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Returning to the UK soon? Good luck organizing the mandatory quarantine Covid tests


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5 hours ago, Tuvoc said:

I must look again, I didn't see anything under about £160.

 

Try this:

 

https://www.testingforall.org/product/day-2-day-8/

 

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Anyone who is planning to return to the UK in the near future needs to allow plenty of time to read and digest all the new regulations and policies you are supposed to comply with first. I am in

Yes, when I see all those comments I wonder why they stay here if they have such a low opinion of the country and its people.

You can only enter the PCL within 48 hours of your flight. Why would you be doing that now? I am flying back in 2 weeks and will do it at the appropriate time. Already booked my day 2 and day 8 tests,

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1 hour ago, stubuzz said:

Thanks very much for this link and their offering looks good and a reasonable price but I worry that their booking system is rather limited at the moment though I see they are working on improving that.  A 14 day window for booking arrival dates in advance is a bit short and they don't indicate how many test kits per day they have to offer.  I've sent them some questions as follows :-

 

1.       How much is the test pack shipping costs to me?

2.       Will there always be a 14 day window for the booking dates?

3.       How many slots per day do you usually allocate?

4.       If we state an arrival date of 20/6/21 on which date should we expect the kit to be delivered?

5.       Can I purchase more than one kit i.e. for me and my wife and will we each get or own Test Booking References to insert into the Passenger Locator Form?

 

 

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An update on the questions I posed to the home test supplier Testing for All yesterday :-

 

 

1.       How much is the test pack shipping costs to me?         
         No reply so far so if anyone uses them soon please advise us what they are

2.       Will there always be a 14 day window for the booking dates?
          We currently take bookings for arrivals 2 weeks in the future, and will be releasing additional dates every Friday after 17:00

3.       How many slots per day do you usually allocate?
          No reply but I hope they have a good contract with their laboratory partner for supplies

4.       If we state an arrival date of 20/6/21 on which date should we expect the kit to be delivered?
          Tests are shipped on the day of arrival with delivery 24-48 hours and needs a signature on receipt

5.       Can I purchase more than one kit i.e. for me and my wife and will we each get or own Test Booking References to insert into the Passenger Locator Form?
          Reference number can be used for ALL travellers if the test packs are purchased at the same time

 

It's reassuring to get a fast turnaround on my questions so I do hope they can cope with the volumes of requests that may come their way should the Traffic Light List of Green countries prove to be longer than has been rumoured.

 

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4 hours ago, trevoromgh said:

2.       Will there always be a 14 day window for the booking dates?
          We currently take bookings for arrivals 2 weeks in the future, and will be releasing additional dates every Friday after 17:00

 

So with them you can't book a month ahead ? You have to wait until 14 days before arrival, and be quick to get a slot ?

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17 minutes ago, Tuvoc said:

 

So with them you can't book a month ahead ? You have to wait until 14 days before arrival, and be quick to get a slot ?

 

That's the long and short of it currently although they did say they were looking at improving this in the future so watch their website for any changes I guess but I'd identify one or two alternate suppliers in case your arrival date is sold out quickly.

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16 hours ago, Tuvoc said:

 

So with them you can't book a month ahead ? You have to wait until 14 days before arrival, and be quick to get a slot ?

I booked with 001Doc.co a month before I was due to fly. £180. Arrived home on the Friday to find no tests. Phoned them on Saturday to be told that the tests would be delivered on Monday. When I pointed out that my test was due on the Sunday I was told that "Many of our customers have posted their tests late, without any comebacks". This was exemplified when I did my day 8 test last Saturday but missed the last post, meaning the sample wouldn't be collected until the following Tuesday, the day my quarantine ended. I still haven't been contacted by anyone and have no idea of the results of either test. Now, 4 days after completing my 10 day quarantine, I have no idea if I have officialy completed my quarantine or not.

