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How flexible is the 72 hour Covid test-for-travel window

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How flexible is the 72 hour Covid test-for-travel window

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Hi.

How strict is the 72 hour window for getting a negative PCR test to travel to the Canaries? From what I've read, you have to show your result/certificate when you “book in at your accommodation”. We will probably be arriving at our hotel at around 4.0pm on Sunday 20th December. So does that mean we need to have the PCR tests taken anytime after 4.0pm on Thursday 17th, or is it not that strict?

What if the clinic's last appointment is 3.0pm on the 17th, and we don't arrive at the hotel until 5.0pm on the 20th (74hours)? Apparently, you get results back by midnight the following day.

I think it will be too nerve racking to have the test Friday am, and wait to get the results by midnight on the Saturday, before the following morning's flight.

Thanks


Replies

  • ThrugelmirThrugelmir Forumite
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    The test needs to be undertaken within 72 hours of travel.  Time of arrival at the final destination has no bearing. 
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  • ming60ming60 Forumite
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    So it needs to be within the 72 hours up until takeoff in the UK, yes?

  • eskbankereskbanker Forumite
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    The test needs to be undertaken within 72 hours of travel.  Time of arrival at the final destination has no bearing. 
    ming60 said:
    So it needs to be within the 72 hours up until takeoff in the UK, yes?
    According to the info published by both the UK and Spanish governments, the PCR test needs to be within 72 hours of arrival:

    https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/spain/entry-requirements
    If you are travelling by air or sea to Spain, you must declare on the mandatory ‘Health Control Form’ listed below, that you have undertaken a PCR (swab) test within 72 hours of arrival

    [...]

    if you’re travelling to the Canary Islands and are booked into regulated tourist accommodation, you will be obliged to:

    • produce an official, negative COVID-19 test taken no more than 72 hours earlier, when checking in to your accommodation

    https://www.spth.gob.es/info-pcr

    From 23rd November 2020 all passengers who come from a high-risk country in relation to the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, in order to enter Spain, MUST show a certificate with a NEGATIVE PCR result (RT-PCR of COVID-19), carried out in the 72h prior to your arrival.

  • DW190DW190 Forumite
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    The document you have to provide does not require a time to be on it.  Insist that the clinic only date the doc.  72 hours is commonly known as 3 days.  Thurs to Sun 
    • name of passenger
    • passport number or ID card number (the number provided must match the one provided on the Health Control Form)
    • test date
    • name and contact details of the testing centre
    • testing method applied (i.e. PCR)
    • test results
  • spirospiro Forumite
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    DW190 said:
    The document you have to provide does not require a time to be on it.  Insist that the clinic only date the doc.  72 hours is commonly known as 3 days.  Thurs to Sun 
    • name of passenger
    • passport number or ID card number (the number provided must match the one provided on the Health Control Form)
    • test date
    • name and contact details of the testing centre
    • testing method applied (i.e. PCR)
    • test results
    Every document I have read always states 72hrs not 3 days. As the certificate has to be acceptable to a foreign authority I expect the private tester will put exactly what is required on the certificate, not what you want.
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  • silvercarsilvercar Forumite, Board Guide
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    spiro said:
    DW190 said:
    The document you have to provide does not require a time to be on it.  Insist that the clinic only date the doc.  72 hours is commonly known as 3 days.  Thurs to Sun 
    • name of passenger
    • passport number or ID card number (the number provided must match the one provided on the Health Control Form)
    • test date
    • name and contact details of the testing centre
    • testing method applied (i.e. PCR)
    • test results
    Every document I have read always states 72hrs not 3 days. As the certificate has to be acceptable to a foreign authority I expect the private tester will put exactly what is required on the certificate, not what you want.
    I disagree with that on 2 counts. Firstly, I emailed the government tourist department in Seychelles, which currently requires tests within 48 hours of departure, and asked if the time needed to be shown on the certificate and they confirmed that the time wasn't required only a date. So worth asking officials the requirements.
    I then spoke to 2 testing centres and both were happy to leave off the time from the certificate on request. This meant that for an evening flight, I had the option to have the test earlier in the day, in order to have more time for the results to come back. (all turned out be moot as England entered lockdown 2 and leisure travel was banned).
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  • DW190DW190 Forumite
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    spiro said:
    DW190 said:
    The document you have to provide does not require a time to be on it.  Insist that the clinic only date the doc.  72 hours is commonly known as 3 days.  Thurs to Sun 
    • name of passenger
    • passport number or ID card number (the number provided must match the one provided on the Health Control Form)
    • test date
    • name and contact details of the testing centre
    • testing method applied (i.e. PCR)
    • test results
    Every document I have read always states 72hrs not 3 days. As the certificate has to be acceptable to a foreign authority I expect the private tester will put exactly what is required on the certificate, not what you want.
    What was printed was exactly what the authority required.  Here is a little more:

    If you are travelling by air or sea to Spain, you must declare on the mandatory ‘Health Control Form’ listed below, that you have undertaken a PCR (swab) test within 72 hours of arrival, have tested negative for COVID-19, and can show on request evidence certifying your results. The document you provide must be the original, be written in Spanish or English, may be submitted in paper or electronic format and must contain the following information:

    • name of passenger
    • passport number or ID card number (the number provided must match the one provided on the Health Control Form)
    • test date
    • name and contact details of the testing centre
    • testing method applied (i.e. PCR)
    • test results

    As you can see, no requirement to for the doc to be timed.
  • ming60ming60 Forumite
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    Thanks for all your comments. A little confusing, I must admit!
    Just to add one thing. I have just been emailing the private clinic where we're planning to have the PCR test done, and they said the time is written in as standard on the certificate.
  • silvercarsilvercar Forumite, Board Guide
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    ming60 said:
    Thanks for all your comments. A little confusing, I must admit!
    Just to add one thing. I have just been emailing the private clinic where we're planning to have the PCR test done, and they said the time is written in as standard on the certificate.
    That’s fine if it suits you. If it doesn’t suit you then if they can’t oblige you will need to find another clinic. It’s a buyers market, to a certain extent. 
    I'm a Board Guide on the Debate House Prices & the Economy, House Buying, Renting & Selling, Mortgages and Endowments, In My Home incl DIY, Overseas Holidays & Student boards.
    I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly.
    Board guides are not moderators and don't read every post. If you spot an abusive or illegal post then please report it to [email protected]. Any views are mine and not the official line of moneysavingexpert.com.
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