UK-bound passengers need to RT-PCR test by day 2 and isolate till results not received

As news of the Omicron variant surfaced over Thanksgiving, various countries have started to impose their own restrictions on international travel, India has still been quiet, and in fact, announced the opening up of international travel on the same day as this news came through.

The United Kingdom, however, with two cases of the Omicron already in their territory, have now changed their rules (again), to deem a compulsory RT-PCR test on arrival (up to two days after arrival) from people. This rule is not just valid for countries in Africa, but globally.

As per the new requirements posted on the Gov.Uk website,

From 04:00 Tuesday 30 November 2021 testing and isolation requirements will change for all arrivals into the UK.

After 04:00 Tuesday 30 November 2021 lateral flow tests will no longer be accepted and all travellers arriving into the UK will be required to book and take COVID-19 PCR tests.

Here is a screengrab from the Passenger Locator Form, which came up for this requirement.

Trouble with the UK requirements is, all the private operators have no timeline by when they will return the test, and RT-PCR tests in the UK are expensive, which is also a problem for many travellers.


If you are arriving in the UK after November 30, 2021, take note to book an RT-PCR test on arrival which needs to be submitted by day 2. You might want to check if your test provider provides you the flexibility to change from a lateral flow test to a PCR test, accordingly.

What do you make of the (ever) changing requirements to travel to the United Kingdom?

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About Ajay

Ajay Awtaney is the Founder and Editor of Live From A Lounge (LFAL), a pioneering digital platform renowned for publishing news and views about aviation, hotels, passenger experience, loyalty programs, travel trends and frequent travel tips for the Global Indian. He is considered the Indian authority on business travel, luxury travel, frequent flyer miles, loyalty credit cards and travel for Indians around the globe. Ajay is a frequent contributor and commentator on the media as well, including ET Now, BBC, CNBC TV18, NDTV, Conde Nast Traveller and many other outlets.

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