 

Self quarantine in the UK is a complete joke. During my quarantine I had my first dose of the AZ vaccine, saw my GP, went for blood tests, had a haircut, shopped regularly and had several meals with friends and family in local hostelries. The Indian variant reached the UK in this way. Ethnic Indians with British passports taking their annual sojourn in the motherland and returning to "self quarantine" with Covid. Even Pritti Patel admitted in Parliament that the government has no control over the self quarantine process.

 

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On 5/5/2021 at 11:48 AM, trevoromgh said:

Thanks very much for this link and their offering looks good and a reasonable price but I worry that their booking system is rather limited at the moment though I see they are working on improving that.  A 14 day window for booking arrival dates in advance is a bit short and they don't indicate how many test kits per day they have to offer.  I've sent them some questions as follows :-

 

1.       How much is the test pack shipping costs to me?

2.       Will there always be a 14 day window for the booking dates?

3.       How many slots per day do you usually allocate?

4.       If we state an arrival date of 20/6/21 on which date should we expect the kit to be delivered?

5.       Can I purchase more than one kit i.e. for me and my wife and will we each get or own Test Booking References to insert into the Passenger Locator Form?

 

 

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I booked Testing for All a few weeks back and I'm now on day 5 of UK quarantine. At £99 + £5 postage they were by far the cheapest and would expect them to sell out continuously while this is the case. 2 Tests were sent by Royal Mail tracked next day. In my case delivery was on day 2 due to bank holiday Monday.

Edited by Caiman
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3 hours ago, Caiman said:

I booked Testing for All a few weeks back and I'm now on day 5 of UK quarantine. At £99 + £5 postage they were by far the cheapest and would expect them to sell out continuously while this is the case. 2 Tests were sent by Royal Mail tracked next day. In my case delivery was on day 2 due to bank holiday Monday.

 

Thanks for the report Caiman which is a reassuring one about the Testing for All test supplier. Good luck with the rest of your quarantine and hope it all goes well for you.

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@Polpott      It seems you have been less fortunate with your chosen home test provider and I'm surprised to hear they have not provided you with the results of your tests which is a pretty fundamental part of the service surely.  Perhaps you need to report them to the DHSC who put them on the list in the first place although I get the impression from what you said they don't seem to be interested in monitoring quarantine adherence.

 

Out of interest were you given any instructions when you arrived back in the UK about what you are expected to do in the quarantine period?   

 

 

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5 hours ago, trevoromgh said:

@Polpott      It seems you have been less fortunate with your chosen home test provider and I'm surprised to hear they have not provided you with the results of your tests which is a pretty fundamental part of the service surely.  Perhaps you need to report them to the DHSC who put them on the list in the first place although I get the impression from what you said they don't seem to be interested in monitoring quarantine adherence.

 

Out of interest were you given any instructions when you arrived back in the UK about what you are expected to do in the quarantine period?   

 

 

No instructions whatsoever at Manchester Airport. No interest in chasing up my test provider. Quarantine over, end of,

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Update 15th May

 

Well unfortunately Thailand has not been designated a 'Green' country on the new UK Traffic Light Travel List but neither did it appear in the 'Red' list either, yet and we hope it never does.  Therefore its 'Amber' status means no change, i.e. we still need one PCR test 3 days before departure and two PCR tests after arrival in our chosen 10 day quarantine location.   The latest 'fly in the ointment' is this Indian variant which is affecting the UK and I believe Thailand as it seems to spread faster than any type before.  As a result the UK are speeding up their vaccination of everyone who hasn't been done already and shortening the interval between doses as well.

 

In the meantime the Thailand vaccination plan remains unclear as does the availability of vaccine supply to private hospitals where expats were supposing they might get jabs earlier than the eventual national rollout.  Predicted dates are slipping backwards and so I doubt if I shall be registering on any list over here before my return to the UK.

 

The list of approved PCR Test Providers does not seem to be expanding and the prices for those on the list already do not appear to be reducing despite promises made by Boris and others.  The only discounted tests seem to be for would-be UK holidaymakers seeking to go to the few 'Green' list countries but these require people to book through specific travel agents who are not necessarily the cheapest.  Anyway, I'm surprised anyone wants to risk leisure travel right now.

