After the first mention of the introduction of lateral flow tests for vaccinated travellers in early October, Grant Shapps has finally announced when we can see a switch from PCR day-2 tests to cheaper lateral flow.
There is a lot of excitement as the switch will come on the 24th of October, in time to enjoy some October half-term holidays. This applies to all vaccinated travellers returning from the Rest of the World list destinations from the 24th of October (you can check out which countries are left on the red list in our article).
Though there will still be restrictions of the destination to follow (check these out on the Foreign Travel Advice page), this means that now vaccinated travellers and children between 5 and 17 will only have to take a day-2 lateral flow test when they return to the UK. If a traveller tests positive, this will be followed by a PCR test and self-isolation.
The cheaper lateral flow tests will be available to book from the 22nd of October, once the government have posted an approved list of private test providers on the government website. All travellers need to do is take the test on or before day-2 after they arrive back in the UK and take a photograph of the result and booking reference to send to the provider.
Travellers can also book lateral flow tests with testing centres in some airports. Any traveller that has already booked a PCR test will not be required to book another test as lateral flow.
Sajid Javid, the Health Secretary, said, “we want to make going abroad easier and cheaper, whether you’re travelling for work or visiting friends and family.
“Lateral flow tests will be available later this month for those returning from half-term holidays.
“This change to testing is only possible thanks to the incredible progress of our vaccination programme, which means we can safely open up travel as we learn to live with the virus.”
Not only does this change make travel cheaper and easier overall, but it will give UK travellers the confidence to travel where it may have seemed daunting before. Coupling this with the reduced red list, removed FCDO advice, and what looks like the start of more destinations opening to UK travellers, is a fantastic entry to 2022 for travellers and the travel industry alike.
The reduced cost and time of a lateral flow test is excellent news all around, opening up the world to even more travellers. So if you’re looking forward to booking a holiday soon with the beginning of day-2 lateral flow tests for vaccinated travellers, don’t forget to get in contact with a travel business registered with PTS providing complete financial protection through trust. Or, if you’d like assistance choosing one of the lovely PTS members, you can contact PTS directly at 0207 190 9988.