UK Tightens Covid-19 Testing Rules for Inbound Travelers

UNWTO points tourism towards a greener, inclusive future at General Assembly
December 7, 2021
UK Tightens Covid-19 Testing Rules for Inbound Travelers
December 7, 2021

All travelers aged 12 and over that wish to travel to the UK as of December 7 will be required to show a negative pre-departure LFD (Lateral Flow Device] or PCR test, conducted as close as possible to the departure date and no earlier than 48 hours before traveling.

According to an announcement by the UK government, the measure is undertaken as part of efforts to slow the importation of the new Omicron variant of the coronavirus into the country.

Airlines will be required to check for pre-departure tests alongside a completed passenger locator form, while passengers will not be allowed to board a flight without providing evidence of a negative test result.

Given the reduced incubation period of the Omicron variant, passengers are advised to take the pre-departure test as close as possible to their scheduled departure to the UK and no earlier than 48 hours before traveling.

UK adds Nigeria to red list for travel

Meanwhile, the UK has added Nigeria to its red list for travel following dozens of cases of the Omicron variant reported in England which are linked to travel from this country.

This means that UK and Irish citizens and residents arriving from Nigeria are required to self-isolate in a government-approved managed quarantine facility for 10 days, and receive two negative PCR tests, as further precautionary action is taken against the Omicron variant.

The vast majority of cases in the UK have clear links to overseas travel from South Africa and Nigeria.

Therefore, a temporary travel ban has been introduced for all non-UK and non-Irish citizens and residents who have been in Nigeria in the last 10 days, meaning they will be refused entry into the UK.

This does not apply to those who have stayed airside and only transited through Nigeria while changing flights.

All temporary measures will be reviewed after three weeks to ensure that they remain necessary and proportionate, and this will take place on December 20.