested on arrival

Quarantine on return to UK


PCR test
Results returned between 24 and 96 hours dependant on test type

Test at airport

Available at Manchester, Stansted, East Midlands, Luton and London City

Test at Boots

Available at selected stores


What are the Covid testing requirements for Dubai?


Before your flight you must get a PCR test for Covid-19, this must be (at maximum) 96 hours before your arrival in Dubai. If you do not provide a negative test you will be tested at the airport and risk quarantine if you test positive (airport testing is not an available option for the rest of UAE).


What is the quarantine policy for Dubai?


There is no need to quarantine on your arrival in Dubai. If you test positive at the airport then you will be required to self-isolate in a government led facility, a hospital, your hotel or privately arranged accommodation.


What are the health check requirements for Dubai?


You must complete and print a Health Declaration Form and a Quarantine Form ready to be handed to airport staff on arrival. You must also register on the COVID-19 DXB app.

Dubai Covid Tracking App

(Image credit: Apple App Store)



What are the entry requirements for the United Arab Emirates other than Dubai?


Some British Nationals are being allowed to return to the UAE based on entry criteria. You have have a PCR test within 48 hours prior to arrival and arrivals to Abu Dhabi must self-isolate for 14 days.

Portugal


Borders are closed to UK visitors

Negative PCR covid test from 72 hours before arrival

Temperature check on arrival

PCR testing on arrival upon failed health screening

Specialist travel insurance for a trip to mainland Portugal

Quarantine for 10 days if returning from mainland Portugal


What are the Covid testing requirements for Portugal?


Portugal is currently closed to UK holidaymakers. Visitors are required to provide a negative PCR covid test on arrival. You may have to take a further PCR test if you fail the health screening process.


What is the quarantine policy for Portugal?


There is no need to quarantine on arrival in Portugal. Travellers returning from mainland Portugal to the UK must self-isolate for 10 days. Madeira and the Azores are on the travel corridor therefore there is no need to self-isolate on your return - although in practice, at time of writing, there are no direct flights between the UK and the Azores so you'd have to quarantine on your return because you'd caught a connecting flight somewhere without a travel corridor.


What are the health check requirements for Portugal?


You may undergo temperature checks and health screening on arrival.
If you are arriving in Madeira or Porto Santo you must complete a health questionnaire before arrival. If you are arriving in the Azores you must complete a passenger questionnaire before arrival.


What if I present symptoms of Covid when I get to Portugal?


"You may be required to take a COVID-19 test and to self-isolate at your accommodation until you receive a negative test result."

Turkey


Borders are closed to UK visitors

Negative PCR covid test from 72 hours before arrival

Quarantine for 14 days on arrival from the UK

Temperature check on arrival

PCR testing on arrival upon failed health screening

Specialist travel insurance required

Quarantine for 10 days on return


What are the Covid testing requirements for Turkey?


The Turkish border is closed to UK visitors. Visitors are required to provide a negative PCR covid test on arrival in Turkey.


What is the quarantine policy for Turkey?


If you arrive in Turkey from the UK you must quarantine for 14 days. You must self-isolate for 10 days on your return to the UK.


What are the health check requirements for Turkey?


You must complete a passenger locator form before your arrival in Turkey. All arrivals are subject to temperature checks and a health assessment - any passengers who fail this will undergo additional PCR tests.


What if I present symptoms of Covid when I get to Turkey?


Any passengers who present symptoms on arrival will be subject to a PCR test - if this comes back positive "you will be provided with medical treatment at a facility determined by the Ministry of Health or, if preferred, at a private medical facility in Turkey."

USA


Borders are closed to UK citizens


Can I tavel to the USA?


British nationals are not able to enter the USA at the current time - if you are a US citizen, resident of USA or specified close family member you are exempt. Those arriving in the USA are advised to 'stay at home' as much as possible for 14 days after arrival - unless you are arriving in DC whereby you must self-isolate for 14 days.

