Advice and information for recreational boaters arriving and departing the UK


Guidance for boaters (updated 24 September 2021)  

Arriving in the UK

If you have been in a country or territory on the red list in the last 10 days you will only be allowed to enter the UK if you are a British or Irish National, or you have residence rights in the UK and you must follow the rules for red list countries and territories.

Arriving in England

From 19 July guidance recommending against travel to amber countries is removed, however, health measures at the border will vary depending on where you have been in the 10 days before you arrive and whether you are travelling from a green, amber or red country. The Government has provided guidance on the countries rated as red, amber or green for Coronavirus (COVID-19) and the rules you must follow to enter England. 

From 4am Monday 19 July you do not need to quarantine on arrival in England from an amber country or take a day 8 Covid-19 test, as long as you have been fully vaccinated under the UK vaccination programme.

From 4am 2 August 2021, passengers who are fully vaccinated in Europe (EU Member States, European Free Trade Association countries and the European microstate countries of Andorra, Monaco and Vatican City) with vaccines authorised by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) or in the USA with vaccines authorised by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), or in the Swiss vaccination programme, are also able to travel to England without having to quarantine or take a day 8 test on arrival.

Amber arrivals who have been fully vaccinated in the UK, USA and European countries are still required to complete a pre-departure test before arrival into England, alongside a PCR test on or before day 2 after arrival. Those vaccinated in the US also need to provide proof of US residency. Passengers from all countries cannot travel to the UK unless they have completed a passenger locator form.

Fully vaccinated means that you have had your final dose of an approved vaccine at least 14 days before the date you arrive in England.  You will need to declare that you have been fully vaccinated on your passenger locator form.

From 4am on Sunday 8 August France moved from amber plus to amber list.

Further guidance for recreational boaters arriving in England is contained in Sailing pleasure craft to English ports/marinas/harbours (the requirements outlined in this document are in addition to the arrival requirements outlined in Notice 8).  Please note that while Sailing pleasure craft to English ports/marinas/harbours is not published government guidance specific to the sector, it is a collation of commonly asked questions aimed at helping clarify the requirements insofar as they apply to pleasure craft. You should always refer to in the first instance for the full guidance on border health rules.

Arriving in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland

People who live in ScotlandWales and Northern Ireland should follow the travel and transport guidance provided by their administrations:

International travel

The UK government publishes advice about travelling aboard, including the latest information on coronavirus, safety and security, entry requirements and travel warnings. The country specific advice covers 226 countries and territories. Where available, the advice provides links to current Covid-19 entry restrictions and requirements that you may be expected to follow irrespective of the means of transport unless otherwise stated. The restrictions and requirements may change with little warning and you should monitor the advice provided for the latest updates.

The European Union has set up a website and a mobile app where you can see if travel is possible to each member state, the requirements of each destination, and other information to answer travellers’ questions. Go to Re-open EU for travel information and guidelines for each destination.

Noonsite provides a considerable amount of information that may help recreational boaters abroad and its Covid-19 document has guidance as well as links to the latest developments.

To get in touch

Should RYA members have any enquiries related to the guidance on this page please contact the RYA Cruising Team at (please include your membership number in your email) or +44 (0) 23 8060 4233 (please have your membership number to hand).

For other enquiries, call the RYA on +44 (0) 23 8060 4100.