The UK government has reduced the cost of its NHS Covid PCR tests for international arrivals. Whilst the NHS PCR tests are free for those with Covid symptoms, and now for those people who are fully vaccinated but have been in close contact with an induvial who has tested positive, the tests have always been chargeable when used for travel.
The cost of the NHS Day 2 and 8 tests for travel has been reduced from £170 to £136 – these tests are required for non-fully-vaccinated travellers arriving from amber list destinations. Meanwhile the price of a single Day 2 test has been cut from £88 to £68. This test is required for all arrivals from green list countries or those who have been fully vaccinated arriving from amber list destinations.
Travellers can also choose from a long list of private Covid testing providers – the official list can be found here.
The government will also review its list of private testing providers to ensure pricing is accurate and transparent. Health Secretary Sajid Javid has announced the review will see any ‘misleading prices’ being clamped down with those testing providers who are failing to meet the necessary standards will be removed.
“I know how much people have looked forward to their summer holidays and that the cost of PCR testing can be a barrier to that. That is why I am determined to protect consumers and hardworking families from exploitative practices and ensure high quality tests are available at a reasonable price.
“I am pleased to announce that with immediate effect we’re slashing the price of day 2 and 8 tests from NHS Test and Trace by a fifth – this will benefit people right across the UK. And I look forward to reviewing initial advice from the Competition and Markets Authority over the coming days.
“I’ve also ordered my department to urgently review the list of private providers on gov.uk to ensure pricing is clearer and transparent. Any provider found to be misleading the public will be kicked off.”