The Department of State has issued a Global Level 4 Health Advisory advising U.S. citizens to avoid all international travel due to the global impact of COVID-19.
Health Alert – U.S. Embassy London, United Kingdom (March 30, 2020)
Location: United Kingdom
Event: Health Alert
U.S. Embassy London will be sending a daily update to ensure all US citizens in the United Kingdom have the latest information about COVID19 and local conditions. Updated information will be prefaced with (NEW). If different or additional information would be useful, please email us with your suggestions at SCSLondon@state.gov.
(NEW) Information on Updated UK COVID-19 Immigration Policies
UK immigration will temporarily waive the overseas requirement for foreign nationals applying for or changing long-term visa categories if they are present in the UK but are unable to depart due to COVID-19. All respective visa requirements and applications fees are unchanged and processing delays should be expected. Tier 4 student visa holders are also permitted to undertake distance learning courses without impacting or mandating sponsorship withdrawal. This arrangement is valid through May 31, 2020. Workers in the UK on visa Tiers 2 and 5 are similarly not subject to sponsor reporting requirements if working from home as a direct result of COVID-19.
The UK government is granting visa extensions for most foreign national visa holders through May 31, 2020. Extensions will be granted for those who are unable to depart the United Kingdom as a direct result of COVID-19. You MUST contact the Coronavirus Immigration Team if your leave to remain in the UK expires between January 24 and May 30, 2020. For information on how to contact the Coronavirus Immigration Team, please visit Advice for UK Visa Applicants and Temporary UK Residents.
Information Regarding Hotel Availability in the United Kingdom
Most hotels in the UK have closed until further notice, per UK government guidance issued on March 23. Travelers are urged to reach out to directly by phone before travel to ensure specific hotels are still operating and accepting guests. The most up-to-date guidance can be found on the UK COVID-19 website.
Information Regarding Flights to the United States
Commercial flights are still available from multiple UK airports connecting to London Heathrow for direct flights to the United States. Trains from Scotland to London are also still available. Please check the airport and rail websites for the latest information:
- London Heathrow
- Belfast City Airport
- Aberdeen Airport
- Edinburgh Airport
- Glasgow Airport
- National Rail
The Department of State encourages all U.S. citizens to enroll in Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security and health updates.
On March 23, the Prime Minister advised that people should leave home only for the following reasons:
- Shopping for basic necessities
- One form of exercise a day
- Any medical need/care for a vulnerable person
- Travelling to and from work, only if absolutely necessary.
The U.S. Mission to the United Kingdom has suspended routine consular services. For emergency American Citizens Services, including emergency passports, please visit our website for additional information at https://uk.usembassy.gov/.
The Department of State has issued a Global Level 4 Health Advisory for COVID-19.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 2 Global COVID-19 Outbreak Notice.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 3 Warning for COVID-19 in Europe advising travelers to avoid non-essential travel to Europe.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 3 Travel Notice for the United Kingdom and Ireland.
Actions to Take:
- Consult the CDC website for the most up-to-date information.
- For the most recent information on what you can do to reduce your risk of contracting COVID-19, please see the CDC’s latest recommendations.
- Visit the COVID-19 crisis page on travel.state.gov for the latest information.
- Check with your airlines, cruise lines, or travel operators regarding any updated information about your travel plans and/or restrictions.
- Visit our Embassy webpage on COVID-19 for information on conditions in the United Kingdom.
- Visit the Department of Homeland Security’s websiteon the latest travel restrictions to the United States
- U.S. Embassy London, United Kingdom
33 Nine Elms Lane
London, UK SW11 8DG
+44 (0) 207-499-9000
from U.S.: 011 44 207-499-9000
- U.S. Consulate General Edinburgh
+44 (0) 131 556-8315
- U.S. Consulate General Belfast
+44(0) 28 9038-6100
- State Department – Consular Affairs
888-407-4747 or 202-501-4444
- United Kingdom Country Information
- Enroll in Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security updates
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