Travelers who have received a booster dose of a Covid vaccine in England are now able to prove their vaccination status using the Covid Pass NHS.
It allows you to travel without quarantine to countries such as Israel, Croatia and Austria, which have a time limit for the validity of the vaccination status.
Third doses are not added to the national pass as they are not currently required to qualify as fully vaccinated.
Last week the boosters were extended to all over 40s in the UK.
Booster doses were initially offered to over 50s, front-line health and social care personnel, and people with health conditions that put them at greater risk of contracting the virus.
More than 13 million booster shots have been administered so far in the UK.
- Who needs a Covid passport and how do I get it?
- How can people over 40 get a Covid recall?
- What tests and jabs do I need to travel abroad?
People can already demonstrate whether they have had a first or second dose, a recent negative test, or have recently recovered from the virus using the App of the National Health Service.
The NHS Covid Pass is used for travel as well as entry to some national locations that require it. You will not need to show proof of a recall to travel to England.
In England, it is currently not mandatory to show proof of vaccination anywhere. However, it is mandatory for nightclubs and major events in Scotland and cinemas, theaters, nightclubs and major events in Wales.
The Northern Ireland executive also voted to introduce mandatory Covid passports in places like nightclubs and cinemas.
Jab boosters are now automatically displayed for digital Covid Pass users in England, starting Friday noon, but the information is not immediately available via the Covid Pass matching service.
The government said this will be updated in due course.
The boosters will appear on Covid Pass in Wales from 29 November. However, proof of a third dose is not required to enter places in Wales that require a Covid Pass.
Tim Alderslade, Chief Executive Officer of Airlines UK welcomed the move, saying ensuring that travel is “as easy as possible is vital”.
“However, we still have a long way to go to return to pre-pandemic demand levels,” he added.
Paul Charles, chief executive of travel consultancy The PC Agency, said the development was “a major step forward,” increasing people’s confidence in booking travel over the Christmas period.
However, he said the government needs to update the app “urgently” so teens can also prove their vaccination status.
Health Secretary Sajid Javid said: “We want to make it as easy as possible for people to show their vaccination status if they travel abroad.
“This update to the NHS Covid Pass will allow people to have their complete medical record at hand whether they are going on vacation or seeing loved ones overseas.”
Vaccine Minister Maggie Throup urged people to get their booster as soon as they were eligible, saying it was “the best way to protect yourself before winter.”
Results from a UK trial of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine found that a booster increased protection against symptomatic disease by up to nearly 95% in people aged 50 and over.
In addition to boosters, some people with severely suppressed immune systems are given a third primary vaccine as part of their primary vaccination and may even be offered a booster at a later time.
- Coronavirus vaccines
- Vaccine passports
- Coronavirus pandemic
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