Guidance overview: Coronavirus (COVID-19): jobs that qualify for travel exemptions

Jobs that qualify for exemptions from quarantine, passenger locator form or COVID testing requirements.

Applies to England



Because of COVID-19 there are rules about what you have to do before you travel to England and after you arrive.

Some people are exempt from some or all COVID-19 travel and entry requirements because of their job.

This guidance lists the jobs that qualify for an exemption and tells you:

  • what you need to do, or not do
  • any conditions you will need to meet or evidence you will need to show

Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland

Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have their own rules and exemptions. Read more about:


This guidance provides a high level summary of the international travel regulations.

Published 22 May 2020
Last updated 22 November 2021 + show all updates
  1. Quarantine requirements no longer apply for non UK residents for air crew, non-UK border officers, bus and coach drivers, drivers of good vehicles, Eurotunnel workers, Eurostar workers, international prison escorts, port workers.

  2. New exemption for pork butchers. Updates to passenger locator form wording for Air Crew, Bus and Coach Drivers, Drivers of Goods Vehicles, Eurostar International Workers, Eurotunnel workers, Port Workers.

  3. Drivers of goods vehicles update - Georgia and Montenegro removed from red list.

  4. Updated international travel to England rules.

  5. New exemptions for film and high-end television production activities, foreign policing, performing arts professionals and seasonal poultry workers.

  6. Updated red list rules for Montenegro for drivers of HGVs.

  7. Updated red list rules for Georgia for drivers of HGVs.

  8. Exemption rules for isolated transport workers.

  9. Exemption for specialist technical port workers supporting ferry services added.

  10. Changes to amber list rules for people who are fully vaccinated under the UK vaccination programme.

  11. Added new exemptions for business directors and in-flight security officers. Updated exemptions for aerospace engineers, overseas elite sportspersons, non-UK border security officials and regular work abroad.

  12. Corrected air crew exemption wording.

  13. Seafarers working on cruise ships no longer exempt from red list requirements.

  14. Green list country requirements and exemptions.

  15. Nurses from red list countries coming to take up NHS employment added to exempt jobs list.

  16. Updated guidance to reflect new COVID-19 testing regimes for UK inbound passengers coming into force on 6 April 2021.

  17. Further details about exemptions for essential and emergency work.

  18. Aviation and maritime crew exempted from red list country quarantine measures. Portugal (including Madeira and the Azores) is no longer on the red list.

  19. Exemptions for completing the declaration form for overseas travel added.

  20. Further details about testing, self-isolation and quarantine rules.

  21. Information about new testing, self-isolation and quarantine rules.

  22. Exemption for new domestic elite sportspersons removed.

  23. Added information on sector exemptions being removed for travel ban countries.

  24. Eight categories of jobs removed from exemptions.

  25. Added information on which jobs will no longer qualify for an exemption.

  26. All arrivals from Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Cape Verde, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Portugal (including Madeira and the Azores), Suriname, Uruguay and Venezuela must self-isolate.

  27. Exemptions for COVID tests to enter England added.

  28. All arrivals from Angola, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe must self-isolate.

  29. Reference to Euratom removed from relevant exemption.

  30. All arrivals from South Africa must self-isolate.

  31. Exemption for essential high-speed rail workers added.

  32. Requirement to self-isolate for 14 days on arrival in UK replaced by 10 day requirement.

  33. Exemptions added for certain senior executives, journalists, newly signed elite sportspersons, performing arts professionals, television production.

  34. Specialist technical workers - subsea telecommunications infrastructure added to list.

  35. Exemption for seasonal poultry workers added.

  36. Exemptions from the requirement to self-isolate removed for arrivals from Denmark.

  37. Offshore oil and gas workers added to exempt jobs list.

  38. Updated exemption for elite sportspersons and added exemptions for National Lottery and advertising productions.

  39. Update to exemption for seafarers.

  40. Healthcare workers removed from list.

  41. Updated to add exemptions for Scotland and information around exemptions for people travelling to the UK from some countries and territories.

  42. Updated travel details and new Coronavirus (COVID-19 guidance for travellers exempt from border rules in England.

  43. Updated to include information on self-isolation in Scotland and Wales.

  44. Exemptions to border rules that have been introduced due to coronavirus (COVID-19) have been extended to Scotland. Some rules in Scotland are different to those England and Northern Ireland.

  45. Updated to show that these exemptions now apply in Northern Ireland. Updated link to isolation rules in Northern Ireland.

  46. Updated to add links to the Public Health passenger locator form

  47. Updated to add information on what those exempt need to show at the border to enter the UK.

  48. First published.