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Which PCR tests do airlines accept in Cyprus?

As a number of members from our community and Brits have started to return from their summer holidays in Cyprus, social media posts and questions have been asked if PCR test done in the north of the island are accepted or not.

Reports have been made by some travellers who have faced some issues reading the PCR test at the airports because their PCR tests have been taking in the North of Cyprus for their return to the UK.

Causing confusion over if they are accepted or not many social media uses have complained they have been unable to get answers regarding this from their airlines.

While some airline companies like Cyprus Airways have made it clear they do accept PCR tests carried out in North Cyprus, some have not. We contact a number of airlines currently offering flights to and from the UK and Cyprus regarding their PCR testing requirement, asking if they accept PCR tests taken in North Cyprus or not.

In a statement to Londra Gazete, a spokesperson for British Airways said “We follow the guidelines set out by the UK Government and relevant authorities. Any test taken needs to meet the requirements set out by them at the following page of the UK Government website: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-testing-for-people-travelling-to-england

A spokesperson for Jet2 said to Londra Gazete that: “Providing the tests taken for pre-travel meet the UK government standards of testing and validity period, they would be acceptable for entry to the UK.”

Wizz Air and easyJet have also been contacted for comment.

WHAT IS THE GUIDELINES FOR PCR TEST?

According to the UK government guidelines, it states “The test must meet performance standards of ≥97% specificity, ≥80% sensitivity at viral loads above 100,000 copies/ml.

“This could include tests such as a PCR test, a LAMP test, an antigen test, such as an LFD (lateral flow device) test

“You must check with your test provider that the test meets the standards. You may not be able to travel if it does not.”

They also added that the test results must be in English, French or Spanish they do not accept documents that have been translated. Saying “You must provide the original test result notification. It must include the following information: your name, which should match the name on your travel documents- your date of birth or age – the result of the test – the date the test sample was collected or received by the test provider – the name of the test provider and their contact details and confirmation of the device used for the test, or that the test was a PCR test.

If the test result does not include this information you may not be able to board, and may not be able to travel to England. If you arrive without a test result that includes this information, you might have to pay a £500 fine.

Travel will also need to make sure they fill out the passenger locator form within 48 hours of the flight, where the PCR test details need to be uploaded as well as details of their booked PCR test for their return in the UK. Those who are fully vaccinated will only need to book the day 2 test if negative they do not have to isolate. Anyone who hasn’t had both vaccines will need to isolate for 10 days and carry out two tests on day 2 and day 8.

The UK government’s next travel updates are expected to be made on August 25th. In the same week, there is also an update expect to be made by the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, currently, UK travellers that are fully vaccinated are exempt for quarantine until August 31.

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