Activate your COVID-19 Travel Test Kit/s

Before taking any COVID-19 test for travel, you need to activate your test kit. You must activate your test on the same day you take your test. If anyone travelling with you is under 16, their guardian will need to complete their activation for them. You can do this quickly and easily through your patient account.

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Activate a COVID-19 Test for Travel
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Activate your test kit: Leaving the UK

Getting ready to activate your test

To activate your test kit, you will need your:

  • Passport
  • Test kit and 'P number' (this number can be found on the barcoded stickers included in your kit)
  • Travel details
  • ZAVA patient account login details. If you’re over 16 and do not already have a ZAVA patient account, you will need to create one first. If you are under 16, you will get your results through your guardian’s account.

When to activate your test

In most cases, you will need to activate and take your test at least 48 hours before leaving the UK. But you must check the requirements of the country you are travelling to in order to find out when you need to take your test. This is because different countries have different requirements to enter. Most countries will need you to provide a Fit to Fly certificate, showing proof of a negative result taken within 48 to 96 hours of arrival.

How to activate your test

In your online ZAVA patient account, select 'Activate test kit’ from the menu bar. Here, you'll need to complete a short questionnaire that will take no longer than 2 minutes. After you've done this, you'll be ready to take your test. You should activate and take your test at the same time and this should be in line with government guidelines of the location you are travelling to. You should check the current travel restrictions of your destination to make sure you're taking your test at the correct time.

Returning your completed test

After you've done your test, drop it off at your nearest drop-off location.

You should get your results within 36 hours* of dropping off your test. If you test negative for COVID-19, you'll receive your Fit to Fly certificate in your patient account with information on what to do next.

*This only applies if completed tests are dropped off before 4pm Mon-Sat (excluding bank holidays. Bank holiday drop-off is available at our London and Taunton locations). If samples are dropped off after 4pm, results will take an additional 24 hours. We have a reduced drop off service available on Sundays. Please check the opening hours of our drop-off locations.

Activate your test kit: Entering England

Getting ready to activate your test

To activate your test, you will need to provide your:

  • Date of arrival in England
  • Vaccination status
  • Flight number
  • Booking reference number

When to activate your test

When you activate and take your test will vary, depending on where you have travelled.

If you entered England from a green list country:

  • Activate and take your Day 2 test within 2 days after you enter England. You do not need to quarantine on your return unless your Day 2 test result is positive.

If you entered England from an amber list country and are fully vaccinated (your second dose must be more than 14 days before travel):

  • Activate and take your Day 2 test within the first 2 days of quarantine. You do not need to quarantine on your return unless your Day 2 test result is positive.

If you entered England from an amber list country and are not fully vaccinated:

  • You need to quarantine on return for 10 days (unless you take a Test to Release and get a negative result).
  • Activate and take your Day 2 test within the first 2 days of quarantine.
  • Activate and take your Day 8 test between day 8 and 10 of quarantine..

If you entered England from a red list country:

Your tests will be provided as part of your hotel quarantine package. We do not provide testing for arrivals from red list countries.

Test to Release (Day 5 test):

  • Activate and take your test on day 5 of quarantine.

IMPORTANT: The day you arrive in England is day 0 of your quarantine. Day 1 of your quarantine is the day after you land and your first full 24 hours in the country.

How to activate your test

Once you're ready, click 'Activate test kit'. Here, you'll need to complete a short questionnaire that will take no longer than 2 minutes. After you've done this, you'll be ready to take your test.

Returning a completed test

After taking your test you can return it via a Royal Mail priority post box using the supplied pre-paid envelope. Don’t forget to write down your tracking reference number and post your test before the last priority collection to make sure there are no delays.

Or, you can take your completed test to one of our designated drop-off locations (Test to Release only).

Please do not use our drop-off locations if you have any symptoms of coronavirus or have been in contact with anyone who has recently been exposed to the virus.

Why do I need to activate my test?

You need to activate your test so that we can send your results and certificate (if required) to your patient account.

Activating your test kit will link it to your patient account so that when we get your results, we know who they belong to. If you do not activate your test, we will not be able to send your results to you.

