Detailed guide: How to quarantine when you arrive in England

Department Of Health

February 12
17:13 2021

You should follow separate guidance if youve been in a country where travel to the UK is banned (sometimes call the red list) at any point in the 10 days before you arrive in the UK. See the red list countries.

From 15 February onwards, everyone allowed to enter England from outside the Common Travel Area must:

  • quarantine for 10 days
  • take a coronavirus (COVID-19) test on day 2 and day 8 of quarantining
  • follow the national lockdown rules

You should follow separate advice if you need to quarantine in:

What you must do before you travel

Everyone must:

  • take a coronavirus (COVID-19) test and get a negative result during the 3 days before you travel
  • book and pay for a travel test package, which will include COVID-19 tests to be taken on or before day 2 and on or after day 8 of your quarantine
  • complete a passenger locator form with details of where you will home quarantine when you arrive and the travel test package booking reference number

Providing false or deliberately misleading information when filling out your passenger locator form is an offence punishable by imprisonment. You could be fined up to 10,000, imprisoned for up to 10 years or both if you do not provide accurate details about the countries you have visited in the 10 days before you arrived in the UK.

If you break the quarantine rules you may face a penalty of up to 10,000.

If youre travelling from somewhere in the Common Travel Area and you have not left the Common Travel Area for the past 10 days, you do not need a test before leaving or to home quarantine and take tests after arriving.

Get a test before travelling

You must have proof of a negative coronavirus test to travel to England this includes UK citizens. You must take the test in the 3 days before the service on which you will arrive in England departs.

For example, if you travel directly to England on Friday, you must take the test on the Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday.

See the jobs with travel exemptions to find out whether your job qualifies for an exemption and what that exemption covers.

Book your travel testing package

Everyone must book a travel test package this costs 210. You must take a COVID-19 test on or before day 2 for variant surveillance and a test on or after day 8 to check that you do not have COVID-19.

If youre experiencing any difficulty booking through the booking portal, please phone +44 (0)1274 726424.

If youre facing significant financial hardship as a result of this charge, there will be an opportunity to apply for a deferred repayment plan when booking. This is only available if you already receive income-related benefits, and you will be required to pay back your debt to the government in 12 monthly instalments.

You must not apply for deferred payment if you are not eligible. If you provide false information, or omit key information which has been asked for in your application, you will be committing fraud and liable for conviction.

You will not be able to leave quarantine until you have received both a negative result from your day 8 test and quarantined for 10 days. If you do not take the tests, you may face a penalty of up to 2,000.

If you test positive for either test you must quarantine for a further 10 days from the day you took the test you will receive further advice alongside your test results.

If your test shows that you have a variant of coronavirus known as a variant of concern you will get a further call and your contacts will be asked to be tested.

Provide details of where you will quarantine when you arrive (passenger locator form)

Before you travel to England you must provide your journey, contact details and the address where you will quarantine by completing the passenger locator form. You must do this within the 48 hours before you arrive.

You must provide a test package booking reference number to complete your passenger locator form.

You may be asked to show these details to immigration officers when you arrive. If you provide false or deliberately misleading information you may be fined or imprisoned.

Quarantine for 10 days after you arrive

When you arrive in England, you must travel directly to the place youre staying and not leave until 10 days have passed.

The quarantine period starts the day you arrive in England and ends 10 days after the day you arrived.This period is necessary because it can take up to 10 days for coronavirus symptoms to appear.

If youre travelling to England for less than 10 days, you will need to quarantine for the whole of your stay. You must travel directly to your place of quarantine when you arrive in England and directly from your place of quarantine to the port or airport when you leave. You should follow safer travel guidance and avoid public transport if possible. If you break the quarantine rules you may face a penalty of up to 10,000.

How to travel to the place where youre quarantining

When you arrive in England, go straight to the place youre staying to quarantine.

Only use public transport if you have no other option. If you do use public transport, wear a face covering that covers your nose and mouth (this is required by law unless youre exempt) and stay 2 metres apart from other people.

If you have coronavirus symptoms, its important that you do not travel by public transport.

If you develop coronavirus symptoms when youre travelling to England, you should tell one of the crew on your plane, boat, train or bus. Theyll let staff in the airport, port or station know, so they can tell you what you should do next when you arrive.

Long journeys to your quarantine accommodation

If you have a long journey within the UK to arrive at quarantine accommodation, you may be able to stop overnight in accommodation where you can quarantine yourself from others before continuing your journey.

Before doing so, you should check that the overnight stay is necessary and permitted under the national lockdown stay at home rules. If so, you must quarantine and provide the address of your overnight stop on your passenger locator form in addition to your declared accommodation address.


This can include:

  • your own home
  • staying with friends or family
  • a hotel or other temporary accommodation that is not a managed quarantine hotel

You must quarantine in one place for the full quarantine period, where you can have food and other necessities delivered.

You must quarantine at the address you provided on the passenger locator form.

You cannot have visitors, including friends and family, unless theyre providing:

Related Articles


  1. We don't have any comments for this article yet. Why not join in and start a discussion.

Write a Comment

Your name:
Your email:

Post my comment

Recent Comments

Follow Us on Twitter

Share This

Enjoyed this? Why not share it with others if you've found it useful by using one of the tools below: