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What changes in October if you’re travelling from Norway to the UK 

A pilot wears a facemask as he arrives at Terminal 5 at Heathrow airport in west London. Travel between the UK and Norway will soon become easier for vaccinated travellers.
A pilot wears a facemask as he arrives at Terminal 5 at Heathrow airport in west London. Travel between the UK and Norway will soon become easier for vaccinated travellers. Photo by Adrian Dennis / AFP
Monday, October 4th, heralds a relaxation of the UK government's travel rules for arrivals from Norway and elsewhere, but be aware that there are still restrictions and testing requirements in place. 

Norway is currently on the UK’s green list for travel, meaning those arriving from Norway who aren’t vaccinated or received mixed doses do not need to be quarantined. 

Travellers still need to take a Covid-19 test in the three days leading up to their journey to the UK and fork out for a day two test, which must be taken after arrival and be ordered before the Passenger Locator Form is filled out.

Meanwhile, if you currently travel to England from an amber list country such as France, you must also take a pre-departure Covid test, complete the locator form and book and pay for a Day 2 test. 

Fully vaccinated arrivals can leave it there, but unvaccinated people must quarantine for ten days and pay for further tests. You also need to be ‘fully vaccinated’ by UK standards (more on that below).

What are the new rules? 

The announced rule change is for England. However, if you are travelling to ScotlandWales or Northern Ireland, click on the relevant link.

The green and amber lists will be scrapped, and there will be two new categories; red countries and the rest of the world. 

Norway will be in the rest of the world category. The rules become slightly laxer for fully vaccinated arrivals but much tougher for those who are not jabbed or who have only jab after recovering from Covid.

Vaccinated passengers

Fully vaccinated passengers will no longer need to take a pre-departure test and show it on boarding. This will save travellers in Norway up to around 1,000 kroner per trip, depending on where they get tested. 

You will still need to book and pay for the Day 2 test before leaving. 

At the border, you will be asked to show the Passenger Locator Form. This form can’t be filled out until you’ve booked the test for day two. 

The booking system is infuriatingly unhelpful, and the cost of tests is often expensive, and in some cases, you can toss a coin on whether they will arrive on time. 

The Day 2 test must be ordered even if you are in England for less than two days. 

The UK government has said that in the future, Day 2 tests could be the cheaper antigen (lateral flow) tests rather than PCR tests, but there is no firm start date for this policy. However, travellers will still be advised to spend a bit more to get a test from a reliable provider. 

Unvaccinated arrivals 

People who are not vaccinated (or do not meet the UK government definition of being vaccinated – see below) will have to quarantine for ten days on arrival, this can be done at a private home, and you do not need to go to a hotel.

In addition, they will have to book and pay for both a Day 2 test and a Day 8 test before leaving.

There is an option to pay extra for a Day 5 test and end quarantine early, but be warned that quarantine does not end on Day 5, it only ends when the test results arrive. Many readers have reported long delays in getting test results, leaving them spending 9 or 10 days in quarantine anyway but having paid more for an additional test.

Who is vaccinated?

The UK government accepts people as ‘fully vaccinated if they have received either Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca or Johnson & Johnson vaccines and received their final dose at least 14 days ago.

The Norwegian or EU vaccine certificate is accepted as proof at the border.

After a confusing period, the UK government now accepts as fully vaccinated people who had a ‘mixed dose’, i.e. one dose of AstraZeneca and one of Pfizer or Moderna.

It should be noted that people who only received a single dose after previously recovering from Covid-19 do not count as vaccinated in the eyes of UK government even though they are in Norway.

From the UK to Norway 

Anyone who is a resident of the UK can enter the country regardless of vaccination as of September 25th. 

However, there are still several rules regarding testing and quarantine. 

We’ll start with the rules for fully vaccinated travellers as they are the easiest. Fully vaccinated travellers with a digital EU or UK Covid certificate are exempt from all entry restrictions and requirements. 

EXPLAINED: What are Norway’s new travel rules?

All other arrivals from the UK will need to quarantine for a minimum of three days before returning a negative PCR test. This can be done at home, somewhere with a private bedroom, bathroom and place to prepare food, or quarantine hotel. 

Travellers will also be required to take a test at the Norwegian border and fill out the entry registration form, which you can look at here


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