Information about COVID-19 testing and quarantines

The UK Government has announced changes to the testing and quarantine requirements for departing and arriving passengers. You must have a valid reason to travel, and if so have the required test and quarantine arrangements for your journey.

Below is an overview of the guidance for travelling abroad, and arriving into the UK, including key changes to the arrival rules that take effect from Monday 15 February. You can find more information on the UK Government website.

Information about COVID-19 measures in place at Gatwick can be found on our COVID-19 page.

Travelling from the UK Travelling to the UK

Travelling abroad from the UK

If you are planning to travel abroad you should check the rules that apply in your local area before you travel. Different rules apply for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. You must follow all the rules that apply to you.

You must have a valid reason for travel. If you do not have a valid reason for travel you will be directed to return home and may face a fine.

There will be an increased police presence around the airport, and they may fine you if you do not follow the stay at home regulations.

Check your destination - certain destinations require specific tests and the results to be presented in a particular format. Make sure both the type of test and the test provider’s certificate (which could be paper or digital) are accepted by the country you are travelling to. You should follow government travel advice for your destination at all times, which may have changed since your last visit.

Facilities available at Gatwick

There are several COVID-19 testing providers based at Gatwick including:

ExpressTest - Drive through

This drive through facility is located in the South Terminal Long Stay Car Park, offering a PCR swab test. Tests must be booked in advance.

Find out more and book a test

ExpressTest - Walk in

This walk in facility is located in North Terminal arrivals, offering a PCR swab test. Tests must be booked in advance.

Find out more and book a test

Hilton

The Hilton London Gatwick offers a Test & Rest Package which includes a PCR self-testing swab kit and overnight accommodation at the hotel.

Find out more and book a test

Sofitel

The Sofitel London Gatwick offers a Test & Rest package which includes a PCR self-testing swab kit and overnight accommodation at the hotel.

Find out more and book a test

Boots

Get a private PCR swab test at the Boots store located in the South Terminal arrivals area. Appointments must be booked in advance.

Find out more and book a test

You should also check with your airline. They may work with COVID-19 testing providers and may also offer inclusive packages.

NHS testing facilities must not be used for travel related purposes. You should not use private testing if you are displaying COVID-19 symptoms.

Other facilities

Alternatively other COVID-19 test providers may exist in your local area and may include:

Collinsons

Offers a range of tests including PCR, antigen and Lamp.

Find out more and book a test

Sussex Travel Clinic

Offers a selection of COVID-19 testing including instant and laboratory tests.

Find out more and book a test

Bupa

Offers a rapid antibody testing service

Find out more and book a test

 

By clicking a booking link on this page, you are leaving the Gatwick Airport website and making a booking with a third party. 

Travelling to the UK

From Monday 15 February new rules apply to all passengers arriving in the UK.

Anyone arriving into England from outside the UK, Ireland the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands must:

  • quarantine for 10 days*
  • take a Covid-19 test on day 2 and day 8 of quarantine
  • follow the national lockdown rules

*If you arrive from or have travelled through a country on the UK Government Red List in the 10 days before travel then you must complete a mandatory hotel quarantine. All other arrivals must quarantine at home.

Different rules apply in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. You must follow the rules of your end destination.

Are you arriving from a country on the Red List? Check here

NON-RED LIST COUNTRIES

Before you arrive

When you arrive

  • Go directly to the place you are staying to home quarantine.
  • Quarantine at home for 10 days.
  • Take a COVID-19 test on day 2 and day 8 of your 10-day quarantine, using your pre-booked testing package.
  • The NHS Test and Trace will contact you with your COVID-19 test results.
  • Optional - After 5 days, take a private paid test as part of the Test to Release Scheme, more details can be found below.

Optional - Test to Release Scheme

You can take a private paid test 5 full days after arriving from an approved provider. If your result is negative, you can leave quarantine. The scheme is voluntary and only applies to those self-isolating in England. You cannot take a test on arrival or earlier than 5 days. 

Find out more information about the scheme 

To take part:

  • Book a test before you travel with a provider on the Government approved providers list. This list is regularly updated by the Government and includes providers based at Gatwick.
  • Opt into the scheme when you complete your Passenger Locator form before you arrive in the UK.

Facilities available at Gatwick - 

ExpressTest

This drive through facility is located in the South Terminal Long Stay Car Park, offering a PCR swab test and is on the approved list of Test and Release providers.

Find out more and book a test

Gatwick does not have any direct flights from countries currently on the Red List. However if you have visited one of these countries in the 10 days before you travel, then you must follow the rules below:

TRAVELLERS ARRIVING FROM RED LIST COUNTRIES

You cannot travel to the UK if you’ve visited or passed through a country on the red list in the last 10 days, unless you are:

  • a British national
  • an Irish national
  • anyone with residence rights in the UK

Before you arrive

When you arrive

  • Proceed as usual to Passport Control. The UK Border Force will direct you to a G4S representative who will arrange your transport to your quarantine hotel.
  • After your hotel quarantine ends, arranged transport will bring you back to the airport.

Failure to follow the UK Government rules and you may be subject to:

  • £1,000 penalty for any international arrival who fails to take a mandatory test, doubled if they refuse the second test;
  • £5,000 Fixed Penalty Notice, rising to £10,000, for arrivals who fail to quarantine in a designated hotel.
  • Anyone who tries to evade hotel quarantine by concealing that they have been in a country on the red list will be liable to prosecution and could face a prison sentence of 10 years

You cannot take part in the Test to Release scheme if you have arrived from a country on the Red list.