More countries around the world are insisting that visitors to their countries are swabbed for COVID-19 and present a NEGATIVE PCR test on arrival.

As holiday destinations start to allow more international travellers to enter their countries the potential for further COVID 19 infections could increase. Therefore, mandatory PCR tests are being requested prior to departure and only those with a NEGATIVE result will be able to fly and enter the destination of choice.

Currently PCR testing is not a global standardisation and currently it is mostly favoured by the Caribbean islands, Bermuda, the Seychelles, Mauritius, the Maldives. Cambodia, Cyprus and Jersey also request a NEGATIVE test result before you can enter.

It is only a matter of time before the UK government also implement mandatory testing. If the testing process is reliable it could minimise the period a traveller has to quarantine when arriving in the United Kingdom. A relief for any traveller I'm sure.

Can I use the NHS for a test and travel document?

NO! NHS tests are NOT for those wishing to travel overseas. COVID-19 tests via the NHS are ONLY for those who are symptomatic or have been asked to have a test by their GP or local authority (Hospital or council). If you are symptomatic you should not leave the country. You should isolate immediately.

Anyone who needs a PCR test for work or travel should pay for a test privately. It is very important that you do not attend your appointment if you are displaying COVID-19 symptoms.

How much does the test cost?

Costs for COVID-19 testing can vary across the country. However, they range from £120 - £250pp with extra costs for location of test site and to issue a 'Fit to Fly' Certificate. These extras could cost anything from £25 - £100 on top of the test.

Before booking please ensure that the sample will be processed by a UKAS accredited laboratory. Otherwise, the result may not be valid.

How do I know what I need and what the time period is?

It is important to check with your airline or the government website to get the most up to date information in relation to travel restrictions and requirements.

Entry requirements and restrictions can change daily, so please check consistently before your departure. Tests need to be done within a specific timeframe. This can differ from country to country, from 48 - 120 hours before flying. It is advisable to book your test well in advance of your flight and take the test as soon as you can within the test window to avoid disappointment.

How long does the result take?

Samples can take anything up to 72 hours to process. However, DA Screening guarantees results within 48 hours. Results will be sent via email directly to the donor along with an attached PDF which contains the 'Fit to Fly' Certificate. This should be downloaded and printed out. We suggest 3 copies per donor. One for the airline in exchange for your boarding pass, the second copy will be for the country of destination, even though sometimes they do insist that you are screened again on arrival. The third copy is yours to keep as a record and also should you need to show proof at your hotel etc. Customs will NOT accept results on your phone, so please make sure you have plenty of hard copies to hand.

There is also a small percentage of samples that are returned as inconclusive. If this happens in your case, please rebook another appointment and have the test done again. This could mean that there is not enough time for the results to come back and for you to catch your flight. Therefore, it would be advisable to move your flight. Most airlines are very understanding, just mention 'COVID test' and most of the time they will rebook with no administration costs involved.

If the test is POSITIVE

If your test comes back from the lab with a POSITIVE result you will NOT be allowed to travel. As for getting your money back from the airline or travel company you will have to read their cancellation policy or speak to them direct and see if they can amend your flight without further costs or loss to yourself. You would also have to self isolate in accordance with the government guidelines.

Should you experience difficulty in breathing or have chest pain please contact the NHS 111 directly or call the ambulance on 999

More information can be found at the following NHS websites

If you require PCR testing please contact us for further information or go directly to our online booking portal and make an appointment. We will gladly assist.

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