UK travel list

In a bid to get us all travelling safely as soon as possible, the UK government has introduced a traffic light system for foreign travel.

The scheme, which started on 17 May 2021, is designed to help travellers stay as safe as possible when travelling internationally by categorising destinations as green, amber and red. The lists of countries are reviewed every three weeks.

For a full summary of Covid-19 statistics and entry regulations by country, and to compare destinations around the world, visit our interactive Covid-19 travel planner.

UK quarantine & testing for travellers

The UK traffic light system categorises countries according to their risk and remains under constant review. Three mains factors are being considered when it comes to categorising countries: their vaccination rates, the prevalence of Covid-19 and variants and the capability of their genome sequencing.

UK travel list with green, amber & red countries © Of the Village - Adobe Stock Image
UK travel list with green, amber & red countries © Of the Village - Adobe Stock Image

The results determine whether countries are listed in green, amber or red categories and, therefore, what will be required of travellers when returning from those destinations.

Pre-departure test in destination Test on arrival in the UK Quarantine on arrival in the UK
Green Required PCR test on or before day 2 Not required
Amber - fully vaccinated in the UK, EU or USA or under 18 Required PCR test on or before day 2 Not required
Amber - unvaccinated adults, or not vaccinated in the UK, EU or USA Required PCR test - days 2 & 8 10 days at home - Test to Release (England only) on day 5
Red Required PCR test - days 2 & 8 10 days in quarantine hotel at a cost*

*Only UK and Irish residents are permitted to enter the UK from red list countries.

To help travellers plan as far ahead as possible, a 'green watchlist' has also been introduced. The idea of this is to identify when a country on the green list might soon change to the amber list; this is to warn of potential changes in advance and hopefully avoid any last-minute panic.

The quarantine and testing requirements when travelling between countries within the Common Travel Area (CTA), including the UK, Ireland, Channel Islands and the Isle of Man, are different to green list countries.

When will the traffic light system be updated?

The UK traffic light system started on 17 May 2021 and the red, amber and green lists are reviewed every 3 weeks. The next review will take place around 7 October 2021.

Will I need to quarantine if I go on holiday?

If you return from a green list country (or amber list country and you have been fully vaccinated in the UK, EU or USA or you are under 18), then no, you will not need to quarantine but until 4 October you will still need to take two tests: one, a nucleic acid or antigen test within 72 hours of boarding your plane to return to the UK and the other, a PCR test, on or before the second day after you arrive back.

If you return from an amber list country and you have not been fully vaccinated in the UK, EU or the USA or you are unvaccinated and not under 18 you will need to quarantine for 10 days at home with the option to Test to Release (England only) on day five. If the test is negative, you will no longer need to quarantine.

If returning from a red list country, you will need to quarantine for 10 days in a hotel. It has been suggested that quarantining in a hotel from a red list country could cost up to £1,750 per person, including two PCR tests.

How do I know which Covid-19 test I will need to take?

The type of test you will need to take will depend on where you have travelled. Please see the table above for more information on the type of Covid-19 test you will need to take.

Don't miss: our complete guide to Covid-19 testing for travel.

How do I book a Covid-19 test for travel?

There are numerous ways in which you can book a Covid-19 test with a government-approved private test provider. Lateral flow tests can cost from £5 to £50, while PCR tests cost from £40 to over £150. You will need to pre-book your PCR test before you return and it will need to be recorded on your passenger locator form.

The cost of tests varies widely so it is vital that you do your research to avoid paying more than you need to. Some airlines and tour operators provide access to discounts on tests if you are travelling with them.

What is the passenger locator form? You will need to complete a passenger locator form online up to 48 hours before arriving in the UK. You'll need to show your form when you check in to travel or board your plane, train or ferry to the UK.

Do I still need a test if I've been vaccinated?

Yes, even if you've been vaccinated you will still need to take the required tests depending on where you have travelled from, for now at least. This may change if vaccine passports become more widely accepted.