 

During quarantine you will probably rely on friends and family to stock up your larder for your return but if you expect to use supermarket delivery services, think again as their delivery schedules now get booked up months ahead as I found out recently.  I had thought that the large retailers were giving priority to emergency workers and people in quarantine but this is NOT the case (well if Tesco is an example) and so it's every man for himself.   I live in the sticks in the UK so my choice is very limited but I'm sure I'll work something out.

 

If anyone else has updates on this topic I'm sure we'd all be glad to hear your news.  

 

 

 

 

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I've used these people for my Covid Tests:

 

CHHP Certific certified home COVID-19 Tests – CHHP Certific-certified COVID-19 tests

 

Cheaper than many, £139. Not the cheapest but it enabled me to book ahead for 19th June which the £99 one mentioned did not.

 

Thailand's daily cases are still lower than the UK (excluding the prison blip) so despite the low vaccination rate, as long as it remains steady-ish  I can't see it going on the redlist. Fingers crossed !!

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1 hour ago, trevoromgh said:

Update 15th May

 

Well unfortunately Thailand has not been designated a 'Green' country on the new UK Traffic Light Travel List but neither did it appear in the 'Red' list either, yet and we hope it never does.  Therefore its 'Amber' status means no change, i.e. we still need one PCR test 3 days before departure and two PCR tests after arrival in our chosen 10 day quarantine location.   The latest 'fly in the ointment' is this Indian variant which is affecting the UK and I believe Thailand as it seems to spread faster than any type before.  As a result the UK are speeding up their vaccination of everyone who hasn't been done already and shortening the interval between doses as well.

 

In the meantime the Thailand vaccination plan remains unclear as does the availability of vaccine supply to private hospitals where expats were supposing they might get jabs earlier than the eventual national rollout.  Predicted dates are slipping backwards and so I doubt if I shall be registering on any list over here before my return to the UK.

 

The list of approved PCR Test Providers does not seem to be expanding and the prices for those on the list already do not appear to be reducing despite promises made by Boris and others.  The only discounted tests seem to be for would-be UK holidaymakers seeking to go to the few 'Green' list countries but these require people to book through specific travel agents who are not necessarily the cheapest.  Anyway, I'm surprised anyone wants to risk leisure travel right now.

 

During quarantine you will probably rely on friends and family to stock up your larder for your return but if you expect to use supermarket delivery services, think again as their delivery schedules now get booked up months ahead as I found out recently.  I had thought that the large retailers were giving priority to emergency workers and people in quarantine but this is NOT the case (well if Tesco is an example) and so it's every man for himself.   I live in the sticks in the UK so my choice is very limited but I'm sure I'll work something out.

 

If anyone else has updates on this topic I'm sure we'd all be glad to hear your news.  

 

 

 

 

As I said at the start of this thread, your posting has been invaluable  to those of us who are considering returning  to the UK in the near future.

So to clarify, you don't need to be quarantined in a hotel upon your return to the UK.? Just upon your return to Thailand?

You only have to provide two Covid test results and then you can walk away.

But nobody monitors you?

That is weird 

Many thanks

TP

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4 minutes ago, ThaiPauly said:

As I said at the start of this thread, your posting has been invaluable  to those of us who are considering returning  to the UK in the near future.

So to clarify, you don't need to be quarantined in a hotel upon your return to the UK.? Just upon your return to Thailand?

You only have to provide two Covid test results and then you can walk away.

But nobody monitors you?

That is weird 

Many thanks

TP

 

Be careful which airline you use to return to the UK with as both Qatar and the UAE are 'Red' list countries at the moment and even if you are just 'in-transit' through those countries the UK government (as I understand it) will insist that you do quarantine in a hotel on their list at your own expense (1,750 GBPs per person I believe) on arrival and will need to have booked and paid for them before completing the PLF (see previous posts).

