The UK has recently announced a test-to-release programme.

Details are available on: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-test-to-release-for-international-travel

I currently have travel booked from Germany to the UK on the 14th December and the government info page says: Scheme start date The Test to Release scheme starts on 15 December. You cannot opt into the scheme before then.

Does anyone know the correct interpretation of this statement? I cannot determine this from the website.

  • If I arrive before 15th December, I simply cannot use the scheme at all, and I must quarantine for the full 14 days,
  • One can only use a test taken after 15th December (i.e. I can arrive on the 14th) to reduce quarantine,

You must indicate on your passenger locator form if you wish to participate in the scheme, however mention is made that "If you decide to take part in the scheme after you have arrived in England, you will need to complete another passenger locator form."

1 Answer 1


I've down some more research, and to answer my own questions, according to an article in the Independent:

The Department for Transport (DfT), which is running the scheme, has confirmed to The Independent that anyone arriving in England between 1 and 10 December will be able to shorten their quarantine by applying for a test on 15 December.


Its a shame that they don't list this policy on their website.

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