What is the Common Travel Area (CTA)?

The Common Travel Area (CTA) is a long-standing agreement between the UK, including Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man, and the Republic of Ireland. It guarantees the freedom of movement of British and Irish citizens with benefits such as the right to work, study and access healthcare.

However, when it comes to planning a holiday in 2021, this does not necessarily mean that UK citizens are able to travel quarantine and test-free within the Common Travel Area. The CTA agreement takes second place to all Covid-19 restrictions in any of the CTA territories.

Travelling into the UK from any of the Common Travel Area countries involves fewer restrictions than travelling from a green list country because no tests or quarantine are required. However, the same cannot be said when travelling in the opposite direction.

Find out more about the restrictions for travelling to the following destinations:

Destinations Current travel status
Isle of Man Open to everyone who is fully vaccinated and not travelled outside the CTA in the previous 10 days
Northern Ireland Travel from other areas of the UK is no longer restricted to essential travel only
Ireland Travel from the UK is possible but with restrictions such as quarantine
Jersey Travel from the UK is possible with minor restrictions if unvaccinated, but free of quarantine if fully vaccinated
Guernsey Travel from the UK is possible with restrictions such as quarantine. Fully vaccinated arrivals can skip quarantine

Do I need to take Covid-19 tests if I travel to the UK from the Common Travel Area?

No. If you arrive in the UK from the Channel Islands (Jersey and Guernsey), Isle of Man or Ireland, you do not need to take a pre-departure Covid-19 test as long as you have not been outside of the Common Travel Area in the previous 10 days.

Do I need to quarantine if I travel to the UK from the Common Travel Area?

No. If you travel to the UK from the Channel Islands (Jersey and Guernsey), Isle of Man or Ireland, you do not need to quarantine as long as you have not been outside of the Common Travel Area in the previous 10 days.

Latest updates to the traffic light system

The following changes to the UK traffic light system apply from 4am on Wednesday 22 September 2021:

Red to Amber:

  • Bangladesh
  • Egypt
  • Kenya
  • Maldives
  • Oman
  • Pakistan
  • Sri Lanka
  • Turkey

From Monday 4 October 2021 all amber list countries will be consolidated into the green list which is to be known as the "rest of the world" (ROW) list. Fully vaccinated travellers arriving from ROW list countries will no longer have to take a pre-departure test.

From late October, day two PCR tests will be replaced with cheaper lateral flow tests for fully vaccinated travellers.

UK traffic light system

The following tables show the updated red, amber and green lists as of Wednesday 22 September 2021, latest Covid-19 statistics and entry requirements:

