Travel Rules

Are group or family discounts available?

Some providers will offer discounts when you purchase multiple tests. We do not currently list these on our website, so please check directly on your chosen provider’s site.

Travel Rules

Do I need a Covid-19 test if I’m travelling by car?

All restrictions and rules apply whether you’re travelling by air, motor vehicle, or boat (including cruise liners and ferries). Some countries may have slightly different rules depending on how you are travelling so always make sure to check the entry requirements before booking your test.


Do I need to buy all my tests from the same provider?

No, you can buy the tests you need through different providers. Some of them do offer testing packages at a reduced price. We do not offer testing packages on our website, so you will need to check in providers’ websites directly.


My test kit/test result has not arrived. Can you help me?

You will have to reach out to the provider you booked the test with directly. All test bookings are made directly with the test provider, under the terms and conditions of that provider and as such we cannot enter into communications regarding any individual test booking. We do not have access to any personal information relating to test bookings. The test provider shall be solely responsible for providing an end to end service to you in respect of the provision of all tests and results and we shall have no responsibility or liability in this regard.

If you want to have a backup plan, see other providers here.

Travel Rules

Do children count as vaccinated or unvaccinated?

This varies by country, as countries will see the vaccination status of children the same way as that of adults (2 doses to be fully vaccinated), whereas others accept only one dose as fully vaccinated. You will need to check the specific requirements for children for the country you are travelling to. You can do that by following our question flow here.


What are the opening hours for providers?

We have information on opening hours for some providers on our website, but for most of them you will need to check directly on their websites. Please take into account that most providers will operate normal UK working hours, and have a reduced service or be closed for weekends and bank holidays.


Where is my nearest clinic?

You can search testing clinics near you using the postcode search on the menu on the left (if you are on desktop) or at the bottom of the page (if you are on your phone). Just click ‘in-clinic’ and type in your postcode. You can also organise the providers by price.


How can I find drive-through and park & test sites, or my nearest drop-off/ click & collect location?

You can use the postcode search function to find these kinds of sites near you. We don’t have a filter for them, but it will be clearly stated in the provider name if the location is a clinic, drop-off, click and collect, drive-through or a park & test site.


How can I find out if a provider is UKAS accredited? What about ISO accreditation?

If a provider is UKAS accredited, they will usually mention this on their websites as well as which ISO standards they meet. The most common ISO standards are 15189 and 17025. Alternatively, you can find a list of UKAS approved laboratories here.


What does Verified/Trusted mean?

Providers with a Verified stamp on their listing have confirmed that their listing information is accurate, and regularly update us to incorporate any changes to pricing or specifics.

Covid Testing Network displays customer satisfaction scores for trusted test providers so the consumer can be assured of quality service from the test provider they select.  Providers who are marked as 'Trusted' indicate that they are the best in class provider of Covid-19 testing as evidenced by the customer satisfaction scores.


How can I tell if a provider is on the government list?

All test providers added to our site appeared on the list of providers of General Covid-19 lists for international travel.

You can also check whether a provider is in the government lists here.

Travel Rules

When do I need to take my test?

That depends on where you are flying to, as different countries have different timing requirements. You can check the requirements for the country you are visiting by following our question flow.

Turnaround times will vary depending on the provider. Our 'more details' page has more information around what turnaround times each provider offers. For further information, please make sure to check the turnaround time guarantees on a provider website before booking your test.

Travel Rules

What are the rules for returning to the UK?

You do not need to take a test or fill out a questionnaire before returning to the UK, or quarantine once you arrive to the UK, no matter your vaccination status.

Travel Rules

What are the rules for children returning to the UK?

Rules for children returning to the UK are the same as for adults. There are no requirements to test, quarantine or fill out a questionnaire.

Travel Rules

I’ve recently had Covid. Am I exempt from taking a fit to fly test? What about the 90 day no-test guidance from the NHS?

Whether or not you need a fit to fly test may depend on the country you are travelling to. Some countries do not require a test if you are fully vaccinated, others will accept proof of recovery instead of a negative test result. Alternatively, a number of countries may also accept rapid antigen test results. As these are less sensitive you have very little chance of still testing positive from a rapid test. Some countries also accept recovery certificates. You can see more info on recovery certificates here.

If none of these exceptions are accepted, you will need to take a PCR test regardless of your recovery status. 

You can see more information here.

Travel Rules

What is a recovery certificate? Where can I get one?

Some countries accept a recovery certificate instead of a vaccination or test certificate. Some of these will accept the NHS Recovery Certificate in the app, but remember you will only be able to use it for international trouble if you confirmed your diagnosis with a PCR from the NHS. A positive from an LFD test will not show up in the international travel section of the app. If that is your case, you might need to purchase a recovery certificate from a private provider. You can see a list of providers who offer recovery certificates here.

You can see more info on recovery certificates here.

Travel Rules

Can I use an NHS test for travelling?

There are strictly limited circumstances under which you can use a free NHS Covid-19 test (whether a lateral flow or a PCR test). This includes having Covid-19 symptoms or having been in contact with someone who has tested positive for Covid-19. For all other reasons — including to travel — you must book and pay for tests yourself via a government listed private provider.


What is the difference between PCR, RT-PCR and rapid antigen tests?

PCR tests look for viral RNA inside a sample. In order for this to happen, the sample needs to be sent to a lab for analysis. Results are usually turned around from 24h to 72h. 

A RT-PCR is a type of PCR test. Most Covid PCR tests are RT-PCR, as it is the standard method used for detecting the genetic material of the virus. There is not an agreed naming convention for PCR tests, which means that some providers might shorten it to PCR even if the method used is RT-PCR.

Rapid antigen tests look for a certain protein and work a bit like a pregnancy test. Antigen tests do not need to be sent to a lab and results are provided in around 30 minutes. Antigen tests are considered to be less sensitive than PCR and therefore not all countries accept them for entry. 


What is a self-test? What is the difference between a supervised and unsupervised test?

A self-test is a test you take yourself, either at home or at a clinic with supervision from a clinician. Some countries do not accept self-tests, so you will need to make sure the clinic provider you choose will include a clinician to take your sample.

An unsupervised test is one you take at home, or at a provider location without a clinician present. Some home test providers offer live video supervision. Always make sure to check with the provider before you book your tests to avoid disappointment.


Do providers offer a QR code?

Some providers featured on our website do offer QR codes with their result. You can check this directly on their websites.


How long will test results take?

Turnaround times will vary depending on the provider. PCR tests can take anything from 6 hours to 72h and the price will vary depending on which option you choose. The standard is usually 48h-72h. Rapid antigen tests provide much faster results and you should be provided with these the same day of your test. For further information, please make sure to check the turnaround time guarantees on a provider website before booking your test.


Can I buy general (not for travel) tests?

A number of private providers and pharmacies are now offering LFT (rapid antigen) tests you can buy individually or in multipacks, in order to always have peace of mind when visiting loved ones, attending events, or whenever you need. 

You can compare General Testing Providers here:


Cannot find the answer to your question?

We have a handy question flow to help you find out pre-travel and post-entry requirements for all travel destinations. Click below to find out!

You can also check out our Resources section, with articles explaining different aspects of Covid-19 testing, or visit our Glossary for explanations on common Covid-19 terms.

If you still cannot find the answer to your question, please email our team on [email protected]


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