Brexit, vaccine, PCR test … What you need to know to go there in the fall

The British government announced an easing as of October 4 of the entry conditions to England for vaccinated travelers.

Did you miss London? Good news, it is now possible to return there without restriction on condition of being vaccinated. To accompany this timid reopening of tourism, Eurostar has even increased the number of trains on all its lines. From October 4, French people vaccinated to England will no longer need to perform a test before leaving France. There remains one concern, this time about Brexit: will it be more complicated to travel across the Channel after leaving the single market and the customs union? “ No, nothing changes for French and European travelers until October 1 », Confirms Séverine Tharreau, head of the Great Britain Tourist Board, VisitBritain. European citizens will be able to continue to use the Parafe automatic passport control systems. Random customs checks will then be carried out before boarding or during the journey. We take stock.

Brexit: how to get to the UK from October 1, 2021?

Entry requirements for England, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales and the Channel Islands (Jersey and Guernsey) change significantly for leisure or business stays from October 1, 2021. Main modification: the identity card will no longer suffice to cross the Channel. Citizens of the EU, EEA and Switzerland must imperatively have a passport, even if it expires in less than 6 months. No visa will be required for tourist stays of a maximum duration of 6 months. Note that for French residents in England (“Settled” Where “Pre-settled status”), the identity card will remain valid until 2025.

On the telephony side, the four French operators will not overtax the calls and mobile internet of their subscribers (roaming) passed from Great Britain. Le Figaro had announced it in January 2020. In short, French subscribers who use their mobile from Great Britain will be able to continue to do so, as part of their package.

Health: what entry formalities for French people traveling to the United Kingdom?

  • End of the test before departure for vaccinated French people

Concretely, from October 4, vaccinated travelers to England will no longer need to take a test before leaving a country that is not on the red list, said Transport Minister Grant. Shapps.

  • PCR replaced by antigen at the end of October

Then at the end of October 2021, the PCR test required on the second day after arrival on English soil will be replaced by an antigen test “less expensive”, said Grant Shapps.

  • Confirmatory PCR in the event of a positive test

Travelers who test positive should self-isolate and then perform a confirmatory PCR test, at no additional cost, which will be analyzed to identify new variants.

  • What about Scotland and Wales?

The rules for entering British territory linked to the coronavirus epidemic can be adapted by the different nations (Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland). It is strongly recommended to check the provisions applicable outside England by following the following links:

Scottish government decided not to retain the deletion of the test before departure and the abandonment of the PCR test on the second day in favor of an antigen test due to “significant concerns” about the impact of this measure on public health.

The Welsh government, who announced the introduction of vaccine passports at nightclubs and events with large audiences, said he was reviewing the UK government’s decision but was cautious, stressing that “these changes are not without risk”.

On the other hand, unvaccinated travelers from countries not classified in red will be required to undergo PCR testing before their departure and on the second and eighth day after their arrival, with the possibility of doing a third test to reduce the quarantine of 10 days.

Restrictions, bars, restaurants, hotels, beaches, curfew … What measures are in force in the United Kingdom?

The restrictions can vary significantly depending on the place of stay or residence:

In England

The government recommends wearing a mask on public transport. Restaurants, cinemas and museums are open, with specific health measures.

In Wales

Like England, Wales has relaxed some of its health restrictions. All the restrictions applied can be viewed on the Welsh authorities’ website.

In Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland has health restrictions, like other nations. The list of restrictions should be consulted on the website of the Northern Irish authorities.

In Scotland

Wearing a mask indoors is compulsory in public places. The device for tracing the contact cases of a person who has tested positive also remains in place. Details of measurements and levels can be viewed on the Scottish Government website.

The health situation in the United Kingdom

These simplifications will allow “more people to travel, see loved ones or do business around the world, while giving the travel industry a boostGrant Shapps said in a statement. If the government has decided to abandon the introduction of a vaccination passport in England, it is first of all thanks to the success of the vaccination campaign. To date, more than 80% of the UK population over 16 is fully vaccinated, according to the latest data available. In detail, as of September 11, 2021, more than 48 million Britons had received a first dose and 43 million a second injection. One of the most affected countries, the United Kingdom has deplored nearly 135,000 deaths since the start of the pandemic.

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