Which Countries Accept Rapid Antigen Lateral Flow Tests?

As we begin to travel in a post-COVID world, it's important to understand which countries accept an antigen test before making your next trip.

Dr Alasdair Scott MBBS FRCS PhD

February 3rd, 2022

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As we all return to normality after a tumultuous two years, we can begin to explore the world again and travel with a little more confidence. But with a constantly changing list of travel restrictions and COVID regulations to follow, it can be difficult to plan ahead.

Understanding which countries accept an antigen test is one of the most important things to learn in this post-COVID world.

So let’s look a little deeper into what antigen testing is, the countries that accept antigen tests, and learn to travel safer.

What is an Antigen Test?

A rapid antigen lateral flow test can determine whether someone is infected with coronavirus. As it’s a very straightforward and fast test, it can typically offer results within fifteen minutes.

A rapid antigen lateral flow test

You can read more about rapid antigen tests in our ultimate guide to rapid antigen tests.

Is an Antigen Test Accepted for Travel?

When it comes to an antigen lateral flow test, countries are somewhat divided about them.

So, is an antigen test accepted for travel across the world? No. However, many countries do accept them.

Does the UK accept an antigen test upon arrival? Yes, in the United Kingdom, this is an acceptable type of test for unvaccinated individuals who need to prove negative coronavirus status before departure. But what about other countries you may be travelling to?

Which Countries Accept an Antigen Test? The List

While this list of countries that accept antigen tests is accurate at the time of writing, please be sure to double-check the latest information on the UK Government website to stay up-to-date.

Countries That Accept Antigen Tests for Travel

Albania

Unvaccinated individuals need to demonstrate proof of a negative rapid antigen test taken within 48 hours of arrival.

Antigua and Barbuda

Antigen testing is required within 96 hours before departure, via a professional swab. However, fully-vaccinated passengers with negative antigen tests may still be asked to take a PCR test for SARS-CoV-2 upon arrival.

The Bahamas

Antigen testing is needed within 72 hours of arrival in The Bahamas for fully-vaccinated travellers. This isn’t applicable to those unvaccinated.

The Bahamas

Belgium

Antigen testing is required within 24 hours before arrival into the country for unvaccinated travellers. There’s no need to test if you can show proof of vaccination.

Belize

Unvaccinated individuals require an antigen test taken within 48 hours of arrival (but home test kits aren’t valid).

Brazil

Antigen testing is needed at least 24 hours before departure. This is only valid for vaccinated passengers – those unvaccinated will most likely be refused entry.

British Virgin Islands

Before departure, vaccinated people will need a rapid antigen test 48 hours prior, and a certified negative COVID test. That test needs to be certified five days prior to arrival for people coming from low-risk countries – and within three days prior to arrival for people from high to medium risk countries.

Unvaccinated people will need to take a PCR test three to five days before departure, and take tests on arrival. In addition to this, they’ll need four to seven days in quarantine upon arrival.

British Virgin Islands

Bulgaria

There’s no testing required before departure if you’re fully vaccinated. Unvaccinated travellers require a negative rapid antigen test result, taken within 48 hours of arrival.

Cape Verde

While their borders are open to travellers, you’ll need a rapid antigen within 48 hours of arrival. This applies to both vaccinated and unvaccinated.

The Cayman Islands

Antigen tests are needed 24 hours before departure. Again, applies to vaccinated and unvaccinated travellers, with a mandatory quarantine period upon arrival.

Croatia

There’s no testing required before departure if you’re fully vaccinated. Rapid antigen testing is required 24 hours before arrival for unvaccinated travellers.

Cyprus

There’s no testing required before departure if you’re fully vaccinated. Proof of a negative rapid antigen test taken 2ithin 24 hours of departure is required for unvaccinated travellers. PCR tests are also required upon arrival at the airport.

Cyprus

Denmark

No COVID tests are needed for vaccinated travellers. Those unvaccinated will need to complete a rapid antigen test within 24 hours of arrival.

Finland

Unvaccinated individuals need to take an antigen test less than 72 hours before arriving in Finland.

