Covid-19 vaccine passports
Covid-19 vaccine passports can provide proof that a traveller is fully vaccinated against the coronavirus and potentially also show Covid-19 test results or proof of having previously been infected.
For a full summary of Covid-19 statistics and regulations by country, and to compare destinations around the world, visit our interactive Covid-19 travel planner.
Why do we need vaccine passports?
The idea of vaccine passports is not new. Prior to the late 1970s world travellers regularly had to prove they were vaccinated against smallpox, and proof of a yellow fever vaccination is still required by most countries in sub-Saharan Africa and many in South America.
The coronavirus pandemic has brought international travel and foreign holidays to an almost complete standstill. An array of Covid-19 vaccines have been developed and are now being rolled out around the world.
As people are vaccinated, there is a need to restart international travel safely while minimising restrictions and the need for additional testing and quarantine.
A Covid-19 vaccine passport can provide proof that a traveller is fully vaccinated against the coronavirus and potentially show Covid-19 test results or proof of previously having had Covid.
Track the latest statistics on Covid-19 vaccinations by country with our guide to the number of people who are fully and partially vaccinated.
NHS Covid Pass
The NHS has created an app that allows NHS patients (in England and Wales only) to demonstrate that they have been fully vaccinated for the purposes of travel. In Northern Ireland, there is a similar app to the UK called COVIDCertNI while in Scotland it is necessary to apply for a paper certificate.
Once installed, the NHS app produces an NHS Covid Pass that shows the exact date of coronavirus jabs received, including the type of vaccine and batch numbers.
The NHS Covid Pass also shows any positive Covid-19 test results from the past six months which can be used a proof of having recovered from the disease if required.
The NHS Covid Pass is available now on iOS via the Apple Store and Android on Google Play. Once downloaded you need to set up an NHS login and prove your identity. The app then securely connects to information from your GP practice.
Display your Covid-19 vaccine status as a QR code within the NHS app, download a PDF version or request an offline copy by email.
Please note: most countries in Europe including Croatia, Cyprus, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Ireland, Malta, Poland, Portugal, and Spain, are now accepting the NHS Covid Pass as proof of being fully vaccinated. However, you are urged to double-check before finalising your travel plans.
EU Digital Covid Certificate
The European Union launched its vaccine passport on 1 July 2021. The purpose of the EU Digital Covid Certificate (formerly called the Digital Green Certificate) is to facilitate free movement across borders within the EU (and some third countries) but it is not a requirement for travel.
It is available to nationals of all EU countries plus all residents of Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, San Marino and Switzerland.
The EU Digital Covid Certificate is digital proof that a person has either been vaccinated against Covid-19 or recovered from Covid-19. It can also show if the holder has recently received a negative test result. The certificate is recognised by the UK authorities for travel to the UK but is not available to UK residents.
IATA Travel Pass
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is also trialling a type of vaccine passport called the IATA Travel Pass to enable air passengers to travel across borders more easily.
The digital app is designed to inform travellers what tests are required before travelling and for them to store proof of their vaccination status and test results.
The following airlines are trialling the IATA Travel Pass:
- Aer Lingus
- Air Baltic
- Air France
- Air New Zealand
- Air Serbia
- Azerbaijan Airlines
- Bamboo Airways
- British Airways
- China Southern Airlines
- Copa Airlines
- El Al
- Gulf Air
- Hong Kong Airlines
- Japan Airlines
- Korean Air
- Malaysia Airlines
- Malindo Air
- Philippine Airlines
- Qatar Airways
- Royal Brunei Airlines
- Singapore Airlines
- Thai Airways
- Thai Smile
- Turkish Airlines
- T'way Air
- Vietjet Airlines
- Vietnam Airlines
- Virgin Atlantic
Covid travel planner
More about Covid-19 & travelling
- Covid Travel Planner
- UK travel list
- New cases by country
- Covid vaccinations
- Travel bans
- Covid testing
- Top deals on tests
- Coronavirus overview
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