Check what you need to do before you travel and when you return to England.
This guide explains how people who live in England can travel abroad and return during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
If you live in another country, you can find out the rules for travelling to England.
Before you travel abroad
Follow these steps:
Check the rules and advice for the country or territory you’re going to.
Find out what you need to do when you return to England.
Book any tests or quarantine hotel packages you need.
1. Check the rules for the country you’re going to
Check foreign travel advice to find out whether:
- the UK government advises against all but essential travel to the places you want to travel to
- the country or territory you want to go to will allow people from England to enter
- you need to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test to enter, or quarantine when you arrive
Foreign travel advice includes rules and warnings based on both COVID and security reasons. It also includes rules for travelling with children during the pandemic.
You should check the rules for all countries or territories you will visit or travel through.
2. Find out what you need to do when you return
Countries and territories are listed as either red, amber or green. The rules for testing and quarantine when you return to England are different for each list.
The rules you must follow depend on which countries or territories you’ve been in or travelled through in the 10 days before you arrive in England, as well as the one you’re travelling from.
For example, if you travel from an amber list country but have been in a red list country in the 10 days before you arrive in England, you must follow the rules for red list countries.
You should not travel to countries or territories on the red list.
3. Book any COVID-19 tests or quarantine hotel packages you need for your return
Returning from a green or amber list country or territory
Find a coronavirus (COVID-19) travel test provider to book the tests you need if you’ve been in a country or territory on the green or amber list in the 10 days before you arrive in England.
If you have been in an amber list country or territory, you may be able to end quarantine early if you arrange and pay for a private COVID-19 test as part of the Test to Release scheme.
Returning from a red list country or territory
Book a quarantine hotel package if you’ve been in a country or territory on the red list in the 10 days before you arrive in England.
When to book
You can book any COVID-19 tests or quarantine packages you need for your return to England before you go abroad or while you’re abroad.
Make sure you leave enough time for any testing kits to be delivered to your address in England.
Countries and territories can move between lists at any time if the COVID-19 situation changes. Sign up for an email alert to let you know if this happens.
Check foreign travel advice while you’re away
You may want to check foreign travel advice to find out any local restrictions you need to follow.
You can sign up for email alerts to tell you if travel advice changes while you’re away.
Before you return
Follow these steps:
Take a COVID-19 test. Normally this will be in the country you’re in. (To board your transport to England, you need proof of a negative result from a test taken in the 3 days before the service departs.)
Complete a passenger locator form. (You can do this any time in the 48 hours before you arrive in England.)
You will need to find a test provider in the country you’re in.
After you return
The rules for testing and quarantine when you arrive back in England depend on which countries or territories you have been in or travelled through in the 10 days before you arrive.
Travelling with children
There are different age limits for children for the different COVID-19 travel tests:
- test to enter another country – check foreign travel advice for the country
- test before travel back to England – children aged 10 and under do not need to take a test
- day 2 and day 8 tests after arrival in England – children aged 4 and under do not need to take a test
- Test to Release test – children of all ages must take the test if adults in household are taking part in the scheme
Ireland, the UK, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man
If you’re travelling to England from within the UK, Ireland, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man, you do not need to:
- complete a passenger locator form
- take any COVID-19 tests
- quarantine on arrival in England
You must not have been outside of the UK, Ireland, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man in the 10 days before you arrive in England.
Check the rules on travel from England if you are:
- travelling to Ireland
- travelling to Northern Ireland
- travelling to Scotland
- travelling to Wales
- travelling to the Isle of man
- travelling to Jersey
- travelling to Guernsey
Exemptions for work, medical or compassionate reasons
You may be exempt from some or all of the travel and entry rules:
- because of your job – check a list of jobs that qualify for travel exemptions
- for medical or compassionate reasons