Government announces changes to travel entry rules for UK

Passport Control

On Friday 17th Sept 2021, the UK Government announced several changes relating to entry requirements for arrivals into England. The latest update includes amends relating to:

  • A simplified traffic light system
  • Rules for vaccinated and unvaccinated travellers
  • Reduced Covid-19 testing
  • Less Red list countries

As of 04:00 BST 4th October, the existing ‘traffic light system’ will be replaced with a two-tiered, simpler system. The new categorisation will see less countries classed as ‘red’ and an expanded list of ‘none-red’ destinations.

Also from this date, vaccinated adults and children under 18 (who are not vaccinated), will no longer be required to take a pre-departure Covid-19 test when returning from red list countries.

Until the end of October, a ‘day 2’ PCR test upon entering the UK will still be mandatory. However, the Government have announced their intention to replace this with a cheaper lateral flow test – the date is still to be confirmed.

Travellers entering into the UK are still required to fill out a Passenger Locator Form.

Any adults arriving in the UK from red list destinations must adhere to the existing pre-departure, day 2 and day 8 PCR testing package. In addition, the 10 day self-isolation period remains in place. Arrivals from red list destinations are required to follow the current hotel quarantine guidelines.

In addition to the US and EU, several other countries will be added to the ‘approved vaccine countries’ list. The list includes Canada, Israel, Japan and Singapore.


From 04:00 BST 22nd September, a number of destinations will be removed from the ‘red list’. These are Kenya, Oman, Turkey, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Maldives, Sri Lanka and Egypt.

This policy will remain under review, with regular updates to the system expected.



MIDAS Travel consultants advise all our travellers and bookers on any changes affecting their trips.

Should MIDAS Travel clients wish to find out more, please contact your travel team. For any other enquiries, get in touch.