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United Airlines to require negative COVID-19 tests for all passengers originating in the UK

Dec. 24, 2020
3 min read
United Airlines to require negative COVID-19 tests for all passengers originating in the UK
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United Airlines shared the details in a press release on Thursday of its plan to impose a testing requirement for all passengers whose travel originates in the U.K.

Beginning Dec. 28, all United passengers traveling to the United States from the United Kingdom must present proof of a COVID-19 test with a negative result within 72 hours of departure. According to the airline, molecular tests including PCR, LAMP or antigen are acceptable. And, if you can't arrange a test a few days before departure -- or aren't confident in the turnaround time -- rapid testing is provided at the Collinson testing center in Terminal 2 at London Heathrow Airport (LHR).

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The testing requirement applies to all passengers over the age of five, though those who are connecting from elsewhere in Europe onto a United flight at Heathrow are exempt.

All of United's flights between the U.S. and London are included in this new policy. For December, that means its four daily flights to the airline's hubs in Newark (EWR), Chicago-O'Hare (ORD), Washington-Dulles (IAD) and San Francisco (SFO). And in January, it will apply to its twice-daily flights between London and both Newark and Chicago.

The announcement was also made by Governor Phil Murphy of the state of New Jersey in a tweet on Thursday.

This development comes as the U.K. finds itself reeling from the discovery of a new strain of the coronavirus, which is reportedly much more transmissible than other varieties. As a result, the nation has seen itself completely cut off from dozens of countries around the world. The U.S. has not banned travel to and from the U.K. at this point, but British Airways, Delta Air Lines and Virgin Atlantic have all imposed similar requirements in cooperation with the state of New York for their flights from London to New York City, via Kennedy Airport (JFK).

Featured image by (Photo by Ryan Patterson for The Points Guy)

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Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
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3XEarn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
3XEarn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels
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  • Intro Offer
    For a limited time, earn 80,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening

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  • Annual Fee

    $95
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
    Excellent, Good

Why We Chose It

The Citi Premier’s 3 points per dollar spent across a wide range of popular categories is one of the more lucrative offerings in the world of points and miles. The Citi Premier comes with a $95 annual fee and is currently offering a solid sign up bonus of 80,000 points after you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first three months. It also has some valuable transfer partners to make the most of your rewards. Add in access to Citi Entertainment plus a $100 hotel credit for any single-stay hotel booking that exceeds $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, booked through the Citi travel website, there are few reasons why the Citi Premier should not be in every traveler’s wallet.

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  • Earns 3x points on restaurants, supermarkets, gas stations, air travel and hotels.
  • $100 annual hotel savings benefit (on single hotel stay bookings of $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, booked through thankyou.com)
  • Points transfer to 16 airline programs, from JetBlue to Virgin Atlantic.
  • World Elite Mastercard benefits, extended warranty, damage and theft protection.

Cons

  • $95 annual fee
  • Lacks travel protections that other travel rewards cards come with
  • For a limited time, earn 80,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels
  • Earn 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Annual Hotel Savings Benefit
  • 80,000 Points are redeemable for $800 in gift cards when redeemed at thankyou.com
  • No expiration and no limit to the amount of points you can earn with this card
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases