Travel between Australia and the United Kingdom

Travelling has changed, and you may need to do a little more planning and preparation before take-off. Ensure you check and comply with all airline and government travel requirements before arriving at the airport.

Last updated: 30 November 2021
 

Icon

Many countries are taking precautionary steps in relation to the new COVID-19 variant of concern (Omicron). See Travel Updates for more information.

On this page

Qantas vaccination requirements

All passengers on international flights operated by Qantas are required to be fully vaccinated (some exceptions for children and medical exemptions apply). In accordance with Australian Government guidelines, a traveller is not fully vaccinated unless at least 7 full calendar days have elapsed since the last dose of vaccine in a course of immunisation. Learn more about our vaccination requirements.

Customers with a COVID-19 vaccination medical exemption must submit their documentation to Qantas at least 7 days before your flight. We're not able to process exemptions at the airport on your day of departure. See more on applying for clearance to travel.

This requirement relates to flights operated by Qantas on a Qantas aircraft, including those booked via another airline or third-party travel arranger. If you're travelling on a Qantas codeshare flight which is operated by another airline on their aircraft, you'll need to contact them directly to understand and meet their requirements.

You should always check the vaccination requirements for the country you're travelling to, and comply with the most stringent requirements that apply to your trip.

You'll be required to present proof of vaccination at the airport. 

Travel requirements

Before booking and before departure, ensure you check the latest United KingdomOpens external site and AustralianOpens external site government conditions for travel, including any applicable Australian State Government restrictions and requirements, which may include mandatory travel and health declarations, vaccinations, use of face masks, and immigration and entry requirements (which may include renewing your passport, or applying for a visa), or you could be denied entry. This information is subject to change and we recommend you check these websites frequently for any updates.

Tick

From 1 November 2021, fully vaccinated Australians are eligible for international travel without first seeking a travel exemption to leave Australia. Passengers who do not meet the eligibility requirements must continue to follow the current border processesOpens external site.

The following advice applies to passengers who have not been in any countries on the government's 'red listOpens external site' in the last 10 days. If you have been in any of these countries, check the UK Government websiteOpens external site in a new window for more information.

Fully vaccinated passengers

The United Kingdom Government currently doesn’t require a pre-departure COVID-19 test if you are fully vaccinated.

From 04:00 (GMT) Tuesday 30 November 2021, testing and isolation requirements will change for all arrivals into the UK as per the below:

Before departure you'll need to:

If you're travelling on a Qantas aircraft and cannot be vaccinated for approved medical reasons, you'll also be required to submit your exemption documents to us 7 days prior to departure, and show evidence of a negative pre-departure COVID-19 PCR test result at the airport. Your pre-departure test must be taken no more than 3 days prior to departure, or as per the government guidelines of the destination country.

If you're not fully vaccinated

Before departure you'll need to:

Unvaccinated Australian citizens and permanent residents wishing to travel overseas (apart from some exceptions for children and those who cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons) are required to apply for a travel exemptionOpens external site to leave Australia and will not be able to travel on a Qantas aircraft.

Applying for clearance to travel

If you're unable to be vaccinated due to medical reasons or you return a positive pre-departure COVID-19 test result, you may still be able to travel with us in some circumstances:

  • You can request a vaccination exemption due to a medical condition that prevents you from being vaccinated with a COVID-19 vaccine. You'll also be required to show proof of a negative pre-departure COVID-19 PCR test when you check-in. Your pre-departure test must be taken no more than 3 days prior to departure, or as per the government guidelines of the destination country.
  • If you've previously had a COVID-19 infection, you can apply for a medical clearance based on a past positive infection, provided you're no longer infectious and don’t have any symptoms.

We're not able to process any COVID-19 vaccination exemptions or medical clearances at the airport on your day of departure, therefore you'll need to ensure you submit your request at least seven days in advance. Otherwise you may not be able to board your flight.

See more information on COVID-19 vaccination exemptions and past positive medical clearance.

Keep up to date with the latest requirements

It’s important to continue to check the relevant government websites for the latest travel requirements, as these may change closer to your departure date and more information may become available.  

 

Children running on beach with toy plane

Fly Flexible

Peace of mind means changing your travel dates as often as you need, fee-free. Or simply put into credit for when you are ready to rebook. A fare difference may apply, terms and conditions apply.

Find out more

Inflight and airport services

Find out about any changes to your airport and inflight experience.

See inflight and airport services for more information.

Additional information from the United Kingdom Government

Arriving in the United Kingdom

Failure to comply with the following measures is a criminal offence and you could be fined. Visit gov.uk/uk-border-controlOpens external site for detailed public health advice and requirements for entering the United Kingdom. This information is subject to change and we recommend you check the UK GovernmentOpens external site website regularly for any updates.

This information is subject to change and we recommend you check the website regularly for any updates.

Updates for arrivals from 4:00am (GMT) Tuesday 30 November 2021 are in bold.

Essential information to enter England from overseas

Fill in your Passenger Locator FormOpens external site up to 48 hours before arrival. You must declare all countries you have visited or transited through in the 10 days prior to your arrival on your passenger locator form.

Before departure check the list of red countriesOpens external site, as the list can change regularly.

Red list passengers (including passengers who are fully vaccinated)

  1. Provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken within 3 days of departure to the UK.
  2. Book a managed quarantine packageOpens external site
  3. Complete a passenger locator formOpens external site

You can only enter if you are a British or Irish National, or you have residence rights in the UK. You must enter through a designated port and quarantine in a government approved hotelOpens external site for 10 days.

Unvaccinated passengers or passengers vaccinated with unauthorised vaccines

  1. Provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken within 3 days of departure to the UK
  2. Book PCR tests for day 2 and 8Opens external site in a new window
  3. Complete a passenger locator formOpens external site
  4. Make plans to self-quarantine in private accommodation for 10 full days after arrival (or full duration of stay if less than 10 days)

Fully vaccinated passengers who are not red-list passengers

  1. Book a test for day 2Opens external site in a new window - this must be a PCR test
  2. Complete a passenger locator formOpens external site
  3. Self-isolate on arrival and until the result of your day 2 test is known. You may only leave self-isolation if the test is negative.

These measures apply to all persons (including UK nationals and residents) arriving in the UK from outside the common travel area comprising the United Kingdom, Ireland, the Isle of Man, and the Channel Islands. The British Overseas Territories are not in the common travel area. Public health requirements may vary depending upon in which nation of the UK you are staying.

Failure to comply with these measures is a criminal offence and you could be fined. There are a limited set of exemptions from these measures. Check the list of exemptions carefully. You may be fined if you fraudulently claim an exemption.

Other requirements may apply; visit gov.uk/uk-border-controlOpens external site for detailed public health advice and requirements, which may also include renewing your passport or applying for a visa.