Proof of vaccination status for travel

Patients wishing to prove their Covid vaccination status can do so in two ways, neither of which require the involvement of their GP.

The first way is by downloading the NHS App, registering for an account and signing in, the second is by calling 119 and asking for a letter to be posted confirming a patient’s vaccination status. Some translations of the letters are available.

Instructions on downloading the NHS App are here, normally via the Apple App Store or Google Play, depending on the operating system of the user’s phone. Registration for the app can take time and patients will need to factor this into any plans they are making. The app was recently updated to add a prominent link saying “Check your Covid-19 vaccine record” to the home screen that patients see after they log in.

There is also a link saying "Share your Covid-19 vaccine status" which allows users to click through some options and either download a PDF letter or display a QR code. At the time of writing details of what function the QR code provides have not been published.

  • The full government guidance on demonstrating Covid-19 vaccination status for travelling is here, including a clear instruction that patients should not contact their GP to get proof of their vaccination status.
  • The guidance states that a very small number of countries are exempting arrivals from PCR testing regimes where they can prove full vaccination via the NHS App or confirmation letter. Note: the UK is among the countries who are not accepting proof of vaccination status, so returning holiday makers are subject to testing, isolation and quarantine regardless of their vaccination status.
  • Patients need to wait until five days after their second vaccination before requesting a letter via 119 and should expect it to take seven working days to reach them.

Template website text:

“The surgery is unable to issue a letter or certificate confirming your vaccination status for overseas travel. Please see Government guidance for further information. Proof of your vaccination status is visible within the NHSapp, which is available for Apple and Android devices.

Alternatively, you can call the NHS Covid-19 helpline on 119 and ask for a letter to be posted to you. This must be at least five days after you have completed your course of the vaccine, the letter may to take up to seven days to reach you.

Please check Foreign Office and local travel advice for specific details of whether proof of vaccination status is accepted at your destination. The majority of countries, including the UK, still require arrivals to participate in a Covid-19 testing, isolation and/or quarantine regime, regardless of their vaccination status.”

Last updated : 19 May 2021


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