Netherlands


Borders are closed to UK visitors

Negative PCR covid test from 72 hours before arrival

Quarantine for 10 days on arrival

Specialist travel insurance required

Quarantine for 10 days on return


What are the Covid testing requirements for the Netherlands?


The Netherlands is closed to non-essential visits from the UK. Visitors are required to provide a negative PCR covid test on their arrival in the Netherlands.


What is the quarantine policy for the Netherlands?


You are required to self-isolate for 10 days on arrival in the Netherlands. You must also self-isolate for 10 days on your return to the UK.


What are the health check requirements for the Netherlands?


You must complete a health screening form before arrival in the Netherlands.

Ireland


Borders are closed to UK visitors

Restrict movement for 14 days upon arrival


What are the Covid testing requirements for Ireland?


Visitors are not required to provide a negative PCR covid test on arrival in Ireland. You may shorten your quarantine period by obtaining a PCR test 5 days after your arrival - this must be booked in advance of travel.


What is the quarantine policy for Ireland?


You are required to 'restrict your movements' for 14 days upon arrival in Ireland - visitors from Northern Ireland are exempt. You can reduce the quarantine period by getting tested 5 days after your arrival (see above).


What are the health check requirements for Ireland?


You must complete a passenger locator form before your arrival in Ireland.

Greece


Borders open to UK visitors

Quarantine for 7 days on arrival from the UK

Negative PCR covid test from 72 hours before arrival

Specialist travel insurance may be required (Corfu, Crete, Kos, Rhodes, Zakynthos are exempt)

Quarantine for 10 days on return (unless returning from Corfu, Crete, Kos, Rhodes, Zakynthos)


PCR test
Results returned between 24 and 96 hours dependant on test type

Test at airport

Available at Manchester, Stansted, East Midlands, Luton and London City

Test at Boots

Available at selected stores


What are the Covid testing requirements for Greece?


Before your flight you must get a PCR test for Covid-19, this must be (at maximum) 72 hours before your arrival in Greece. You will also be required to take an additional rapid PCR test on arrival in Greece and quarantione for 7 days until the results come back.


What is the quarantine policy for Greece?


You must quarantine for 10 days on your return to UK - unless you are returning from Corfu, Crete, Kos, Rhodes or Zakynthos.


What are the health check requirements for Greece?


You must complete a passenger locator form before your arrival. You may be subject to PCR test on arrival (see above).

Italy


Borders are closed to UK visitors

No quarantine on arrival unless you test positive

Negative PCR covid test from 48 hours before arrival

Specialist travel insurance required

Quarantine for 10 days on return to UK


PCR test
Results returned between 24 and 96 hours dependant on test type

Test at airport

Available at Manchester, Stansted, East Midlands, Luton and London City

Test at Boots

Available at selected stores


What are the Covid testing requirements for Italy?


Before your flight you must get a PCR test for Covid-19, this must be (at maximum) 72 hours before your arrival in Italy. Alternatively can take a free Covid-19 test at the airport when you arrive - you will have to self-isolate until you receive the results. At some airports rapid testing is available - you will have results within an hour.


What is the quarantine policy for Italy?


There is no need to quarantine on your arrival in Italy if you provide a negative PCR covid test. If you take the airport testing route you will have to self-isolate until you get your results. If you test positive "you will be quarantined until you test negative. Your quarantine time could last from approximately 10 to 21 days, so you should be prepared in case you test positive."


What are the health check requirements for Italy?


There are no health checks on arrival if you provide a negative PCR test. You must call the Covid-19 helpline for the region you are travelling to to inform them of your visit.

France


Borders are closed to UK visitors

Quarantine for 14 days on arrival

After December 15th - negative PCR test from 72 hours before arrival

Specialist travel insurance required

Quarantine for 10 days on return to UK


PCR test
Results returned between 24 and 96 hours dependant on test type

Test at airport

Available at Manchester, Stansted, East Midlands, Luton and London City

Test at Boots

Available at selected stores


What are the Covid testing requirements for France?


