Steps to leave and enter the UK

UK on a map

Steps to leave and enter the UK 

Yes, travel is a little more complicated right now. But all you need to do is follow the below steps.

Remember, rules and entry requirements are changing ALL the time. Keep an eye on updates not just for returning to the UK, but entry rules for where you’re visiting too.

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Leaving the UK 

1. Check the entry guidelines of the country you’re visiting. To enter the country you may need to fill out a form or take COVID tests. Visit our COVID-19 Travel Map or the government’s Foreign Office website

2. Book your COVID tests. We recommend these suppliers

3. Check airline-specific requirements for boarding. You might need to upload documents to the airline's website or need to download a mobile app. 

4. Re-check FCDO travel advice and that you have the right documents and mobile apps. 

If you're unsure, talk to your travel manager. 

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Returning to the UK

Countries are categorised under the UK's Rest of the World and Red lists. Rules differ depending on whether you are double vaccinated or considered unvaccinated.  

Every traveller entering the UK must complete a passenger locator form. You are also required to take a COVID test on day two of arriving - even if you're vaccinated. 

Travellers considered unvaccinated or coming into the UK from a red list country will be required to take more steps. 

Find out more about what each category entails here.

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5 tips for stress-free tests

1. ORDER EARLY

COVID tests have long expiry dates. Order in advance and have them ready – even if you don’t have to take the test until nearer your trip.

2. CHECK YOUR RESULTS FORMAT

Some countries (South Africa, for example) require a printed negative test, whereas others will accept an email or in-app result.

3. CHECK YOUR TIMINGS

Double, triple check what the country requires. It varies between every country, so make sure you are taking the test within the time frame they’re requested. You’ll also need to give the lab enough time to process the result before you fly.

4. READ THE TEST INSTRUCTIONS

All the providers we work with give very clear instructions, but it’s important they are followed exactly.

5. PRINT DOCUMENTS

Have paper copies of test certificates and Passenger Locator Forms, in case your battery runs out or you have poor internet connection.

Still confused? Let’s talk

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