I cannot activate my test

If you cannot activate your test or need a bit more guidance, you can contact our Customer Support team on 020 3588 0292 or send us a message via your account. Our lines are open 8am to 7pm Monday to Thursday, 9am to 5pm Saturday and 10am to 4pm Sunday.

When will I receive my results?

Leaving the UK:

You should get your results in your ZAVA patient account within 36 hours* of dropping off your test. If you do not get your results within this time, please contact our Customer Support team.

If you test negative for COVID-19, you can download your certificate straight away from your patient account.

*This only applies if completed tests are dropped off before 4pm Monday to Saturday. If samples are dropped off after 4pm, results will take an additional 24 hours. We do not accept drop-offs after 4pm on Saturdays and bank holidays.

Entering England:

You should get your results in your patient account within 48 hours of receipt by Royal Mail. We will email you to confirm this. Don’t forget to write down your tracking reference number and post your test before the last priority collection to avoid delays.

What happens after I receive my results?

Leaving the UK:

If you test negative for COVID-19, we’ll send a message to your patient account with your Fit to Fly certificate and instructions on what to do next. You will need to present this certificate at the airport in order to travel, so make sure you have it with you.

If you test positive for COVID-19, you will not get a Fit to Fly certificate and will need to self isolate immediately. To comply with government regulations, we send all COVID-19 PCR test results to the appropriate public health sector.

Returning to England:

Travelling from a green list country:

You do not need to quarantine on return but need to take Day 2 Test:

  • If you test negative for COVID-19, you are free to carry on as normal and do not need to take another test.
  • If you test positive for COVID-19, you will need to start your 10 day quarantine period from the day after you took your test.

Fully vaccinated* travelling from an amber list country:

You do not need to quarantine on return but need to take a Day 2 Test:

  • If you test negative for COVID-19, you are free to carry on as normal and do not need to take another test.
  • If you test positive for COVID-19, you will need to start your 10 day quarantine period from the day after you took your test.

Unvaccinated* travelling from an amber list country

  • If you test negative for COVID-19 on your Day 2 test, you must continue to quarantine until it’s time to take your next test.
  • If you test positive for COVID-19 on your Day 2 test, you will need to restart your 10 day quarantine period from the day after you took your test. You do not need to take your Day 8 test.
  • If you test positive after a Day 8 test, you will need to restart your quarantine for a further 10 days from the day after you took your test.

If you test positive during your quarantine, you must continue to self isolate, even if you feel well.

If you do have symptoms of the virus, you must self isolate for 10 days from the day your symptoms started (even if this is earlier than when you took your test).

Anyone you live with or have travelled with must also self isolate for 10 days from the day you took your test.

*You are only fully vaccinated if you have received your second dose of an NHS administered vaccine at least 14 days before you travel.

How do I take my test?

Taking a PCR swab test is simple, and you can do this by following the instructions that come with your test kit.

  • Follow the instructions included with your test kit and use the swab to take a sample of cells from the back of your throat and nose.
  • Drop your test off at a designated drop-off location or for Day 2, Day 8 and Test to Release only, return by post.
  • You should get results and instructions on what to do next from our doctors in your account within 36 hours of dropping off your sample, or within 48 hours from receipt by Royal Mail if you return your sample by post.
  • Before taking your test, you should make sure it’s appropriate for you to do so without additional support. The below guidelines outline how you should take your test depending on your age.

Adults aged 18 and over: Adults can take the test on their own or with help if more support is needed.

Adolescents aged 12 to 17: Adolescents can take the test on their own, but should do so with adult supervision. An adult may conduct the test if necessary.

Children under 12: An adult should test children under 12 years of age. Children under 5 cannot use this test.

The UK government has provided these details on COVID-19 self-testing.

In partnership with SYNLAB

Synlab logo

ZAVA has partnered with one of Europe’s leading medical diagnostics providers SYNLAB to offer COVID-19 testing. SYNLAB is a UKAS accredited private provider listed on GOV.UK for COVID-19 testing.




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