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Fit to fly certificate

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What is a fit to fly certificate?

A fit to fly letter is a medical certificate written by a doctor that confirms your fitness to fly. Our doctors can verify if you are able to fly safely by reviewing your symptoms, medical history and examination if appropriate. If you are fit to fly, we will email your certificate to you same-day.

Medicspot has hundreds of walk-in doctor clinics across the UK. We’re open 7 days a week and will be happy to assist you in assessing your health and advising you on your fitness to fly. We can provide same-day appointments at hundreds of locations to ensure your travel is not affected.

When do I need a fit to fly certificate?

If you have experienced or are experiencing a health condition that may affect your heart or lungs, you may need a fit to fly letter in order to travel. You may also need a fit to fly certificate if you have had recent surgery that affects the chest, abdominal area, eyes or lungs. The cabin pressure in an aeroplane can result in less oxygen in the blood and these health conditions may be made worse when you fly.

What medical conditions stop you from flying?

The following medical conditions and circumstances may prevent you from flying:

  • Infectious diseases such as the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) or influenza
  • COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease)
  • Strokes
  • Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)
  • Recent surgeries
  • Pregnancy
  • Gastroenteritis
  • Other illnesses (e.g. tonsillitis, chest infection)

Fit to fly certificate for pregnancy

If you are planning to fly when pregnant, airlines may not allow you to fly if you are 36 weeks pregnant or if you are carrying twins and are in your 32nd week of pregnancy even with a fit to fly certificate. This is because there is a risk of going into early labour or having a blood clot.

How to get a fit to fly certificate?

You can get a fit to fly certificate with Medicspot. Here’s how it works:

  1. Book a same day private GP appointment at your nearest Medicspot clinic
  2. Visit your chosen clinic and get assessed by one of our doctors
  3. You will then receive a call from our patient support team regarding your health certificate. If you have been confirmed as fit to fly, you can pay for your fit to fly certificate and receive it via email on the same day
  4. If our doctors determine that you have a medical condition that may put you or others at significant risk if you travel, we will be unable to provide you with a fit to fly certificate.

How much does a fit to fly certificate cost?

To receive a fit to fly letter, you will need to be assessed by one of our private doctors for £49. You can book your private doctor consultation here.

There is an additional £49 charge to receive your letter.

When will my fit to fly certificate expire?

Your fit to fly certificate shows you are fit and able to fly around the time of your flight. A fit to fly letter may not be accepted if it was given to you a few weeks or months before you are set to travel. With the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, some airlines and countries may specify how recent your fit to fly certificate must be. If your health condition is long-term, you may need a new health certificate each time you fly.

What is a COVID passport?

An immunity passport is based on the idea that there could potentially be a document or certificate that shows “proof-of-immunity” towards the new coronavirus. The assumption is that those who have been infected with the COVID-19 virus and have recovered, have immunity to the virus and will not infect others or be re-infected. This would enable people with these COVID-19 passports to return back to work and normal life. It could potentially allow for the reduction of travel restrictions for those with immunity passports.

The talk of issuing an immunity passport has come up within EU member states as a way to mitigate the catastrophic effects of the virus on the economy. The Croatian Tourism Prime Minister asked for a common protocol on travel, which is the COVID-19 passport. However, an immunity passport has not yet been decided on as experts are wary of issuing immunity passports.

In order to certify immunity to a virus or disease, you will need to be tested. A serological test will be able to test for antibodies in your blood. If you have COVID-19 antibodies present, then it is possible that you have immunity to the virus. However, even if you do have immunity; it is uncertain how long this immunity will last.

Why are experts cautious about immunity passports?

Experts are cautious about issuing immunity passports as the World Health Organisation (WHO) has said that there is no evidence that people who have recovered, i.e. have antibodies, will not be infected again.

Issuing immunity passports can also create a health and safety risk for those who are desperate for work at this time. They may try to purposely infect themselves to get an immunity passport when they recover so that they can return to regular work.

Can I get an immunity passport for COVID-19?

Currently, there is no way to get an immunity passport for COVID-19 as the World Health Organisation (WHO) has warned that there is no evidence to show that people who have had the virus are protected from a second infection. Issuing immunity passports can create a health risk as it may appear that people are protected when they are not.

I have recovered from COVID-19, am I immune?

If you have been infected with the coronavirus and recovered, you may have high levels of antibodies in your system that your body made to fight off the infection. However, as the virus has only been in circulation for a relatively short period of time; there is no evidence to show if this makes you immune or not. Reports from China and South Korea have shown some patients who have recovered from COVID-19 have tested positive again.

COVID-19 travel advice

The following information was last updated on 20th March 2020.

With the outbreak of the new coronavirus, you should avoid all non-essential travel. However, if travel is unavoidable, there are certain measures you should take in order to reduce the spread of the virus as well as your risk of exposure to the virus.

UK travel advice for coronavirus

  • Keep up to date with travel restrictions and official advice given by each country you are travelling to and departing from during the COVID-19 outbreak.
  • You can check the FCO (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) for travel advice if you are planning to travel from the UK
  • Contact your airline, transport service or accommodation for any restrictions that may affect your itinerary.
  • Be aware of the enhanced screening, monitoring and quarantine procedures that may be required as you enter into a different country.
  • Check your travel insurance coverage and how it may be impacted by the coronavirus outbreak. You can find more information about this here.
  • Please be aware that if you plan on visiting an elderly relative or a family member with a pre-existing health condition, they may be at an increased risk of a severe infection if you are infected with COVID-19 even if you show no symptoms.

Do I need a fit to fly certificate because of COVID-19?

A fit to fly certificate will show that you are fit and well, with no symptoms of COVID-19. It will show that you have a low risk of spreading the coronavirus to other people in the country you intend to fly to. The coronavirus pandemic has led many airlines and countries to put restrictions on travel in order to stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

Which countries require a fit to fly certificate?

The response to the coronavirus outbreak differs from country to country. Some countries and aviation authorities now request a fit to fly certificate before travel. For example, for people wishing to travel from the UK back to Thailand, the civil aviation office of Thailand has requested (as of March 18th 2020) that you send a medical certificate and a copy of your passport and plane ticket in advance via email.

Other countries and provinces that request a health certificate when travelling from countries affected by the coronavirus include:

  • Austria
  • Bangladesh
  • Canada
  • Chinese Taipei
  • Cyprus
  • French Polynesia
  • Germany
  • Hungary
  • Indonesia
  • Iran
  • Kosovo
  • Macao (SAR China)
  • Myanmar
  • Nepal
  • Philippines
  • Samoa
  • Vanuatu
  • Viet Nam
  • North Macedonia

Please note, some of these countries require a coronavirus test in addition to a coronavirus medical certificate. Medicspot does not currently offer coronavirus testing, but is able to provide a fitness to fly certificate*. You can find out more information about travel requirements here.

Feeling unwell whilst abroad?

The symptoms of COVID-19 include a cough, fever and high temperature. If you are experiencing these symptoms, you should:

  • Stop your trip if you are about to start and seek medical attention. Try not to continue a long journey
  • Self-isolate and practice social distancing. This means staying indoors and avoiding contact with people.
  • Follow the guidance of the local public health
  • Call a health provider and notify your insurance company so they can advise you on what you should do.
  • Check with a health provider if you are fit to travel when you recover

* You should check your particular circumstances as no refunds will be provided for the consultation if you cannot be provided with the type of medical certificate you require.