What is a Fit-to-Fly Certificate and what it isn't?

Did you know that the term Fit-to-Fly Certificate for COVID-19 travel testing is actually a misnomer? So what exactly is a Fit-to-Fly Certificate as opposed to a COVID-19 Travel Certificate?

COVID-19 Travel Certificate is simply a document that combines the result of a test that detects presence or absence of the virus (these could be nucleic acid amplification tests such as PCR or LAMP or Lateral Flow Tests such as Rapid Antigen Test) with your personal details and travel document information. In addition, COVID-19 Travel Certificate contains information about the institution performing/reporting the test and technical details about the test.

Standard Fit-to-Fly Certificate is not COVID-19 related. It is a general health assessment made by a registered medical doctor. Medical conditions such as having had a recent heart attack, infection, deep vein thrombosis or a stomach bleed may prevent you from flying as flight would increase the chances of having an adverse incident. Also, if you are pregnant, flying is not recommended after 27-32 weeks and most of the airlines will not allow you to board after 36 weeks. People flying abroad for a medical treatment will also need a Standard Fit-to-Fly Certificate. It’s highly recommended to check your airline’s requirements, if you suspect, you might have a medical condition that can be affected by the flight.

Are NHS Tests Valid for Travel? It is important to note that COVID-19 testing for the purposes of international travel is not available on the NHS and must be done in private clinics. Negative NHS test results are not accepted for travel as they do not contain personal information required by airlines including travel document details.

Where to find information on Travel Restrictions Before planning a journey, it’s crucial to keep up to date with the latest information and travel advice The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCO) is providing and regularly updating.

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