The good news is that the USA is open for travellers and children (who are double-vaccinated) – but you must take a COVID test before arrival.
If you have spent the last two years in lockdown dreaming of the day you can whisk your partner away on a classic American road trip or take your kids to Disney. The good news is that America has finally opened its doors to international travellers again.
If you are fully vaccinated, you can travel to the US from the UK – and you have been able to do so since November 2021. However, when the borders first reopened, there was a 72-hour window in which you could take your COVID test before you flew – and this has now been reduced to 24 hours.
This means you need to make sure that you take your COVID test closer to your time of flight and have a smaller window for the receiving of your result as well.
All other USA travel rules have stayed the same, including unvaccinated adults not being allowed to enter the country and children aged two or over having to take a COVID test before entry.
Do I need to be vaccinated to travel to the US?
Yes. And not just vaccinated but double vaccinated have had both jabs)- unless you are under 18.
You will also need to provide evidence of being fully vaccinated and leave at least 14 days after your second dose of the vaccine before you travel.
The US border control will accept the NHS COVID app or an NHS letter as evidence of vaccination. There are other accepted forms of proof of vaccination if you don’t have either of these, and you can check these out on the Center for Disease Control’s (CDC) website.
Can children who are unvaccinated travel to the USA from the UK?
Yes. Children and teenagers under 18 do not have to be vaccinated, but they will have to take a pre-departure test 24 hours before entering America.
Will I need to show a negative COVID test result to enter the US?
Yes. All travellers over the age of 18 need to show proof of a negative COVID test result and evidence of complete vaccination. The COVID-19 test must be taken no more than 24 hours before you depart for the US.
The CDC states that you “must be tested with a viral test to look for current infection – these include an antigen test or a nucleic acid amplification test (NAAT),” such as a reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test.
Children do not need to show proof of vaccination.
What type of COVID test should I take when I return to the UK from the US?
Residents of the UK no longer need to complete a passenger locator form or take any COVID tests when they return to the UK.
PCR Fit to Fly Test (digital certificate included)
A Nucleic Acid Amplification Test (NAAT) is a viral diagnostic test for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. NAATs detect genetic material (nucleic acids). NAATs for SARS-CoV-2 specifically identify the RNA (ribonucleic acid) sequences that comprise the genetic material of the virus.
The pre-flight gold standard RT-PCR Fit to Fly test available from Fit2FlyTest is a reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) NAAT test. This is the most common test for detecting nucleic acid in a sample. When analysed by Public Health England and Hampshire hospitals NHS Trust our test correctly identified all positive and negative samples without exception. With 100% specificity toward the Sars-Cov-2 Virus, this kit will only detect the presence of the COVID-19 Coronavirus.
Our RT-PCR Fit to Fly test can be self-administered at home via a swab sample, which is then returned to our labs using the prepaid return label. We will have your results within 24 hours of your sample arriving at our laboratories, giving you peace of mind that you can travel safely
- UK Government – USA travel advice
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Non-U.S Citizen: Travel to and from the United States
- U.S Embassy & Consulates in the United Kingdom – COVID-19 Information