Welcome to the UK. No e-gates and a 90 minute wait at UK Border

The British papers are covering extensive delays at Heathrow yesterday – Terminals 2 and 5 (other Terminals are closed) as UK Border Force closed the e-gates (electronic self-scanning gates) in order to check everyone’s passport in person, as well as their negative COVID test and Passenger Locator forms.

The COVID test should have been checked by the airline before the passenger was allowed to board but it seems that the UK Border is doing this again, rather than just a sample of passengers or flight as was suggested by the governments’s Department of Transport would be the case.

The Passenger Locator form is often not checked by the airline in my experience, but if you got to the inspector without it you would have to complete it online, there and then. This requires a device which can access the airport Wi-Fi or which has a data bundle. Not every traveller has this.

The papers report that fines are being handed out to those failing to comply.

The queues led to bags piling up on luggage belts and being dumped on the floor of the terminal.

The Passenger Locator form can be filled in no more than 48 hours before arrival and the web site used to fill it in can be found here.



  1. What’s the procedure for people who fly out of Heathrow after disembarking a cruise ship?
    Will be interesting to see if the requirement for a negative COVID-19 test to get into the U.S. for U.S. citizens is upheld by the courts…and it will most certainly be challenged as unconstitutional

  2. Lenny:
    I think it’s the same – any arrival, unless you are in an exempt category, requires a negative COVID test. Long distance lorry drivers are exempt, for example.

  3. Don’t know if the cruise lines will test on board…going to be a nightmare…probably will end up canceling the cruise.

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