Green list countries + Common Travel Area

Region UK list New cases/100k 7-day avg Vaccinations In destination
Partial Full Status Action
Anguilla Green 0 62.6% 59.8% Open for vaccinated Test
Antigua Green 436.0 44.5% 36.4% Open Test
Australia Green 53.8 57.9% 36.7% Closed Test + quarantine
Austria Green 158.2 62.5% 59.1% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Azores Green 28.8 82% 77% Open Test
Barbados Green 197.3 43.1% 33.7% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Bermuda Green 308.3 70.1% 68.7% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
British Indian Ocean Territory Green       Closed None
Brunei Green 190.6 53.7% 33.7% Closed Test + quarantine
Bulgaria Green 132.9 15.8% 15.8% Closed Test + quarantine
Canada Green 76.2 75.3% 69.2% Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Cayman Islands Green 45.6 81.5% 75.9% Closed Test + quarantine
Croatia Green 149.3 43.6% 40.9% Open Test
Denmark Green 54.9 76.4% 74.4% Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Dominica Green 1,194.6 32.3% 28.6% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Falkland Islands Green 0 73.1% 49.3% Closed Quarantine
Faroe Islands Green 34.8 76.6% 72.7% Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Finland Green 64.0 73.9% 58.7% Open for vaccinated Vaccine
Germany Green 87.5 66.5% 62.4% Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Gibraltar Green 276.0 100% 100% Open Test
Grenada Green 1,641.5 25.2% 17.4% Open for vaccinated Quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Guernsey CTA 65.1 49.2% 20.3% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Hong Kong Green   58.2% 52.4% Closed Test + quarantine
Iceland Green 59.3 81.9% 79.9% Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Ireland CTA 198.2 75.2% 72.1% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Isle of Man CTA 210.5 76.6% 74.3% Open for vaccinated Vaccine
Israel Green 677.9 69% 63.4% Closed Test + quarantine
Jersey CTA 168.8 76% 72.8% Open Test
Latvia Green 140.2 47.6% 43% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Liechtenstein Green 121.3 62% 55.9% Open for vaccinated Test
Lithuania Green 220.6 64% 59.4% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Madeira Green 66.1 82% 79% Open Test
Malta Green 54.6 81.4% 81.2% Open for vaccinated Vaccine
Montserrat Green 0 29.3% 27.5% Closed Test + quarantine
New Zealand Green 3.3 62% 32% Closed Test + quarantine
Norway Green 165.5 74% 64.8% Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Pitcairn Island Green   100% 100% Closed None
Romania Green 80.8 28% 27.4% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Singapore Green 51.7 79% 77.1% Closed Test + quarantine
Slovakia Green 57.4 44.2% 40.7% Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Slovenia Green 307.0 52.2% 46.6% Open Test
South Georgia Green       Closed None
Switzerland Green 213.9 60.5% 52.6% Open for vaccinated Test
Taiwan Green <1 48.6% 6.6% Closed Test + quarantine
Turks & Caicos Green 157.5 69.2% 62.6% Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated

† = Watchlist

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Amber list countries

Region UK list New cases/100k 7-day avg Vaccinations In destination
Partial Full Status Action
Andorra Amber 18.4 66.7% 54.1% Open Test
Aruba Amber 216.4     Open Test
Bahamas Amber 371.8 26.6% 14.9% Open Test
Balearic Islands Amber 62.7 80.9% 78% Open Test
Bangladesh Amber 9.7 13.1% 8.7% Open Test + quarantine
Belgium Amber 118.6 73.2% 71.3% Open for vaccinated Quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Belize Amber 255.8 44.5% 23.6% Open Test
Bonaire Amber       Open Test
British Virgin Islands Amber 0 60.5% 45.4% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Cambodia Amber 22.0 68.5% 59.7% Open Test + quarantine
Canary Islands Amber 35.6 84.2% 80.9% Open Test
China Amber <1 75.8% 67.1% Closed Test + quarantine
Curacao Amber 157.2 59.1% 53.6% Open Test
Cyprus Amber 172.7 66.3% 60.9% Open Test
Czech Republic Amber 24.5 56.3% 55% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Egypt Amber 2.9 7.4% 4.1% Open Test
Estonia Amber 216.9 56.3% 44% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Fiji Amber 125.0 63.1% 37.9% Closed Test + quarantine
France Amber 101.9 73.6% 63.7% Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
French Polynesia Amber 570.3 52% 44% Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Gambia Amber 2.4 7.2% 6.7% Open Test
Greece Amber 141.9 61.4% 57.3% Open Test
Greenland Amber 74.0 72% 63% Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Guadeloupe Amber       Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Hungary Amber 19.6 60.8% 57.8% Open Test
India Amber 17.1 42.9% 14.3% Closed Test + quarantine
Italy Amber 58.6 73.2% 65.5% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Jamaica Amber 150.8 17% 7.3% Open Test
Japan Amber 59.4 65.6% 53.3% Closed Test + quarantine
Jordan Amber 49.3 35.3% 30.8% Open Test
Kenya Amber 6.1 4.4% 1.5% Open Test + quarantine
Laos Amber 19.6 35.9% 25.2% Closed Test + quarantine
Luxembourg Amber 84.6 65.7%   Closed Test
Macau Amber   51.4% 45.1% Closed Test + quarantine
Madagascar Amber 0 <1% <1% Closed Test + quarantine
Malaysia Amber 416.7 66.9% 55.8% Closed Test + quarantine
Maldives Amber 156.0 71.9% 60.7% Open Test
Martinique Amber       Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Mauritius Amber 98.5 66.2% 61.5% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Monaco Amber 91.7 67.5% 59% Open Test
Morocco Amber 55.7 54.5% 45.2% Open Test
Netherlands Amber 96.3 70.3% 63.6% Open Test + quarantine
New Caledonia Amber 287.6 35.1% 26.2% Closed Test + quarantine
Oman Amber 8.1 51.9% 31.1% Closed Test + quarantine
Pakistan Amber 11.1 24.2% 10.6% Open Test + quarantine
Poland Amber 8.6 51.9% 50.8% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Portugal Amber 80.9 87% 81.8% Open Test
Puerto Rico Amber 93.9     Closed Test
Russia Amber 87.3 32% 27.8% Open Test + quarantine
Saba Amber       Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
San Marino Amber 194.5 71.5% 71.5% Open Test
Serbia Amber 627.1 43.9% 41.9% Open Test
Sint Eustatius Amber       Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
South Korea Amber 24.6 69% 41.9% Open Test + quarantine
Spain Amber 58.9 80% 76.6% Open Test
Sri Lanka Amber 108.1 63.8% 51% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
St Barthelemy Amber       Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
St Kitts & Nevis Amber 439.9 46.6% 40.9% Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine
St Lucia Amber 367.0 23.5% 15.8% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
St Pierre & Miquelon Amber       Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
St Vincent & the Grenadines Amber 128.0 17.5% 11.4% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Sweden Amber 77.0 69.6% 62.3% Closed Test
Turkey Amber 192.6 61.9% 49.3% Open Test
UAE Amber 63.2 90.9% 80.2% Open Test
USA Amber 304.9 63.5% 54.4% Closed Test
Vietnam Amber 91.5 27.7% 6.5% Closed Test + quarantine
Wallis & Futuna Amber 0 44.6% 44.6% Closed Test + quarantine

