Test to Release Quarantine PCR Test
After five days in quarantine, you can take a private ‘test to release’ PCR Test which, if negative, will release you from self-isolation (quarantine) before the full 10 days has passed.
Do you also require...
- Test to release can only be used in England. Other countries in the UK cannot use the scheme.
- The kits are sent to a government-approved laboratory for testing and we aim to send results within 12-24 hours of receiving your sample.
- You must fill in the passenger locator form within 48 hours of your departure to the UK. You will need your test reference number which we will email to you after you checkout.
- Arrivals who have been in or transited through South Africa in the 10 days prior to arrival cannot opt in to test to release.
- If you test positive you must remain in isolation for an additional 10 days from when you took the test. If you would like further information on what you should do if you receive a positive result, you should visit https://111.nhs.uk/covid-19 or contact the NHS on 111.
Vivo Clinic Manchester Limited (trading as VIVO Clinic) DHSC approved as a private COVID-19 test provider for the Test to Release Scheme for International Travel.
Option 1 (FREE) – Randox drop boxes are situated all across the United Kingdom. You can drop your sample off at your nearest drop box. Please visit click here to locate your nearest drop box.
Option 2 (FREE) – We have recently partnered up with “DX courier.” If your nearest Randox drop box is too far away you can drop your sample at your nearest DX drop site. You must attach the DX label to the white envelope provided in your kit before dropping it off at a DX site. Please make a note of your tracking number as without this you will not be able to track your sample in the event of a delay. You will find this located under the bar code and printed twice at the bottom of the label. Please ensure you fill out your sender name, phone number and address. To locate your nearest DX drop site please click here. Please note: Not all DX Drop boxes are open 7 days a week, so please check the link to see if this is a suitable method for your requirements.
Please be advised, we do not recommend using Royal Mail to send your samples back to the lab. Royal Mail are currently experiencing overwhelming demand and we will not be held accountable for delays as a result of this. If we can be of any assistance during this stage please do not hesitate to contact us on 0333 3058486. We are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for your peace of mind.
What is Test to Release?
Returning to England from red and amber list countries will require you to self-isolate for a minimum of 10 days. Breaking quarantine can endanger the safety of others and lead to fines of up to £10,000.
However, if you are returning to England from a country on the amber list, you can take a PCR test after 5 days of quarantine by opting into the government’s Test to Release scheme. If the result is negative, you may end your self-isolation.
And if you have had both your COVID-19 jabs from the NHS, then you will not have to enter quarantine at all when comin back to the UK from an amber list country.
How does it work?
You buy one or more test kits from this page.
You must opt-in to test to release on your passenger locator form here within 48 hours of your return flight.
When the kit arrives, you take a nose and throat swab sample and return it to our lab using one of the methods detailed under the ‘Important Information’ tab above.
The government scheme allows you to leave your house to post back the sample without it being classed as violating lockdown.
Once the lab has processed your sample your results will be emailed to you. If the results are negative, then you may end your quarantine.
How long do results take to process?
Results are processed Monday-Saturday and we aim to send you your results within 12-24 hours of receiving your sample. This means you can potentially end self-isolation a week early. Please be advised there can be delays with receiving your result if your sample has to be rerun.
Can I leave the house to return my swab sample?
“You may leave your house to post your test or to travel directly to and from the testing site. You should follow safer travel guidance and avoid public transport if possible.” – From the Government website
Which countries require quarantine when arriving in the England?
Most countries require a 10-day self-isolation period. A list of countries that may be except or have alternative requirements can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-travel-corridors
You may also find our own Covid-19 travel portal helpful.
How soon can I leave self-isolation?
This infographic from Gov.uk demonstrates some sample scenarios:
Is the test approved
Yes, we are on the government list of test providers and our laboratories are UKAS approved.