In the wake of the global pandemic, many countries across the world have decided to allow in only foreign nationals who have been fully vaccinated for Covid-19.
However, some Britons have chosen not to accept the vaccine, while some younger children have not yet been offered the jab.
While the likes of Spain, the US and France have reopened to vaccinated travellers only, a number of countries have opted to open their borders, quarantine-free, to anyone with a negative test result - with various other forms, post-arrival tests and paperwork needed along the way.
Here are the places where you can enter the country without a jab - most with some admin strings attached.
Please note countries’ entry requirements are subject to change at short notice; do check the Foreign Office travel advice before you go.
As of 1 March, unvaccinated visitors can enter Italy by showing a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours before arrival, or a negative rapid lateral flow test taken within the 48 hours before arrival.
You can also show the UK’s proof of COVID-19 recovery record, certifying that you have recovered from COVID-19 in the last 6 months.
Foreign Office guidance states: “You must fill in the passenger locator form (EU PLF) before you enter Italy to get a QR code to show to your [airline] and Border Police.”
All arrivals from the UK into Sicily will also need to undertake a rapid lateral flow test on arrival (administered by the local health authorities free of charge).
Once in Italy, a number of venues still require proof of full vaccination in order to enter; however, this is expected to be eased in early April.
Portugal, Madeira and the Azores
Mainland Portgual: Portugal changed its rules in September to allow unvaccinated Brits to enter with a negative Covid test result from within the 72 hours (PCR test) or 24 hours (antigen test) before travel. You must also fill in a passenger locator card.
If you’re booking an antigen test, you must make sure it meets the standards set out in the EU common list of Rapid Antigen Tests; you must not use the free NHS tests, but get an official test result which “identifies the type of test taken and gives your name, date of birth, the date and time the sample was collected, and the date of the result”, say Portuguese authorities.
Azores: Visitors to the Azores archipelago do not need to be vaccinated either, but must present a negative antigen test result from within the previous 48 hours or a PCR from the previous 72.
Madeira: Unjabbed visitors to the island of Madeira should complete its passenger locator form, but do not have to test if flying directly to the island.
With around a fifth of Greece’s economy dependent on tourism, this popular tourist destination was one of the keenest for UK holidaymakers to return. To enter the country with no proof of full vaccination, you must show one of the following:
- Proof of a negative PCR test, undertaken within the 72 hour period before arrival into Greece.
- Proof of a negative rapid antigen test from an authorised laboratory, undertaken within the 24 hour period before your arrival into Greece.
- A certificate of recovery from Covid-19. Greece will accept the UK’s proof of COVID-19 recovery and vaccination record.
Since 14 March, travellers to Greece no longer have to fill out a passenger locator form.
Once on the ground, Greece does require proof of vaccination to enter some venues and use some services, though masks are no longer needed in crowded outdoor spaces.
Unvaccinated travellers to Croatia can enter the country with proof of either a negative antigen test (issued within 24 hours of arrival), a negative PCR test (issued within 72 hours of arrival) or proof of recovery from Covid-19 within the past eight months.
You should also complete an online entry form before arrival.
Children under 12 arriving with an adult who has one of the above is exempt from showing these documents.
Once on the ground, Croatia does require proof of vaccination to enter some venues and use some services.
Unvaccinated travellers to Cyprus must provide proof of a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours prior to departure, or an antigen test from within the past 24 hours. They must then pay to take another PCR test (€15-19) upon arrival, remaining in isolation until the result comes back - this should be no longer than three hours.
They must also complete a Cyprus Flight Pass within 48 hours of departure.
Children who arrive before their 12th birthday are exempt from the testing rules.
Unvaccinated visitors to Northern Cyprus must quarantine for five days on arrival.
Once on the ground, Cyprus does require proof of vaccination to enter some venues and public spaces.
As of 21 February, Slovenia has dropped its “recovered/vaccinated/tested” requirement for entry. Unvaccinated travellers to Slovenia arriving by air or sea (not overland) must fill in a Digital Passenger Locator Form 24 hours before arrival.
On the ground, the country has also dropped its mask and vaccine passport restrictions for shops, restaurants, nightclubs and so on.
Turkey will accept a negative PCR test result (taken within 72 hours before arrival) or rapid antigen test result (taken within 48 hours before arrival) as an alternative to proof of vaccination.
Turkey will also accept proof of recovery from Covid within the past 180 days. For children aged 11 and under, no test result or vaccination certificate is needed.
All visitors must also complete an online declaration form no more than 72 hours before arrival.
As of 6 March, Ireland has scrapped all travel entry requirements for both vaccinated and unvaccinated visitors, including abolishing its passenger locator form.
A statement from the Irish government said: “Any individual that develops Covid-19 symptoms while in Ireland should follow the Health Service Executive guidance in relation to isolation and undertake antigen or PCR testing as appropriate”.
Unvaccinated travellers can now enter Austria with a Covid-19 test result. It must be a PCR test result from within the 72 hours before arrival, or a lateral flow/antigen test from within the 24 hours before arrival.
Alternatively, you can use proof of recovery from Covid within the past 180 days - Austria will accept the UK Covid Pass or the EU Covid Pass to prove recent infection.
As of 12 February 2022, Norway has lifted all Covid-related rules (testing, isolation, forms) for foreign tourists. As per the rest of the EU, Britons can visit for up to 90 days, visa-free, in any 180-day period.
“No testing, no quarantining, no registration... From Saturday, February 12, 2022, you can travel to Norway without having to worry about anything more than having a good time!” reads a statement on the tourist board’s website.
If you get ill and test positive for Covid-19 while in Norways, the authorities recommend that you isolate within your accommodation for four days. Although there is no longer a testing requirement, it is recommended that adults with symptoms test themselves, though this does not apply to children.