† = Watchlist

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Red list countries

Region UK list New cases/100k 7-day avg Vaccinations In destination
Partial Full Status Action
Argentina Red 42.2 63.5% 43% Closed Test + quarantine
Bolivia Red 26.0 35.2% 25.5% Open Test + quarantine
Botswana Red 184.9 15.3% 9.3% Open Test
Brazil Red 0 68.1% 37.1% Closed Test + quarantine
Cape Verde Red 118.7 48.5% 16.9% Open Test
Chile Red 15.8 76.4% 72.9% Closed Test + quarantine
Costa Rica Red 228.5 61.2% 33.6% Open None
Cuba Red 500.1 68.1% 39.4% Open Test + quarantine
Dominican Republic Red 15.2 54.5% 43.9% Open Test
Ecuador Red 7.9 59.8% 54.5% Open Test
Indonesia Red 15.0 28.4% 16.2% Closed Test + quarantine
Mexico Red 64.0 47.5% 31.8% Open None
Myanmar Red 30.2 9% 5.9% Closed Test + quarantine
Namibia Red   9% 5.5% Open Test
Nepal Red 31.0 20.9% 18.7% Closed Test + quarantine
Peru Red 17.7 37% 26.7% Open Test
Philippines Red 133.6 16.8% 11.3% Closed Test + quarantine
Reunion Red       Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Seychelles Red 369.1 74.6% 70.5% Open Test
South Africa Red 64.5 18.9% 12.9% Open Test
Tanzania Red 0 <1% <1% Open Test
Thailand Red 143.6 40.7% 20.4% Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Trinidad & Tobago Red 98.9 39.7% 32.9% Open for vaccinated Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated
Tunisia Red 99.4 38.6% 26.2% Open Test + quarantine excl. fully vaccinated

† = Watchlist

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