 

One PCR test before departure in Thailand and two PCR tests during your 10 day quarantine period in UK and if both negative you can walk away on day 10.

 

I've no idea what monitoring is supposed to be happening. There may be a phone call or two or nothing.

 

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13 minutes ago, ThaiPauly said:

So to clarify, you don't need to be quarantined in a hotel upon your return to the UK.?

 

Not if you fly non stop from Thailand, or only via other amber or green countries.

 

 

15 minutes ago, ThaiPauly said:

But nobody monitors you?

 

Various reports on this with some people checked on but most apparently not.

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16 minutes ago, trevoromgh said:

Another link which might be useful is this one on UK Gov website to sign-up for email updates to the Re-entering the UK Process so to be kept aware of any last minute changes.

 

Fantastic, I've signed up for those emails.

 

If I get an email to say that for example you've got 1 week to get back to the UK as Thailand is going on the redlist, that would involve

(1) probably have to re-book Day 2 and 8 Covid tests with one of the more expensive providers, as the earlier dates would be full with the cheaper provider I chose, cost maybe £250

(2) Thai airways only fly once a week, so probably have to buy a new ticket with KLM or similar, maybe £300

 

£550 still cheaper than a £1,750 mandatory hotel quarantine. But fingers crossed this does not happen !

 

 

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8 minutes ago, trevoromgh said:

 

Be careful which airline you use to return to the UK with as both Qatar and the UAE are 'Red' list countries at the moment and even if you are just 'in-transit' through those countries the UK government (as I understand it) will insist that you do quarantine in a hotel on their list at your own expense (1,750 GBPs per person I believe) on arrival and will need to have booked and paid for them before completing the PLF (see previous posts).

 

 

Indeed, I was holding a return ticket with Qatar airways and had to get a refund on it.

 

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29 minutes ago, treetops said:

 

Not if you fly non stop from Thailand, or only via other amber or green countries.

 

I didn't think Qatar Airways or Emirates did any direct flights to UK but they may have introduced them recently for all I know but indeed in those cases they may well be allowed assuming the crews are fully tested, vaccinated and airplane disinfected in advance.

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20 minutes ago, trevoromgh said:

I didn't think Qatar Airways or Emirates did any direct flights to UK but they may have introduced them recently for all I know but indeed in those cases they may well be allowed assuming the crews are fully tested, vaccinated and airplane disinfected in advance.

 

Never from Thailand, always a change in Dubai or Doha, and they have been banned from taking passengers to the UK on these recently.

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In terms of flights, last time I looked the options are mainly SwissAir, FinnAir and KLM, as well as Thai Airways once a week.

 

I booked Thai Airways because it was direct, and there is no risk of the rules for a transit country changing, and one less airport to be in so reduces Covid risk. However there is a different risk with Thai Airways, they are currently under some sort of bankruptcy protection, and creditors have yet to agree a re-financing plan, so potentially they could stop flying !  None of this is easy.

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On 4/12/2021 at 10:57 AM, NanLaew said:

Thailand was not on the UK's "green" list when that colour was the preferred indicator of being okidoki last summer. This year, it looks like the "red" list is most mentioned so I can only assume that its brevity and the length of the list that dictates how they inform us. Last years green list was shorter than the red one. Right now the converse applies.

 

 

Thousands? Must be watching those YouTubes again no? Anyway, chances are they are UK citizens and residents of Pakistani origin that went to visit families or take a break just like their fellow British citizens of a more Caucasian persuasion did.

Pakistanis  by birth,  family and dual passport

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I still see posts that imply that a PCR test is required in order to fly to the UK.  As the Gov.Uk website says, a rapid antigen test is also acceptable. I had mine done at the Hospital for Tropical Diseases, near Victory Monument - 1500 baht and 2 hour turn around. It was a very smooth and efficient experience.

 

Suvarnabhumi was absolutely dead on Wednesday morning and the security and passport check were super quick.
 

