Important COVID-19: travel is different
To understand the risks in a country, including the latest COVID restrictions (including for entry), follow FCDO Travel Advice.
To prevent new COVID variants from entering the UK, you should not travel to red list countries.
This page reflects the UK government’s understanding of current rules for people travelling on a full ‘British Citizen’ passport, for the most common types of travel.
The authorities in Poland set and enforce entry rules. For further information contact their embassy, high commission or consulate. You may also check with your transport provider or travel company to make sure your passport and travel documents meet their requirements.
If you are travelling to Poland for work, read the guidance on visas and permits as the rules have changed since 1 January 2021.
Entry rules in response to coronavirus (COVID-19)
UK nationals, their spouses and children are included in the list of those who are exempt from entry restrictions related to COVID-19, found on the Polish Border Guards website (in English).
Demonstrating your COVID-19 vaccination status
If you are fully vaccinated with a vaccination approved for use in the EU, you are exempt from quarantine on arrival in Poland, but must present evidence of your COVID-19 vaccination at the border and 14 days must have passed since your final dose.
Poland will accept the UK’s solutions to demonstrate your COVID vaccination status. Your NHS appointment card from vaccination centres is not designed to be used as proof of vaccination and should not be used to demonstrate your vaccine status.
If you enter Poland directly from the United Kingdom (or any other non-EU or non-Schengen country), you must undergo mandatory quarantine. You can leave quarantine after 7 days if you receive a negative antigen or PCR COVID test result, or after 10 days without taking a test.
Compulsory quarantine does not apply if you are fully vaccinated with a vaccination approved for use in the EU and 14 days have passed since your final dose. You must present evidence of your COVID-19 vaccination at the border.
Children up to the age of 12, travelling with fully vaccinated adults, are exempt from the mandatory quarantine upon arrival from the UK, and other non-Schengen countries.
You do not need to self-isolate if you are:
- able to evidence you have in the last 6 months self-isolated or have been hospitalised in hospital due to testing positive for COVID-19;
- fully vaccinated (having received a second dose if necessary) against COVID-19 and produce a certificate of vaccination for a vaccine authorised for use in the EU;
- aircraft crew, crew of a ship or crew of another transport type;
- a public transport driver (of a vehicle able to carry 9 people or more) or a lorry driver;
- a diplomat or family member of;
- a student studying in Poland (including a parent/guardian who crosses the border with them);
- a student or researcher carrying out academic activities;
- legally residing in EU/EEA but transiting Poland;
- participating as a competitor or staff in an international sports competition;
- travelling for professional, official or employment reasons;
- the holder of an air ticket confirming you will leave Poland in less than 24 hours from the time you arrive in Poland
Upon arrival from the UK or another non-EU country you will be registered by Border Guards in the quarantine database if you do not meet one of the exemptions above. Whenever you take a COVID test to be released from quarantine, please make sure the laboratory uses your passport number as a reference number for transmitting the negative test result to the quarantine database. After receiving a negative test from the laboratory you should call helpline (+48) 22 25 00 115 to check that you have been removed from the quarantine list.
If you are travelling to Poland from an internal EU/Schengen country by air you must hold a negative COVID test result issued in the 48 hours prior to arrival into Poland, unless you meet one of the exemptions listed above.
If you are entering Poland by sea or land from an EU/Schengen country, and only visiting Poland, you must have a negative COVID test result issued in the 48 hours before entry. If you are returning to your place of residence or place of stay in Poland, you are obliged to quarantine by reporting to the Chief Sanitary Inspectorate info line (+48 22 25 00 115). If you have a negative COVID test, carried out within 48 hours before you crossed the border, you will be released from quarantine.
In addition, regardless of when and how you arrived in Poland, you must self-isolate if you develop any coronavirus symptoms or if you are notified that you have come into contact with someone who is infected or potentially infected with coronavirus. You must follow the advice of a medical professional who may instruct you to self-isolate for longer than 10 days.
If you live with someone who has tested positive you must self-isolate for at least 7 days (or longer if you also test positive). If you live with someone who must self-isolate but has not tested positive, you are not required to self-isolate (unless you later develop symptoms).
If you suspect you are infected with COVID-19 you must contact the Ministry of Health 24 hour hotline on 800 190 590 and press 6 for English language advice. A list of hospitals equipped to deal with coronavirus patients can be found on the Polish Government website.
If you are self-isolating you must not walk your dog or go shopping. You must not visit your doctor unless instructed to do so by them and you may leave your place of stay if you are required to travel to a COVID-19 testing centre.
Entry to Poland
Entry checks remain in place on land borders with Russia, Ukraine and Belarus. You may also face checks arriving through checkpoints from Germany, Lithuania, Slovakia or Czech Republic with the possibility for queuing traffic at peak times. Some countries also have checks in place on exiting Poland and if you travel to another country from Poland you may need to self-isolate in that country. Check country specific FCDO travel advice for any country that you plan to visit for details.
British nationals do not need a visa to enter Poland or any other EU/EFTA country. Poland now allows direct flights into its territory from a wide number of countries. The list of countries from which flights are not permitted could change at short notice and is updated on the Polish Government website (in Polish).
Regular entry requirements
The rules for travelling or working in European countries changed on 1 January 2021:
you can travel to countries in the Schengen area for up to 90 days in any 180-day period without a visa. This applies if you travel as a tourist, to visit family or friends, to attend business meetings, cultural or sports events, or for short-term studies or training
if you are travelling to Poland and other Schengen countries without a visa, make sure your whole visit is within the 90-day limit. Visits to Schengen countries within the previous 180 days before you travel count towards your 90 days
to stay longer, to work or study, for business travel or for other reasons, you will need to meet the Polish government’s entry requirements. Check with the Polish Embassy what type of visa and/or work permit you may need
if you stay in Poland with a residence permit or long-stay visa, this does not count towards your 90-day visa-free limit
Any time you spent in Poland or other Schengen countries before 1 January 2021 does not count towards your 90-day visa-free limit.
At Polish border control, you may need to use separate lanes from EU, EEA and Swiss citizens when queueing. Your passport may be stamped on entry and exit. You may also need to:
- show a return or onward ticket
- show you have enough money for your stay
Check your passport is valid for travel before you book your trip, and renew your passport if you do not have enough time left on it.
Make sure your passport is:
- valid for at least 3 months after the day you plan to leave Poland, or any other Schengen country
- less than 10 years old
The 3 months you need when leaving a country must be within 10 years of the passport issue date.
If you renewed your current passport before the previous one expired, extra months may have been added to its expiry date. Any extra months on your passport over 10 years may not count towards the minimum 3 months needed.
UK Emergency Travel Documents
You can use a UK Emergency Travel Document to enter, airside transit and exit from Poland.
UK nationals resident in Poland
There are separate requirements for those who are resident in Poland. If you are resident in Poland, you should carry proof of residence as well as your valid passport when you travel. For further information on these requirements, see the Polish Border Guards guidance (in Polish) and our Living in Poland guide.
If you are a Polish passport holder you will be treated as a Polish national while in Poland, even if you hold a passport from another country. If you are a dual Polish-British national you must enter and exit Poland with a Polish passport or Polish national identity card. Check with the Polish Embassy in London if in doubt.