UK red list slashed

The last few weeks have seen increasing relaxation of travel-related COVID-19 restrictions, including the simplification of the travel traffic light system and the announcement that Day 2 PCR tests can be replaced by lateral flow tests.

The good news continued yesterday, with the Government’s announcement that, with effect from 4am on 11 October, the UK red list will be reduced to just seven countries:

  • Columbia
  • Dominican Republic
  • Ecuador
  • Haiti
  • Panama
  • Peru
  • Venezuela

Expanded list of countries with approved COVID-19 proof of vaccination

Also in yesterday’s announcement was the news that 37 countries / territories have been added to the list of those with approved COVID-19 proof of vaccination for travel to England.

The expanded list includes Brazil, Hong Kong, Pakistan and Turkey, to name a few. For the complete list and further details, please visit .GOV.UK.

Eligible travellers vaccinated in a country or territory on this list will be treated in the same way as fully vaccinated, returning UK residents. This means that, as long as they haven’t visited a red list country within 10 days of travel, they will only have to take a Day 2 test upon arrival in England.

Lateral Flow Tests to replace PCR tests

From late October, eligible fully vaccinated adults (and children under the age of 18) arriving in England from any country not on the red list may choose to replace the Day 2 PCR test with a cheaper lateral flow test.

Lateral flow tests can be ordered online and taken at home. The Government has confirmed that anyone choosing this option may send a photo of their lateral flow test, as a minimum requirement to verify the result. If the test is positive, a free PCR test will be provided to confirm the individual’s COVID-19 status.

Changes throughout the UK

Please be aware that these changes apply to travellers to England. If you’re arriving in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland, you must familiarise yourself with the requirements for other origin or destination countries before you travel, including looking on the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office site.

Further information

For further information on the traffic light travel system or quarantine rules, please visit .GOV.UK or the UK Department for Transport.

For all other queries, please contact your ISON Travel Consultant, or connect with us.