International Airport Guide: COVID Rules & Advice Pages

With different countries, airports, and airlines following different COVID regulations, it can be difficult to travel these days. Especially if you are on a multi-stop trip. However, keeping on top of the latest travel advice and regulations of all the places you are visiting is essential for a stress-free and safe trip.

This guide includes a full list of the latest COVID rules and advice by the most popular international airports and countries to help you plan any international travel this year.

International Airports In The UK

Arriving in the UK at an airport in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, or Wales will require you to follow the correct regulations based on where you have been and what your vaccination status is. This includes:

International Airports in the UK - England

London Heathrow

Heathrow Airport is the busiest airport in the UK by far, with over 80 million passengers per year before COVID.

If you are flying from Heathrow, you will still be required to wear a face covering whilst in all terminals, trains, buses, and stations. Social distancing is also enforced around the airport where possible.

Current guidance for passengers arriving at Heathrow is in line with the UK government regulations, which involve different arrival information depending on whether you are vaccinated or not. However, Heathrow regularly updates their COVID policies on their website, so check before you fly.

London Gatwick

Even though London Gatwick only sees just over half of the amount of pre COVID passengers as London Heathrow, it is still the second spot for the busiest international airport in the UK.

If you are flying from Gatwick Airport, you will be asked to wear a face covering, follow one-way systems, and use hand sanitisers provided. Most of the duty-free shops and restaurants have reopened, however some are subject to restricted opening hours.

Passengers arriving at Gatwick will be required to follow UK government guidelines, which vary depending on where you have visited and your vaccination status. Gatwick’s COVID policy is updated regularly, so check before you travel.


With over 1,500 passengers on average departing each day, Manchester is the fourth busiest airport in the UK and the busiest airport in the North of England.

Flying from Manchester will require you to follow similar rules as Gatwick and Heathrow, including the wearing of face masks in all airport buildings and transport. However, Manchester airport has also introduced temperature screenings as you pass through security checks.

If you are arriving at Manchester Airport, the COVID rules will depend on where you are traveling from and whether you are vaccinated.

Check Manchester airport’s latest COVID policies before you fly to make sure you are compliant.

International Airports in the UK - Scotland


Scotland’s busiest airport is Edinburgh; with over 12 million passengers flying annually through Edinburgh airport.

Unlike airports in England, Edinburgh offers both lateral flow and PCR tests onsite, but these must be booked in advance. The Scottish Government also requires that everyone, both arrivals and departures, wear face coverings in the airport buildings and transport unless you have a valid exemption.

However, the rules on arriving into Scotland follow the rest of the UK and vary on where you are travelling from and whether you are vaccinated. Check the latest requirements on Edinburgh airport’s COVID policy before you fly.

International Airports in the UK - Wales


Cardiff airport is the largest and busiest airport in Wales with 1.63 million flying to or from Cardiff every year.

Passengers are asked to follow the Welsh Government guidance on travel, which includes wearing a three-layer face mask while inside the airport buildings. You may also not be able to use your NHS COVID pass unless you were fully vaccinated in Wales, so check the guidelines before you fly.

If you are arriving in Wales via Cardiff airport, you will need to follow the UK Government guidelines for self-isolating and testing, which depend on where you have been and whether you are vaccinated.

International Airports in the UK - Northern Ireland


Belfast International Airport takes the top spot for the busiest international airport in Northern Ireland with 6.2million passengers annually.

All passengers are required to wear a face mask when in the airport buildings and will be asked to practice social distancing. However, guidelines for arriving in Belfast remain the same as the UK government guidelines depending on your vaccination status and country of travel. If required, you can pre-book a COVID test at the airport before you fly or after you land.

Further updates and details of Belfast airport’s COVID policies are available on their website and should be checked before you fly.

International Airports In Italy

To travel to or from Italy, you will need to obtain a ‘Green Pass’, which is digital or printed proof of vaccination or antigen test result.

However, Italy is currently operating restrictions on which countries it is allowing passengers to travel from or to. Any passengers traveling outside of the EU are only permitted to do so for essential travel, which includes work, health, or study, returning to your residence. This does not include tourism whether you have a green pass or not.

The government is regularly updating the list of countries with these travel restrictions, however, so you should check Rome’s website before making any travel plans.



There are two airports in Rome with around 15million passengers a year. The main airport in Rome is the Leonardo da Vinci International Airport in Fiumicino.

To use Rome’s airports you will need to follow government COVID rules, which include wearing a face mask at all times, having regular temperature checks, and having a ‘Green Pass’ to travel.

Whether you are arriving or departing from Rome, you will need to follow the Italian government’s regulations, including the ban on tourism travel from certain countries.
Check Rome’s website before making any plans to make sure you are permitted to travel to or from Rome.


This is the largest international airport in the Milan metropolitan area of Italy and their COVID regulations COVID regulations are regularly updated.

If you are arriving in Milan, as with any other Italian airport, you will need to complete a passenger locator form with details on your address while in the country, return date, and any onward travel plans.

