Before you leave for the UK

What coronavirus (COVID-19) testing and quarantine rules you need to follow depends on:

  • whether you qualify as fully vaccinated
  • where you have been in the 10 days before you arrive

Find out what to do if you’re:

You’re a British citizen

You can enter the UK with one of the following identity documents:

  • a passport
  • a Gibraltar identity card

If you’re travelling from Ireland to Northern Ireland

You do not need any documents to enter.

If you’re travelling from Ireland to England, Scotland or Wales

A Border Force officer may ask to see proof of your identity and nationality. You can use any documents that show your identity or nationality, for example:

  • a passport (current or expired)
  • proof that you’ve been given British citizenship - such as a UK citizenship certificate
  • a Gibraltar identity card (current or expired)
  • a copy of your passport or Gibraltar identity card that clearly shows your identity and nationality

You can use more than one document - for example, a driving licence with a citizenship certificate. If you’re using an expired passport or identity card, it must be recent enough that it’s clear that it’s yours.

You’re from the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein

You can enter the UK with one of the following identity documents:

  • a passport
  • an Irish passport card
  • a national identity card issued by an EU country, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein, if you’re eligible to use one

Your identity document should be valid for the whole of your stay.

If you’re travelling with a passport or national identity card, it must be registered on your UK Visas and Immigration account if any of the following are true:

  • you have settled or pre-settled status
  • you used the ‘UK Immigration: ID Check’ app to scan your identity document when applying for a visa

Travelling with a national identity card

You cannot use a national identity card from an EU country, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein to enter the UK unless you:

  • have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme, or Jersey, Guernsey or the Isle of Man’s settlement schemes
  • have an EU Settlement Scheme family permit, or the equivalent from Jersey, Guernsey or the Isle of Man
  • have a Frontier Worker permit
  • are an S2 Healthcare Visitor
  • are a Swiss national and have a Service Provider from Switzerland visa

Check if you need a visa to come to the UK.

If you’re waiting for a decision on your application for settled or pre-settled status

You can still use your EEA or Swiss national identity card to enter the UK if all of the following are true:

  • you’ve applied for settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme, or Jersey, Guernsey or the Isle of Man’s settlement schemes
  • you’ve been issued with confirmation your application is valid
  • you’re not applying as a joining family member

If you have not applied for settled or pre-settled status but are planning to

You must enter the UK with either:

Your family permit or visa could be issued by the UK, Jersey, Guernsey or the Isle of Man.

Check if you need a visa to come to the UK.

If you’re travelling from Ireland to Northern Ireland

You do not need any documents to enter Northern Ireland.

You may need a visa if you’re planning to stay in the UK - for example, to work or study.

If you’re travelling from Ireland to England, Scotland or Wales

A Border Force officer may ask to see proof of your identity and nationality.

If you’re an Irish citizen, you can use any documents that show your identity or nationality. For example:

  • a passport (current or expired)
  • proof that you’ve been given Irish citizenship - such as a certificate of naturalisation
  • an Irish passport card (current or expired)
  • a copy of your passport or Irish passport card that clearly shows your identity and nationality

You can use more than one document - for example, a driving licence with a certificate of naturalisation. If you’re using an expired passport or Irish passport card, it must be recent enough that it’s clear that it’s yours.

If you’re not an Irish citizen, you’ll need to use either a passport or a national identity card, if you’re eligible.

Find out more about travelling to the UK from Ireland, Jersey, Guernsey or the Isle of Man.

You’re from outside the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein

You must have a valid passport to enter the UK. It must be valid for the whole of your stay.

You may also need a visa, depending on which country you’re from.

Check if you need a visa to come to the UK. If you need a visa, you must apply for it before you arrive in the UK.

You may also need a visa if you’re ‘transiting’ or travelling through the UK, for example you’re changing flights at a UK airport.

If you’re travelling from Ireland

You do not need any documents to travel from Ireland to Northern Ireland. You may need a visa if you’re planning to stay in the UK - for example, to work or study.

If you’re travelling from Ireland to England, Scotland or Wales, a Border Force officer may ask to see your passport. It must be valid for the whole of your stay.

Find out more about travelling to the UK from Ireland, Jersey, Guernsey or the Isle of Man.

If you’re travelling from Jersey, Guernsey or the Isle of Man

You only need to show your documents if you’re stopped by a Border Force officer. They may ask to see proof of your:

  • identity
  • permission to come to the UK, Jersey, Guernsey or the Isle of Man, if you need it - for example, a visa, biometric residence permit (BRP) or work permit

You do not have to use a passport, Irish passport card or identity card to prove your identity. You can use other documents instead - for example, a driving licence or armed forces identity card.

Find out more about travelling to the UK from Ireland, Jersey, Guernsey or the Isle of Man.

Travelling with children

You may be asked at the border to prove the relationship between yourself and any children travelling with you, if you do not seem to be the parent, for example if you have a different surname.

You can prove this with:

  • a birth or adoption certificate showing your relationship with the child
  • divorce or marriage certificates if you’re the parent but have a different surname from the child
  • a letter from the child’s parent giving permission for the child to travel with you and providing contact details, if you’re not the parent

Before you board

Your ‘carrier’ (for example airline or transport provider) will check your passport and other travel documents. They’ll send this information electronically to Border Force.

You can ask to see the information about you that’s been sent by carriers.