How do I get a Covid pass in England? New rules explained as vaccine passports made mandatory at some venues

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Covid passports are now required at certain venues and events in England - but how do you get one?

Adults in England will now need to show a Covid pass to attend certain events in England, after MPs voted in favour of the government’s Covid Plan B for winter.

People in England will now have to show proof of vaccination, or a negative lateral flow test to enter big sports matches, nightclubs or other large events.

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Covid passes are already in use in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, however the rules for each country are slightly different. So how do you get a Covid pass, and where do you need to use it?

How do I apply for a Covid pass in England?

People living in England can download their NHS Covid pass via the NHS App or via the online NHS Covid Pass service.

You can also get your Covid pass as a letter if you feel more comfortable with this option, or you are not digitally-enabled.

You can visit ‘Getting a digital NHS COVID Pass’ and start your application now.

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Who can get a digital NHS Covid pass?

You can get the NHS Covid pass for travel if you are aged 16 and over if you’ve had two vaccine doses, or if you have had a positive PCR test in the past six months and have finished isolating (this pass lasts 180 days).

If you’re 18 or over, you can also use your digital Covid pass for domestic events and venues. People under 18 do not have to show proof of their vaccination or test results for domestic events or venues in England.

Over 18-year-olds must meet the following conditions to get a Covid pass:

- It’s been two weeks since your second vaccination

- You have had a negative PCR or lateral flow test result in the past 48 hours and reported it on the NHS website (this pass lasts for 48 hours after the result).

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You must have been vaccinated in England, Wales or the Isle of Man, and if you were vaccinated in Scotland, you need to both be registered with a GP in England and live in England.

How long is a Covid pass valid for?

If you have had a vaccine used in the UK, your NHS Covid pass lasts for 30 days, but the 30-day period refreshes every time you log in

For those using a negative PCR test or rapid lateral flow test, your NHS Covid pass is valid for 48 hours after a negative result.

If you download your digital NHS Covid pass as a PDF, always check the expiry date before using it.

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If you’re fully vaccinated the barcode on a PDF is valid for 30 days.

The NHS App may ask you to confirm your phone number when you log in.

If you do not confirm it, your NHS Covid pass will be valid for 72 hours.

Over-18s must show that they are either double-jabbed or had a recent negative test, which they can do with an NHS Covid pass or text message or email from NHS Test and Trace.

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What are the new Covid pass rules in England?

Over-18s must show that they are either double-jabbed or had a recent negative test, which they can do with an NHS Covid pass or text message or email from NHS Test and Trace.

The rules apply when visiting:

  • Nightclubs
  • Any venue with more than 10,000 people
  • Unseated outdoor venues with more than 4,000 people
  • Indoor unseated venues with more than 500 people

Under the restrictions, any venue caught failing to check passes could be fined up to £10,000. The faking of a pass could also attract the same penalty.

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