You will also need to have a ‘Green Pass’ and adhere to any travel restrictions based on the country you are traveling from.

International Airport in Turkey


Istanbul airport still holds the impressive title of being the largest airport in the world.

Currently, their COVID measures mean that all passengers need a negative PCR test result 72 hours prior to their flight. However, restrictions are in place for certain countries, including the UK, preventing travel completely. To check the list of restricted countries, check the airport’s COVID policy.

International Airports In Spain


Serving as the main international airport in Madrid, Adolfo Suárez Madrid–Barajas Airport is the largest in terms of passengers in Spain.

Madrid airport follows the Spanish government regulations on international travel, which will also be true of all airports in Spain. This includes a completed Health Control Form, vaccination passport, and/or a negative PCR or rapid antigen test taken 48 hours before travel.

If you are traveling from an EU country, you can travel with the EU Digital COVID Certificate. However, check Madrid airport COVID policy before you fly.

International Airports In South Africa

Cape Town

As Cape Town airport is the second busiest airport in the whole of South Africa, it shouldn’t be alarming that they have very stringent COVID policies in place.

All passengers must wear a mask and maintain a 1.5m distance from others, however, quarantine is only necessary if you have a positive COVID test on arrival or display symptoms. This will be checked via health screening.

International Airports In India

Indira Gandhi

Indira Gandhi International Airport is the only airport that serves New Delhi and is the biggest and busiest airport in the country.

As of November 2021, passengers traveling through the airport do not need to be quarantined if they can provide a negative PCR test, regardless of vaccination status. However, it is important to regularly check their COVID policies for updates.

Los Angeles (LAX)

Los Angeles airport is fairly modern and known for its outdoor art, as well as being the main international flight hub for LA.

If you are arriving in Los Angeles, whether international or domestic, you need to complete a passenger form. You may also be required to pass a health screening on your arrival.

All passengers will also be required to wear a face mask that covers your mouth and nose while in the airport buildings.

O’Hare, Chicago

Essential for access to the Loop business district, O’Hare airport welcomes millions of passengers each year.

Chicago is operating similar restrictions, requiring all passengers over 2 years old to wear a face mask. If you are arriving at Chicago airport, you ​are not required to quarantine unless you live or work in the City of Chicago or are arriving from one of the restricted destinations. If you are arriving from a domestic or internal flight not on the restricted list, you are also not required to be tested if you are fully vaccinated.

As Chicago’s restricted travel list is changing frequently, check their COVID policy before you fly.

Dallas, Texas

Dallas/Fort Worth airport is the main international airport in Texas and although it has COVID regulations in place, there aren’t as many restrictions when leaving the airport and visiting the local area as in other states.

However, as a passenger, Federal law also requires you to wear a face mask while in the airport buildings. If you are arriving from an international flight into Dallas, you will also need to show proof of a COVID-19 viral test before you travel whether you are vaccinated or not.

International Airports In France

Charles De Gaulle

As the largest airport in France, Charles De Gaulle in Paris has 80 million passengers a year making it the busiest airport in the EU.


To travel in or out of Charles De Gaulle, you will need a Covid Certificate, which you will be asked to show several times before you board your flight. However, other regulations on flying into or out of France will depend on your vaccination status and your destination. If you are traveling to or from a green country, including within the EU, you can travel freely with your COVID passport. However, if you are traveling to or from an orange or red country, including Brazil, Turkey, and Russia, you will need a reason for travel unless you are fully vaccinated.


A full list of the COVID regulations and the classification of countries in France can be found on the Charles De Gaulle website.


Although one of the smaller airports in France, Strasbourg is still very popular due to its links to the surrounding areas. It sits on the border with Germany and welcomes just over 1 million passengers a year.

The regulations for flying in or out of Strasbourg are similar to those in the rest of France, including COVID passports and mask-wearing. However, Strasbourg airport is also operating on reduced opening hours.

The opening times, as well as the full list of COVID regulations at Strasbourg, can be found online on their website.

International Airports In The Netherlands


As the main airport for Amsterdam, Schiphol airport is the largest in the Netherlands, welcoming over 20 million passengers every year. Schiphol requires all passengers over the age of 13 to fill out a health declaration before arriving at the airport. This will include a mandatory COVID passport, which shows proof of vaccination and/or a negative PCR test.

However, the guidance on quarantining when arriving at Schiphol is dependant on the country you are travelling from, so check the government regulations online for the most up-to-date information before you fly.

International Airports In Germany


Whilst not the largest airport in Germany, Cologne airport still welcomes over 12 million passengers every year. If you are arriving in Cologne you will need proof of a negative COVID test taken within 72 hours of your flight and you will also need to quarantine for 14 days unless you have proof of vaccination. Germany also requires mask in all airport buildings.

Cologne airport’s full COVID policy is available to view in English and German online for additional and up-to-date information.

Making Travel Plans

When you are planning any international travel, it is not only useful to look into the COVID regulations for each airport that you fly into but the regulations for the destination country that you will arrive in. Details about flying out of and into the UK can be found on the UK Government website and should be checked regularly for updates.

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