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Coronavirus – if you enter the UK from abroad

This advice applies to Scotland

There are rules if you're planning to arrive in Scotland from abroad. This includes if you're coming back from a holiday. 

There are different rules in other parts of the UK. If your final destination is Scotland, the Scottish rules apply to you, even if you fly into an airport in another part of the UK.

You’ll need to get tested for coronavirus within 3 days before you enter the UK. You must show your negative test certificate both when: 

  • you board a flight or boat

  • you first arrive in the UK 

Before you arrive, you must fill in a form on GOV.UK called the Passenger Locator form. 

After you arrive, you will also have to stay inside for 10 days at the address you put on the form. This is called 'self-isolating' or 'quarantine'.

If you're coming to Scotland from another part of the UK, Ireland, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man, and you haven't travelled outside these places in the last 10 days, you don't need to fill in the form or self-isolate.

You won’t be able to enter the UK if you’ve travelled from or through certain countries 10 days before you arrive in the UK. This is to help stop the virus from spreading. 

You can find travel advice on the Scottish government website.

Some people don't have to follow these rules. Check if you're exempt on the Scottish government website.

Proving you don’t have coronavirus

You’ll need to show your negative test result immediately when you arrive in the UK. Your test result can be in paper form or digital form - for example, on your mobile phone.

If you don’t show a negative test result, you might be fined and not be allowed to enter the UK. 

Some people don't have to take a coronavirus test before entering the UK. You can find a list of people who don’t need to take a coronavirus test on the Scottish government website. 

Filling in the form 

You must fill in the form on GOV.UK with details of the address where you’ll be staying in the UK.

It’s best to fill in the form before you travel – you can fill it in up to 48 hours before you arrive in the UK. You can also fill in the form when you arrive – there will be computers you can use.

When you complete the form you’ll get an email confirmation to print or show on your phone. You’ll need to show the confirmation to both:

  • your travel provider
  • immigration officials when you arrive in the UK

If you don't fill in the form, you might get a £60 fine.  If you're not a British or Irish citizen, you might not be allowed into the UK.

Self-isolating for 10 days

If you have to self-isolate, you must stay at the address you put on the form.

You can only leave the address for certain reasons, including:

  • getting basic things like food, medicine or pet supplies – if you can’t get them delivered
  • getting medical help – if it’s urgent or your doctor has told you to get help
  • going to the funeral of a close relative
  • if there’s an emergency – for example if it’s not safe to stay inside

You must not meet anyone except the people you’re staying with.

If you don’t self-isolate, you might get a £480 fine. If you keep breaking the rules you could be convicted and fined £5,000.

If you need to move to a different address in the 10 days, you must fill in a new form on GOV.UK.

You can check the self-isolation rules on the Scottish government website.

If you can’t go to work because of quarantine

If you’re self-employed, you might be able to get a payment from the government – check what help you can get if you’re self-employed.

If you’re employed, talk to your employer about what you can do while you're in quarantine. Ask them if you can:

  • work from home
  • be furloughed, if you’ve been furloughed before for at least 3 weeks before 1 July 2020
  • take annual or unpaid leave

There’s no right to paid time off work when you’re self-isolating after entering the UK from abroad.

If you have to take unpaid leave, check if you can get Employment and Support Allowance

You can’t get statutory sick pay or a Self-Isolation Support Grant for being in quarantine after travelling. But you might be able to get them for other reasons, for example if you test positive for coronavirus or are told to self-isolate by the Test and Protect Service.

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