Updated 7/28/21: The UK confirmed that starting on August 2, 2021, fully vaccinated arrivals from the U.S. and other “amber list” countries will be able to skip quarantine, although they will still need to have negative results from a COVID-19 test prior to flying, and take another COVID-19 test two days after their arrival, at their own expense.
The UK Could Allow Fully Vaccinated Americans to Enter the UK as early as August 2021 without quarantining, if they show with their vaccine cards that they have received all doses of a vaccine approved in the UK, and are at least two weeks past their final dose. If so, we'll add the UK to our Destinations Open to Vaccinated U.S. Travelers.
Currently Americans can visit the UK (although the CDC warns not to, assigning the UK its Level 4 Very High Level of COVID-19 warning) but requires a 10-day quarantine (under the “test to release” system, if their Day 5 test is negative, they can exit quarantine early). If UK ministers sign off later this week, U.S. citizens could be allowed to present their vaccine card as proof of vaccination, since the U.S., unlike most European countries, has not yet implemented a consistently used digital Covid certificate. The UK's National Health Service (NHS) has a COVID-19 digital passport that is recognized by 33 countries, including France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Portugal, Spain, and others.
Many EU countries have already allowed fully vaccinated U.S. travelers or those who provide negative results from a COVID-19 test taken soon before arrival to enter, without needing to quarantine, increasing pressure on the UK to follow suit.
That said, the reopening to Americans may still fall through given that the U.S. has indicated it will keep borders closed to most non-citizens, even those fully vaccinated, due to the Delta variant. The UK is most prepared to open up to fully vaccinated visitors from countries that accept the NHS COVID passport app and allow in fully vaccinated British visitors.
We have clients with UK business travel booked for later this year, so we'll be monitoring this closely.
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