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US Travelers to UK

ElizaN

10+ Posts
I'm planning to fly from Dublin to London in mid-September this year. I've booked my accommodation, and it's too early to book trains, but I'm getting anxious. If I understand correctly, the lock down in the UK has been extended for another month at least. Is that correct, and are the covid variants still going up?

Any advice about how long I wait to make the call?

Thank you,
Elizabeth
 

Pauline

Forums Admin
The delta variant cases are rising here and some predict a third wave in July. Our lockdown is pretty much over but there was a final phase to end on June 21. That has been extended 4 weeks until July 19 so more people can get vaccinated.

Currently large inside groups, concerts and nightclubs are not allowed, and we have to quarantine on return if we travel internationally. It has been said that soon this will change so that fully vaccinated travelers won’t have to quarantine.

I would wait until July 19 to see what happens here. Earlier this year I was convinced that all would be open by the end of June. I was wrong.
 

Pauline

Forums Admin
This is a good page to see the UK rules on visitors.


This page shows the red, amber, green lists.


The US is on the amber list. These are the current rules:

Before travel to England​

Before you travel to England you must:
  • take a COVID-19 test
  • book and pay for day 2 and day 8 COVID-19 travel tests – to be taken after arrival in England
  • complete a passenger locator form

On arrival in England​

On arrival in England you must:
  • quarantine at home or in the place you are staying for 10 days
  • take a COVID-19 test on or before day 2 and on or after day 8
 

Pauline

Forums Admin
Hopefully this all changes on July 19. If not we are truly doomed here. I have a reservation for Switzerland in mid August for 4 weeks. I have paid a deposit on the first week only (Grindelwald) and can cancel by early July to get most of the deposit back. Hoping I don’t have to do that.
 

ElizaN

10+ Posts
Thank you Pauline! I have much greater clarity after reading the articles you posted. July 19 will be decision day.
 

Mom83

100+ Posts
Pauline. Our son-in-law is possibly thinking of flying home from the US to the UK if his parents are still not allowed to fly from the UK to the US late July. This would be late August/early September. He would only stay for 4/5 days. He is a UK citizen. Under current rules, I assume he has to quarantine at his parents home the entire visit, but would he be allowed to fly home before the end of the 10 day quarantine period?
I am sorry to be so dense, but this is all so confusing to me.
 

Pauline

Forums Admin
I would assume he could leave. We had to quarantine at home last October after our Switzerland/Italy trip. No one talked about it to us at the border. We submitted our locator form online. We heard nothing from anyone during our quarantine. We were able to drive from the Chunnel home because you can travel to get to your quarantine location.

But, I think he should wait. His parents will have to quarantine as well I think because he will be in the house with them. This may change when they allow vaccinated people to not quarantine.

Wait for a few more weeks. All should be cleared up soon, by July 19.

In most ways things are normal here. Restaurants and pubs are open, our town’s food festival took place yesterday. We were out touring an open garden today. People are traveling around the country - lots of visitors here in Dorset.
 

Pauline

Forums Admin
I found it on the government site:

If you’re travelling to England for less than 10 days​

If you’re travelling to England for less than 10 days, you will need to quarantine for the whole of your stay.

 

Pauline

Forums Admin
A bit more on that page says he can quarantine at his family’s home but must stay separate. Of course, no one would know what went on in the home.

I really think the UK is going to open up to the US soon, before July 19.

Quarantining safely​

As soon as you arrive at your place of quarantine you should, as far as possible, avoid contact with other people in the place where you’re quarantining to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19.

You should stay in a well ventilated room with an outside window that can be opened, separate from other people in your home.

If you’re staying in a hotel or guest house, you must stay away from others who did not travel with you. You must not use shared areas such as bars, restaurants, health clubs and sports facilities.

Stay 2 metres apart from other people staying there at all times.
 

Mom83

100+ Posts
Oh, I hope you are right and that both the UK and the US open to each other very soon...especially for vaccinated individuals. If his parents cannot come here, it would help if he could at least fly there to see them.
Thank you, Pauline, for all this very helpful information.
 

Pauline

Forums Admin
I just read on Twitter from Paul Charles, UK travel expert, that the traffic light list will be reviewed on the 24th (Thursday) and the travel plan reviewed on the 28th (a week Monday). That should give some answers.

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Terry

100+ Posts
We have a trip planned to London from US on the 29th of this month to see my son and grandchildren. Honestly, the testing adds not only inconvenience to the trip, but cost, too. We need a test before we enter UK and before we return to US (these are not too problematic or prohibitive, as it's covered by our medicare for our departure from US and we can purchase rapid antigen tests here for about $29 each at our local drugstore to facilitate our return to US at the end of our trip). But in order to even enter UK, we must fill out a Public Health Locator form, which must also include a pre-scheduled travel test package for day 2 and day 8 after arrival. Or you cannot enter the country. They must be a specific type of Covid NAAT test (either PCR or LAMP), and they ain't cheap. $205+ for each of us. Most of the information about what tests and type you need is easily researched on the US state.gov and UK state.gov sites. It is also recommended that you download a VERIFY app, that consolidates all your Covid/travel data.

With the UK now so opened up, and infection rates going up, I'm not as keen about this trip as I was when I scheduled it. We are doing no traveling or touring - strictly family time, in one place. A two-week trip - first time I'm not excited about a trip. :(
 

Pauline

Forums Admin
I read today about the chaos at Heathrow with this change allowing return from amber countries without quarantine if vaccinated. And I read that they are not even looking at test results because of the chaos.

I am looking into tests too for our trip to France and Switzerland, for return to the UK. You can schedule tests at Boots, which might be cheaper and more convenient.


It is a mess here. Covid cases, delta variant, are increasing. All lockdown rules are gone but many businesses are still requiring masks, London transportation too. We get mixed messages from the government. Many people are off work, and students out of school, because they get pinged by the NHS Covid app which reports they were near someone with symptoms. Many people are turning off or deleting the app. One government official says the app notification is advisory, not legal. Another says you have to obey it.

But, in daily life it all seems normal, at least out here in Dorset. And we’ve had a week of sunny, hot days!

@Terry do you have to quarantine on arrival in the UK? The US is on the amber list and this is what it says on the government site.

Amber list rules if you are not fully UKvaccinated​

These rules apply if you are not fully vaccinated under the UK vaccination programme.

They also apply if you have been in France in the 10 days before you arrive in England, even if you are fully vaccinated under the UK vaccination programme.

Before travel to England​

Before you travel to England you must:

On arrival in England​

On arrival in England you must:
  • quarantine at home or in the place you are staying for 10 days
  • take a COVID-19 test on or before day 2 and on or after day 8
Read about quarantine and taking COVID-19 tests.

Children aged 4 and under do not need to take the day 2 or day 8 test but must still quarantine at their home or in the place that they are staying.

You may be able to end quarantine early if you pay for a private COVID-19 test through the Test to Release scheme.
 

Terry

100+ Posts
Yes, I researched this too, and even though we’re fully vaccinated we must quarantine because US is Amber. Because we are not “UK vaccinated” !! Same vaccine (Moderna for me, Pfizer for Stu), but I guess there’s no way to prove that we aren’t faking it? The test to release scheme also costs mucho dinero. I will look into Boots - thanks.
 

ElizaN

10+ Posts
I've very reluctantly decided to postpone my trip to the UK and Ireland to next spring. My decision was a combination of my concern over the Delta variant and my current dental issues. I had to have dental surgery to place implants, and I found out last week that the process won't be completed by my departure date in Sept. It was the hardest decision I had to make since I decided to move to Oregon from Texas!
 

Terry

100+ Posts
Thanks for this article, Pauline. I am very close to canceling our trip. My major concern is not the flight, nor our time in London, but those long queues at Heathrow are worrying the bejeebees out of me. That is definitely over-the-top exposure.
 

Pauline

Forums Admin
Can you try again in a few months? It is chaotic now because everything recently changed. In a month or two you would see the case numbers here too. We are doing a Europe trip next month, but we are driving from here which makes everything easier IMO.
 

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