Before December 15th you are not required to provide a negative PCR covid test on entry to France as the country is in lockdown and you must self-isolate on arrival. After December 15th you may provide a negative PCR covid test taken (at max) 72 hours prior to arrival in France. Alternative you can be tested at the airport - results given within 15-30 minutes.


What is the quarantine policy for France?


If you arriving before December 15th you must self-isolate for 14 days on arrival. After December 15th if you provide a negative PCR test or are tested at the airport you do not need to self-isolate. You must self-isolate for 10 days on return to the UK.

Travel Insurance | Non-essential Travel

Holiday Extras offers travel insurance policies for countries that the FCDO currently advises are suitable for non-essential travel (such as holidays). If you are travelling to a country which has an FCO advisory warning you may need a specialist insurance provider. battleface is a provider of flexible insurance plans for travellers going to unconventional locations, including those under government "essential only" travel advisories.


Covid testing for travel FAQs


How long does it take to get Covid-19 test results?


How long for covid test results varies depending on the provider but most private tests will have results back within 48 hours and some even have same-day services available. It's also important to know that NHS testing is NOT suitable for travel purposes.


What is a fit to Fly certificate?


A fit to fly certificate will show that you are well and with no symptoms of Covid-19. Meaning you are a low risk of spreading coronavirus to those on your flight and the country you are visiting.


How do I get a Fit to Fly certificate?


To get a fit to fly certificate for Covid-19 you need to book a test with a private PCR testing company, and test negative for Covid-19. They will then issue you with a letter from a registered GP to state that you are fit and well and are showing no symptoms of Covid-19.


What is the covid-19 test procedure?


The procedure for covid testing will vary depending on which private supplier you use. In general it involves taking a swab of the nose and the back of the throat, which you can either do yourself or get someone to help you.

With private tests you order your test online, usually selecting whether you will drop the test off at a nearby site or return via pre-paid courier. Once the test is delivered you will carry out the test yourself following instructions of your chosen supplier. You then arrange the courier collection and send the test back to the lab. You will then be provided with your test results via email and usually a certificate to fly.


How to get tested for covid-19 in the UK?


If you need to get tested for covid before you travel then you must book a private test and not a NHS test. There are a number of private test providers - but all operate in similar ways. You will order a test online, do the test yourself at home and then send the swab back for your results. Some private testers offer a same day service, but you will pay extra for this and will have to attend in person.


When should I get a Covid test?


Need to know when you should get a Covid test for travel? You need to ensure you plan in advance to make sure you get your covid test within the timeframe requested for the country you are visiting. Most countries state that a negative PCR test must be provided that is no older than 72 hours prior to when you arrive. Some countries allow up to 96 hours. Remeber when booking a private test for travel that you need to factor in postal times, from when you order and for when you return the swab.


Does the Covid-19 test hurt?


No - some people may find it unpleasant or uncomfortable and it may make you gag, but in general you shouldn't feel any pain when doing the test and it is over very quickly.


How long does a covid test take?


A covid test itself only takes a matter of seconds. The turnaround time for private covid tests for travel depend on the service you've selected but most aim to have results within 48 hours of receipt if not sooner.


What is the Test to Release scheme?


As of December 15th travellers returning to England can opt in to the Test and Release scheme at their own expense. The earliest you can be tested is 5 days after arrival, and once you have a negative result you may leave self-isolation. To take part in the scheme you need to:
  • book a test with a private test provider
  • opt into the scheme on the passenger locator form

Covid testing links from our partners


PCR test
Results returned between 24 and 96 hours dependant on test type

Test at airport

Available at Manchester, Stansted, East Midlands, Luton and London City

Test at Boots

Available at selected stores

Lamp test

Test at airport

Available at Manchester, Stansted, East Midlands, Luton and London City

Antigen test

Test at airport

Available at Manchester, Stansted, East Midlands, Luton and London City

Antibody test

Test at airport

Available at Manchester, Stansted, East Midlands, Luton and London City



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