Guidance for British people travelling abroad during the coronavirus pandemic, if they are legally permitted to travel under current UK COVID-19 restrictions. 

Before You Travel

When You’re Abroad

  • continue to follow updates to travel advice, as there may be changes for your destination
  • be prepared to comply with changing restrictions to manage local COVID-19 outbreaks, such as border closures, movement restrictions, testing and quarantine requirements
  • if you test positive for COVID-19, you may need to seek treatment where you are, and stay until you have recovered. If local authorities tell you to quarantine, you should expect to do that where you are
  • travel restrictions may unexpectedly delay your return home. Plan for possible delays. Make sure you have access to money and have made practical arrangements to be away for longer than planned
  • if delays occur, you should keep in contact with your travel company or airline for any changes to transport schedules
  • read this guidance if you are unable to return to the UK due to COVID-19

Prepare to Return to the UK

Before you enter the UK you must:

When you arrive in the UK

  • you must quarantine and take further COVID-19 tests when you enter the UK from abroad (except Ireland), unless you are exempt
  • if you’re arriving in England, and you are not travelling from a country on the red list, you may be able to pay for a COVID-19 test under Test to Release, to find out if you can reduce your self-isolation period

Consular help from the FCDO

Consular officers cannot provide additional information by phone. Read more about the consular support provided.

If FCDO travel advice changes when you are abroad

Travel advice may change while you are in a country to advise against all travel there, or all but essential travel, because of new COVID-19 risks.

If this happens, you should not return immediately to the UK. Instead, you should follow the local advice on any restrictions the local authorities are taking to control the virus before your return to the UK.

If you decide to shorten your stay abroad because of a change in travel advice, you should:

  1. contact your airline and travel company to discuss your options
  2. take the actions to prepare to return to the UK

If changes relating to a new COVID-19 variant mean you cannot return from travel abroad

If you’re travelling abroad and unable to return to the UK, contact your airline or travel provider for advice. You can also contact your nearest British embassy, high commission or consulate for urgent assistance.

Your mental wellbeing

Your emotional and mental wellbeing is important. Keep in regular contact with the people who usually support you: family, friends and colleagues, especially if you are in quarantine abroad.

Read guidance on how to look after your wellbeing and mental health if you’re abroad during the COVID-19 pandemic.

COVID-19 health advice

Read the latest NHS guidance on COVID-19 for the current situation in the UK and abroad, and the latest government guidance on COVID-19.

The NaTHNaC provides general advice on preparing for foreign travel and how to reduce the spread of respiratory viruses.

If you live abroad permanently

If you live abroad permanently, follow the advice of local authorities where you live. Check the travel advice pages for information on COVID-19 restrictions in individual countries.