England's 'Vaccine Passport' For International Travel

The government has revealed its plan for England's 'vaccine passport' which will involve it being based on the standard NHS app. With the ban on overseas travel set to be lifted on 17th May 2021, they have started to roll out what holidays overseas will require. 


Countries are starting to lay out their regulations for international visitors, such as requiring vaccinations, and/or negative COVID test.


If you are looking to book a COVID test for travel, you can find out more below.

There is no agreement as of yet as to how travellers will be required to prove their vaccinations or test, but the UK government has been working on a short-term fix that is hoping to help ease border restrictions for summer. 

Grant Shapps appeared on Sky News advising "in terms of vaccine certification, I can confirm we are working on an NHS application."

It is hoped the app will be able to show that you have had a vaccine or that you've been tested. The app is that of the standard NHS app, rather than the NHS Covid-19 contact tracing app that has been used for the past few months since its release. 

The government's plan will only apply to England, as the other 3 nations will make their own decisions on how to prove their Covid status certification. 


When will it be ready?

The BBC reported recently that a government source has advised it would not be ready 'imminently'. 

Vaccines Minister Nadhim Zahawi said that work was underway on preparing the app to act as a passport, with plans for it to be able to access the most recent rest results along with vaccine status. Work is taking place to make it operationally possible for the ban on travel to be lifted. 

Zahawi has noted that a number of countries are going ahead with vaccine passports so they would "much rather do it in a coordinated way."


The European Passport

Plans are in place for an EU-wide digital certificate that will go before European Parliament. The key to it will be a QR code containing data, which the EU's Commission says will be safe and secure. It's currently working with the World Health Organisation to ensure this can be recognised beyond Europe. There are 27 member states who want it to include non-EU countries such as Norway and Iceland. 

It's still early days in regards to this coming to fruition, we will bring you more as we know! More details are expected to be released in the next few weeks.

When will travel resume?

The government has outlined that the ban on international travel is due to be lifted on 17th May 2021, with many eager to jet off on their holidays. The countries that are going to be quarantine-free will be revealed "in the next couple of weeks" according to Mr Shapps. 

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