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UK approves Hong Kong vaccines

Hong Kongers will soon be able to avoid quarantine in the UK.

The United Kingdom is the bearer of happy travel news this week.

Hong Kong vaccines have finally been accepted by the UK government and added to its list of countries and territories with approved proof of vaccination.

This means that from 4am on Monday October 11, travellers who have proof of a Pfizer BioNTech vaccination received in Hong Kong will be able to enter the UK without having to take a pre-departure test or quarantine on arrival. Travellers must, however, continue to pre-book a Day Two PCR test before departure.

In total, the UK has included 91 countries and territories onto its approved list, including both Hong Kong and Singapore. This means that travellers from these places will be treated the same as UK citizens and can avoid quarantine as long as they hold official proof of vaccination and are arriving from any country that is not on the red list.

Arrivals must have completed a full course of either Oxford/AstraZeneca, Pfizer BioNTech, Moderna or Janssen at least 14 days before arriving in the UK. Formulations of these vaccines, including AstraZeneca Covishield, AstraZeneca Vaxzevria and Moderna Takeda are also approved, as are mixed doses - for example the first dose could be Oxford/AstraZeneca and the second Pfizer BioNTech. Two approved vaccines from different approved programmes are also accepted, such as one dose of Pfizer BioNTech in Hong Kong and the second dose in Singapore. A single dose of Janssen is considered full vaccination.

Children under the age of 18 years and who are a resident either of the UK or of one of the listed areas can enter the UK without having to enter quarantine or take any tests, regardless of vaccination status.

Arrivals without this documentation or from areas not listed must take a pre-departure test within 72 hours of travel, pre-book and pay for day two and day eight tests which must be logged onto the passenger locator form before arrival in the UK, and enter a ten-day quarantine either at home or wherever the traveller is staying (there is an optional early release scheme to exit quarantine on day five at travellers’ expense).

The full list of approved countries and territories includes Albania, Andorra, Antigua & Barbuda, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belgium, Bosnia, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominica, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Grenada, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Israel, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Kosovo, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Maldives, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, Morocco, Namibia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, North Macedonia, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, St Kitts & Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent & the Grenadines, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, UAE, UK, Ukraine, US, Vatican City, Vietnam.

For more information, check the UK government website.

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