France

Recent changes mean that fully vaccinated UK travellers will no longer need to present a negative PCR or antigen test upon arrival – just proof of their vaccinations. Those unvaccinated will need to provide a negative RT-PCR or antigen test taken in the 48 hours preceding arrival. All travellers need to complete a self-declaration of the absence of COVID-19 symptoms.

French Polynesia

A PCR or rapid antigen test must be taken within 24 hours of your departure.

Greece

Both vaccinated and unvaccinated travellers must provide evidence of a negative PCR or antigen test within the 24 hour period prior to arrival.

Greece

Guadeloupe

Travellers need to provide a negative PCR/antigen test taken in the 48-72 hours preceding arrival – and complete a self-declaration form before entry.

Guatemala

Upon arrival, you’re required to present a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR or antigen test, dated no more than 72 hours before the date of your arrival.

Guyana

Vaccinated people are given immediate entry if they arrive with a negative test, completed within 72 hours.

Haiti

A negative PCR or antigen test is required before entry into Haiti which must be taken within 72 hours of departure. This applies to all passengers.

Honduras

You must present a negative COVID-19 antigen test result upon arrival which must be take within 72 hours of arrival. Proof of vaccination is also required.

Iceland

There are no COVID-19 related travel restrictions for Iceland.

Iceland

Italy

Unvaccinated passengers are required to complete an antigen test within 48 hours of arrival. All UK passengers travelling to Sicily must complete an antigen test upon arrival.

Jamaica

All will be required to upload a valid antigen or RT-PCR test no more than 3 days before their arrival. Those unvaccinated also need to quarantine for 14 additional days.

Lebanon

If unvaccinated. you’ll need to take an antigen test 24 hours before you travel.

Lebanon

Luxembourg

No test is needed for vaccinated passengers – as long as proof is provided. Those unvaccinated will need to provide a negative antigen test taken 24 hours before their arrival.

Moldova

Proof of vaccination is required, or a negative antigen test result taken 48 hours prior to arrival.

The Netherlands

Antigen tests are required to be taken 24 hours before departure for vaccinated individuals. Those unvaccinated aren’t permitted entry, without compassionate exemption.

The Netherlands

Panama

Unvaccinated people will need to provide an antigen test taken 72 hours prior to departure. Vaccinated people won’t be required to do this, provided they’ve documented their WHO, EMA or FDA approved jabs digitally.

Paraguay

Vaccinated people must take an antigen test 24 hours prior to arrival, and provide official documentation of their vaccinations. Those unvaccinated aren’t permitted to enter Paraguay (with the exception of emergency cases).

Poland

An antigen test needs to be taken 24 hours before arrival.

Portugal

You’ll need to show proof of your vaccinations, before entering Portugal. Those unvaccinated will need to take an antigen test 24 hours before they travel. Self-administered tests won’t be accepted.

Portugal

Réunion

Fully-vaccinated passengers with a negative PCR or antigen test are permitted entry. However, the authorities still recommend that people only travel there for emergencies.

Singapore

Singapore currently has limited access across their borders. If you must travel, you’ll need proof of a negative PCR or antigen test taken 48 hours before departure.

St. Vincent and The Grenadines

A negative antigen test result is required for vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals.

Sweden

As long as you have proof of a vaccination that’s from an approved European Medicines Agency or a negative antigen test result, you’re permitted to enter Sweden, for any purpose.

Sweden

Tunisia

A negative antigen test that has been taken 48 hours before your arrival is required for vaccinated people. Those unvaccinated will need to do this and then quarantine for five days upon arrival.

The Turks and Caicos Islands

You must be fully vaccinated and have a negative PCR or antigen test from at least three days before your departure.

Ukraine

A negative PCR or antigen test is required that has been taken within 72 hours of your departure time for unvaccinated travellers.

The United States of America

Does the US accept lateral flow tests? Yes. Fully vaccinated travellers will be permitted entry to the USA with a negative rapid antigen lateral flow test taken 24 hours prior to arrival. However, tests for the USA must be supervised.

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