Iceland dropped all of its Covid-19 related rules on 25 February, meaning that both vaccinated and unvaccinated visitors can go without having to test, quarantine or fill in health forms.
Domestic rules and guidelines have also been eliminated, with a government statement saying: “Minister of Health, Willum Þór Þórsson has decided that as of Friday 25 February all public restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic will be lifted, both domestically and at the border.”
You do not have to be fully vaccinated to visit the UAE. All arrivals to the Emirates must present evidence of a negative PCR test taken no more than 48 hours before departure, regardless of vaccination status. This must be shown at check-in. Antigen tests are not accepted.
Whether you then need to take another test on arrival depends on your entry point: travellers arriving in Abu Dhabi are also required to undertake a PCR test on arrival, but are not required to quarantine; while if you’re arriving in Dubai authorities say you “may be required” to take an additional test.
If you test positive for COVID-19 in Dubai, FCO advice says: “depending on your symptoms and your accommodation plans, you may be required to self-isolate in a government facility, a hospital, your hotel or privately arranged accommodation for at least 10 days”.
Children under the age of 12 arriving in Dubai - or under 16 arriving in Abu Dhabi - and those with severe and moderate disabilities are exempt from the testing requirement.
The rules are different if you are transiting through the UAE - check our explainer on testing for connecting flights here.
Unvaccinated travellers can present a negative PCR test for Covid-19 on arrival to Maldives. The test and negative PCR certificate must be issued no more than 96 hours prior to departure. Only children under the age of one are exempt from this requirement.
All travellers to the Maldives must fill in a Traveller Health Declaration form within the 48 hours before departure.
Israel has allowed unvaccinated tourists into the country again since the beginning of March.
Travellers must provide the following:
- A negative PCR test result taken within 72 hours before departure to Israel; or a positive PCR test result taken between three months and 11 days before the flight (i.e. proof of recent infection); plus
- A PCR test on landing in Israel, followed by quarantine for up to 24 hours until a negative result is received.
- Health insurance with coverage for treatment of Covid-19.
The on-arrival PCR test costs around £20-30.
Visitors must also fill out an entry statement form within 48 hours before their flight to Israel.
Israeli citizens returning to Israel will not have to take a pre-flight test, but only a PCR upon landing.
Throughout the pandemic, Mexico has consistently had the fewest travel rules and next to no paperwork for arriving tourists. Britons travelling to Mexico must complete a health declaration form and scan the QR code it generates upon arrival in the country.
There is currently no requirement to provide a negative PCR test or quarantine on arrival, though some resorts ask guests to complete health questionnaires. Customs officials may also ask to see your proof of accommodation booking or provide contact information for while you are in the country.
This Caribbean nation will allow in unvaccinated visitors who can present a negative PCR or antigen test result from within the 72 hours before travel. Children under the age of seven are exempt from this requirement.
You will need to fill in a COVID Traveller’s Health Affidavit before travel.
However, random testing on arrival is a possibility, with authorities saying: “If a passenger tests positive for COVID-19, they will be required to isolate in an authorised location.”
Egypt will accept a negative PCR or antigen test result from within the 72 hours prior to travel, as an alternative to proof of vaccination. Children under the age of 12 may enter without either a test or proof of vaccination.
Passengers arriving from London Heathrow only are, strangely, permitted to have a PCR test conducted within a longer timeframe - up to 96 hours prior to flight departure.
Tourist arriving directly into the coastal governorates (such as Sharm El Sheikh or Hurghada) are required to pay for an additional on-arrival test at the airport ($30 US), and must self-isolate at their hotel until the result is returned - usually within 12-24 hours.
As of 1 March 2022, this middle eastern kingdom no longer requires a Covid test or even proof of vaccination to visit - though you will need to arrange a visa.
No travellers, regardless of their vaccination status, are required to conduct pre-departure tests and or test on arrival, or quarantine.
However, all non-Jordanian travellers should complete the Travel To Jordan Declaration Form on the Gateway2Jordan platform.
Unvaccinated visitors to Costa Rica aged 18 and older may enter without a Covid test or quarantine period, but must purchase a Covid-19 cover insurance policy that meets the country’s requirements.
This should have “a duration equal to the period of stay in the country, with the exception of passengers in transit, whose minimum validity is five days that covers, at least, medical expenses generated by Covid-19 and lodging expenses due to quarantine”.
It typically means a policy which covers $50,000 for medical expenses, including Covid-19 infection.
Find more information on the mandatory travel insurance rule here.
Travellers aged 12 and over who are not fully vaccinated can show proof of a negative PCR test (taken no more than 48 hours before entry) to enter Peru.
Children aged 11 and under do not need to show proof of vaccination or a negative test result to enter.
You will need to wear two face masks or a KN95 mask on flights bound for Peru and must complete an affidavit to enter or travel through Peru as a visitor.
As of 14 February, India has removed on-arrival testing and quarantine for all visitors, with both vaccinated and unvaccinated holidaymakers instead required to “self-monitor” their health for the first 14 days after arrival.
If you are unvaccinated, you will need to upload a negative RT-PCR test result to India’s online “Air Suvidha” portal before travel, with the test having been conducted within 72 hours prior to your flight. You must also submit a declaration swearing to the authenticity of the test result.
You can enter Belize without proof of full vaccination. The Foreign Office advice states that unvaccinated arrivals “must present a negative result from a PCR test taken within the 72 hours prior to arrival or an approved rapid antigen test (home testing kits are not accepted) taken within the 48 hours prior to arrival, or a test can be administered at the airport for a fee of BZ$100 or US$50 (which must be paid in cash).”
Foreign tourists are also required to pay BZ$36 (US$18) for Belize Travel Health Insurance – this is mandatory even if you already have personal travel insurance.
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