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Which countries are exempt from the UK travel quarantine?

The government has today announced the list of countries and territories that are to be exempt from the requirement to quarantine for 14 days on return to England.  The announcement will be welcome news for travellers from England who can now go on holiday, visit family members and undertake business in a long list of countries without having to quarantine or self-isolate on their return home.  The coronavirus (covid-19) travel corridors will come into effect on 10 July 2020.

For the latest guidance from the Home Office as to the list of quarantine-free countries please visit here. To discuss a UK visa application or immigration appeal, contact our immigration barristers on 0203 617 9173 or complete our enquiry form below.

How is the 14-day travel quarantine requirement changing in England?

The government is opening up a number of travel corridors designed to allow travel between England and other countries with relatively low levels of coronavirus.

From 10 July 2020, travellers arriving into England will not have to self-isolate on arrival if they have travelled from one of the countries on the list of travel corridor countries and have not been to, or stopped in, a country that is not on the travel corridor list in the previous 14 days.

This relaxation applies to all travel into England, whether by plane, train, ferry, coach or any other method.

The travel corridor scheme also means that persons whose outbound journey involves travelling to England will not need to quarantine for two weeks after landing in England if they have travelled from a country on the travel corridor list and have not been to, or stopped in, a country that is not on the travel corridor list in the previous 14 days.

Earlier proposals to classify countries using a traffic light system, with each country identified as green, amber or red depending on the number of new cases of coronavirus emerging and the risk of this changing, appears to have been scrapped in favour of a single list of quarantine-free countries.

Which countries are exempt from the 14 days travel quarantine requirement?

A total of 59 countries and territories are included on the quarantine-free travel list:  

  • Andorra
  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Aruba
  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Bahamas
  • Barbados
  • Belgium
  • Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba
  • Croatia
  • Curaçao
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Dominica
  • Faroe Islands
  • Fiji
  • Finland
  • France
  • French Polynesia
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Greenland
  • Grenada
  • Guadeloupe
  • Hong Kong
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Italy
  • Jamaica
  • Japan
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Macau
  • Malta
  • Mauritius
  • Monaco
  • Netherlands
  • New Caledonia
  • New Zealand
  • Norway
  • Poland
  • Réunion
  • San Marino
  • Serbia
  • Seychelles
  • South Korea
  • Spain
  • St Barthélemy
  • St Kitts and Nevis
  • St Lucia
  • St Pierre and Miquelon
  • Switzerland
  • Taiwan
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Turkey
  • Vatican City
  • Vietnam

In addition, 14 British Overseas Territories will also be exempt.

It is important to note that the information presented here is correct at the date of posting.  Travel corridors will be closed or restricted if coronavirus cases increase in either England or a partner country.  Equally, new travel corridors may be opened if infection rates fall in the UK and elsewhere in the world.  We recommend checking the latest official government travel advice before travelling.

Will I need to quarantine in my intended destination?

Travellers from England may still face restrictions at their intended destination as they will have to comply with coronavirus requirements in the country that they travel to. This may include self-isolating or providing details to local authorities.

You should check the latest Foreign and Commonwealth Office coronavirus advice for the country you are travelling to.

What is the position in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland?

At the time of writing, restrictions on international travel remain in place in Wales and Scotland. Similarly, in Northern Ireland quarantine regulations remain in place for travellers arriving from outside the UK and the Republic of Ireland.

Who else is exempt from the 14-day coronavirus quarantine period?

Travellers from within the Common Travel Area (Ireland, Isle of Man and Channel Islands) are already not required to self-isolate if they have been in the Common Travel Area for the last 14 days before entering the UK.

The Home Office has also published a list of persons and occupations that are exempt from 14-day covid-19 self-isolation period.  

These exemptions will continue to apply following the introduction of the travel corridor scheme.

How do travel corridors fit with the advice against ‘all but essential international travel’?

The Foreign & Commonwealth Office has updated its global advisory against ‘all but essential’ travel and published a list of destinations which have been assessed as no longer posing an unacceptably high risk for British travellers.  The list of exemptions comes into force on 4 July 2020.

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For expert advice regarding coronavirus and UK immigration, contact our immigration barristers on 0203 617 9173 or complete our online enquiry form below.

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