Will Covid booster show on NHS app? When third vaccine will be visible - and do you need it travel?

Some countries have started to set expiry dates on the validity of Covid vaccinations unless travellers have had a third dose to boost immunity

UK holidaymakers who have had a booster or third dose can now demonstrate their vaccination station on the NHS app.

The NHS Covid Pass previously only recorded first and second vaccinations, and did not register third ‘top-up’ doses.

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Travel chiefs warned that the omission could have left travellers being denied access to countries which require proof of a booster vaccine, unless the app was updated.

The issue has now been addressed to ensure all booster vaccination records are visible for outbound international travel through both the NHS App and on NHS.UK

The addition will enable those who have had a booster or third dose to travel to countries including Israel, Croatia and Austria who have already introduced a time limit for the Covid-19 vaccine to be valid for quarantine-free travel.

Boosters and third doses will not be added to the domestic Covid Pass as it is not currently a requirement for people to have booster doses to qualify as fully vaccinated.

It is also not necessary to show evidence of a booster for travel into England at the moment.

As of Friday 19 November, evidence of a booster or third dose now shows up automatically in the NHS app in England, but it is not immediately available via the Covid Pass letter service. This is expected to be updated soon.

The booster vaccine will appear on the Covid Pass in Wales from 29 November.

However evidence of a booster vaccine is not needed to enter venues in Wales which require a Covid Pass for entry. Evidence of two vaccinations or a negative lateral flow test in the last 48 hours remain the requirement.

Health Secretary Sajid Javid said: “We want to make it as easy as possible for people to show their vaccine status if they are travelling abroad.

“This update to the NHS Covid Pass will mean people can have their complete medical picture at their fingertips if they are going on holiday or seeing loved ones overseas.

“Getting a top-up jab is our best defence against this virus and I urge all those who are eligible to come forward and get boosted.”

Do I need a Covid booster to travel?

Some countries have now started to introduce ‘expiry dates’ on vaccination for travel, which is based on when people received their first and second doses.

Austria, Croatia, Switzerland and Israel have all set expiry dates for the validity of vaccines, meaning vaccinations will effectively expire unless travellers have boosted their immunity with a third dose.

Currently, Austria recognises travellers as fully vaccinated providing no more than 12 months have passed since the last vaccine dose was given. But from 6 December, two-dose vaccinations will only be valid for nine months after the second dose.

In Switzerland, authorities only consider a person to be fully vaccinated “for a period of 12 months from the date of complete vaccination”, while Croatia has put a 270-day limit on the validity of vaccines.

Israel has the strictest rules with travellers only permitted entry if their visit is due to end no more than 180 days after their second dose.

Lithuania has now included proof of booster jabs in its app for citizens, while France is introducing strict rules on boosters from next month.

As of 15 December, people aged 65 and over in France will only be allowed to travel and visit restaurants and museums if they have a booster dose.

In a TV address, President Emmanuel Macron said: “From 15 December, you will need to provide proof of a booster jab to extend the validity of your health pass.”

It is expected that more countries could follow suit and introduce similar policies, meaning proof of a third jab could become essential for travelling.

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