Arriving at Heathrow later that day at 5.15 pm, local time, I was prepared for the ‘6-hour queues’ reported by the media but was surprised to see so many desks open at passport control and sailed through in 8 minutes. However there was a long queue of non-British passenger arrivals and the nice (ex-policeman) Border Force official tells me: ‘there are  still 2 direct flights from India landing every day, but the press don’t seem interested in this.’ This seems rather shocking given the spread of the Indian variant.
 

Given that all returnees are checked for a Covid test certificate and a Passenger Locator Form, the speed of entry was impressive.

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2 hours ago, Londinium said:

I still see posts that imply that a PCR test is required in order to fly to the UK.  As the Gov.Uk website says, a rapid antigen test is also acceptable. I had mine done at the Hospital for Tropical Diseases, near Victory Monument - 1500 baht and 2 hour turn around. It was a very smooth and efficient experience.

 

 

The words in the UK Gov website are quite unintelligible quoting as they do medical terminology only a few people could understand let alone verify, here is an extract from it :-
 

The test must meet performance standards of ≥97% specificity, ≥80% sensitivity at viral loads above 100,000 copies/ml.

This could include tests such as:
a nucleic acid test, including a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test or derivative technologies, including loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) tests
an antigen test, such as a test from a lateral flow device

It’s your responsibility to ensure the test meets the minimum standards for sensitivity, specificity and viral load details. You must check with your test provider that it meets those standards."
 

Added to which my flight is not direct and therefore I need to comply with two countries entry requirements so elected to pay the extra cost for a PCR test rather than risk potential problems when I got to the airport.

 

Glad you got through without a hitch and that the queues were small but depending on how many Brits are determined to go overseas on holiday this year from the 17th things may get a bit busier afterwards, we'll see.

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Same day turnaround for the PCR test is available for the hospital I will go to, as long as I get there when the clinic opens at 9am. Results by 4pm.  Yes I think a rapid antigen test that meets the standard is OK for the UK, but as we've seen sometimes it is the airlines themselves that can be picky. Personally I'd rather pay the extra for the PCR test just to avoid the small chance of any issues. That is 3,300 baht in total from Kasimrad Sriburin in Chiang Rai. Plan at the moment is I'll get that Thursday, fly to Bangkok Friday and stay overnight for the mid-morning flight Saturday.

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On 4/9/2021 at 8:55 AM, roquefort said:

The ridiculous thing is if you live on your own you have to break quarantine to go out and find a special postbox to send the tests to the lab!

 

 

You sure you booked a test? Mine were collected by leaving them outside my door, and so were others i know off. Not one asks you to post them back - other than the NHS ones. 

 

 

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36 minutes ago, AnnieSeek said:

 

You sure you booked a test? Mine were collected by leaving them outside my door, and so were others i know off. Not one asks you to post them back - other than the NHS ones. 

 

 

 

Well all the PCR test suppliers i've checked so far on the UK Gov approved list require the person in quarantine to post the samples back to them using special postboxes locally.  Please feel free to read the following webpages to check what I've said here :-

 https://www.testingforall.org/how-it-works/ 
and  https://myhealthchecked.com/day-2-day-8/  (see Day 2 Self-isolation) 
and https://screen4.org/product/day-2-and-8-covid19-tests-for-international-arrivals/  click on tab 'Getting your Sample back to the Lab'

etc. etc.

 

Which supplier did you use?

 

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48 minutes ago, trevoromgh said:

 

Well all the PCR test suppliers i've checked so far on the UK Gov approved list require the person in quarantine to post the samples back to them using special postboxes locally. 

 

 

Yes that was my observation also. The regulations allow you to leave self-isolation to post the sample back.

 

I did see one provider where they do the test on their own premises, so no postage involved. You are permitted to leave self-isolation to get that done.

 

 

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I've done these three times, and all the times there was a courier to collect. Two of the three times i had knocks on the door by 'them' to check i was isolating, and phone calls every single day. 

 

They have definately beefed it up. 

 

 

 

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