Compare the cheapest COVID tests for travel
Compare the UK's most popular private COVID-19 test providers and get the lowest prices for all the tests you need to travel from the UK, under the 18 March rules.
We update our data regularly, but information can change between updates. Confirm details with the provider you're interested in before making a decision.
I’m going abroad from the UK. What do I need to do?
Planning a trip abroad recently hasn’t been plain sailing. Each country has its own requirements for arrivals – many countries and territories will require proof of a negative COVID test before you travel. Some may also require you to show proof of vaccination.
Similarly, there have requirements for anybody entering the UK, depending on where you’re arriving from. But from 4am on 18 March, no-one entering the UK will need to take tests or even complete a passenger locator form. However, this could esily change quickly as the situation evolves – especially if new variants emerge.
So before you head abroad, check what tests are required by the country you’re travelling to. You can look up the country or territory on the gov.uk site to confirm both the entry and return requirements. Rules and lists change often, so it’s wise to check on the relevant government site before you book anything. Then you can use our test comparison tables to find a great deal on the tests you need.
We’ve listed quick links to the advice pages for travelling to the UK’s top 10 travel destinations here:
What are the March 2022 changes?
In March the rules for any arrivals into the UK were relaxed.
Prior to this, as of 15 December, the last remaining countries on the “red” list, which had stricter rules, were removed from it. Transport secretary Grant Shapps sought to clarify that countries may be added back onto the red list if their numbers of cases rise.
Entering the UK
As of 18 March, you won’t need to take a COVID test when entering the UK (although you still can if you want to – say if you’re concerned about vulnerable individuals that you might be visiting). There are no countries on the “red” list, although the government has reserved the option of reinstating it.
The UK advises against all travel to countries on the red list, but no countries are on that list at the moment, so it’s largely theoretical!
If you want to travel to a red-listed country, you’ll need to check what restrictions that specific country has in place. For your return, regardless of whether you’re vaccinated, you must:
- Take a pre-departure COVID-19 test before you travel and bring the negative result to the airport (excludes children aged 10 and under).
- Book a quarantine hotel package (includes day 2 and day 8 PCR tests) and quarantine at that hotel for 10 days when you arrive.
- Complete a passenger locator form with 48 hours before you arrive in the UK.
Rest of the world (green)
If you plan to travel to a country on the “rest of world” list, you’ll need to check what restrictions that specific country has in place.
When you enter the UK from a green list country no tests or passenger locator forms are required, regardless of your vaccination status.
Can I get a free COVID test for travel from the NHS?
Frustratingly, no. The gov.uk site clearly states that free NHS tests cannot be used for this purpose. The NHS only provides free PCR tests to people with COVID symptoms or those who are advised to get a test by a medical practitioner or public agency. If you intend to travel, you have to pay for a COVID test.
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Other frequently asked questions
Outbound tourism statistics
We have carried out research and collected a range of statistics about the holiday habits of UK residents and how many of us plan to travel abroad whilst the COVID pandemic continues to affect the world:
- 9% of Brits plan to travel abroad in the 3 month period of September 2021 to November 2021
- The average UK resident spent 9.7 days abroad in 2019
- £62 billion was spent by tourists from the UK in 2019
- Spain is the most popular foreign country for UK tourists to visit, followed by France
- The total spend by Brits abroad rose by 81% between 2009 and 2019 (from £34.5bn to £62.3bn)
- Double-vaccinated Brits are paying an average of £182.50 on the COVID tests needed to travel abroad
- Our research found you could get direct, return, flights to 192 cities around the world for less than this cost
- Government update for relaxed rules from 18 March
- Government update for relaxed rules from 11 February
- Boris Johnson’s 27 November update
- Government update removing 47 countries from the red list
- Northern Ireland government statement about 4 October changes
- Welsh government statement about 4 October changes
- Grant Shapps’ statement on 17 September
- Government travel guidance
- Government list of test providers
- Finder’s tourism research
- Scottish government guidance
- Welsh government guidance
- Northern Ireland government guidance
- gov.uk 5 January update
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