COVID-19 testing for United travelers

Houston Intercontinental to Latin America & the Caribbean
San Francisco to Hawaii
New York/Newark to London Heathrow

As people around the world resume traveling, we’re piloting programs on select routes to help make COVID-19 testing more accessible and learn more about the benefits of pre-departure testing.

Houston Intercontinental to Latin America and the Caribbean

Beginning with flights on December 7, travelers originating from Houston Intercontinental (IAH) to select destinations in Central and South America and the Caribbean can arrange a self-collected, mail-in COVID-19 test through United and ADL Health. This test is an RT-PCR test that satisfies the entry requirements* for the following destinations:

  • Aruba (AUA)
  • Belize City, Belize (BZE)
  • Guatemala City, Guatemala (GUA)
  • Lima, Peru (LIM)
  • Nassau, Bahamas (NAS)
  • Panama City, Panama (PTY)
  • Roatan, Honduras (RTB)
  • San Pedro Sula, Honduras (SAP)
  • San Salvador, El Salvador (SAL)
  • Tegucigalpa, Honduras (TGU)

Mail-in testing 72 hours before travel:

  • Mail-in nasal swab administered by ADL Health
  • Eligible customers will receive detailed information about the test and how to purchase via email 14 days prior to their trip. Be sure that you have updated contact info on file with United.
  • Self-administered test; travelers must take the test and mail it back 72 hours prior to travel
  • Travelers will receive a digital copy of results 24-48 hours prior to travel. Please check your destination’s requirements for how to present your results for boarding, entry or bypassing quarantine. Most countries accept digital results, but printing is always a good backup.
  • $119 per test

Frequently asked questions

  • We have several resources for you to check country-specific travel requirements, including our Important Notices page and our database of international document and entry requirements.

    The process for each country may vary and requirements change often, so we recommend checking these resources now as well as immediately before your trip.

  • ADL Health will email your results using the contact information you will input when you purchase the test.

  • ADL Health and United are working together to ensure customers receive their testing results in time for their departure. Customers will not be able to purchase a test within 72 hours of their flight. At least 72 hours is required for shipping time to you, shipping back to ADL, and the lab processing your test. Customers must also mail their tests 72-48 hours prior to departure to ensure results are returned to them in time for their flight. For further questions around ADL’s processing time, call 800-834-3522.

  • If you test positive for COVID-19, you won’t be able to fly at that time and should contact your local healthcare provider. Following CDC guidelines, you will not be able to travel on United for at least 10 days after the date you tested positive and only after you have two successive negative COVID-19 results that were administered at least 24 hours apart. Once you’ve had two negative tests, we’ll re-book you with no change fees.

*International travel requirements and restrictions change rapidly. For the most updated information, visit our database of international document and entry requirements.

San Francisco to Hawaii

United has teamed up with Dignity Health-GoHealth Urgent Care and Color on two testing options, now available to travelers originating from San Francisco and traveling to Hawaii. These tests are pre-approved by the state of Hawaii and available to those over five years old.

Types of COVID-19 tests

You can choose between two testing options and must present a negative test result in order to bypass Hawaii’s quarantine requirement. You can also arrange a COVID-19 test independently, as long as it’s approved by the state of Hawaii. Any of these approved testing options will allow you to bypass Hawaii’s mandatory 14-day quarantine if you present a negative test result; it is not a requirement to receive your test through United.

Day-of-travel rapid testing

  • Administered by Dignity Health-GoHealth Urgent Care at a testing facility located at the international terminal, Courtyard A
  • Eligible customers will receive detailed information about the test and how to sign up via email one week prior to their trip. Be sure that you have updated contact info on file with United.
  • Customers must pre-register to reserve their testing timeslot and obtain a test. No walk-in appointments will be available.
  • Results are provided in approximately 15 minutes
  • $250 per test

Drive-through testing 72 hours before travel

  • Administered by Color at a testing facility located at the United technical operations facility parking lot
  • Eligible customers will receive detailed information about the test and how to sign up via email one week prior to their trip. Be sure that you have updated contact info on file with United.
  • Customers must pre-register to reserve their testing timeslot and obtain a test. No walk-in appointments will be available.
  • Most results are provided within 48 hours
  • $105 per test

Hawaii requires all customers entering the state to upload their testing results into the Safe Travels website for validation. Once you have scheduled and completed your approved test, you will need to create an account and upload your results prior to your trip. You must have your negative test result uploaded to the Safe Travels website for your departure from SFO. If you do not have your negative test result uploaded in time for your departure, you will have to quarantine in Hawaii for 14 days or the duration of your trip, even if you obtain a negative result after landing. To get started, visit https://travel.hawaii.gov/#/

Frequently asked questions

  • We recommend making your appointment shortly after you receive your information via email as spots do fill quickly, especially for the day-of-travel test. Hawaii also accepts test results from certain other providers.

  • These testing options are currently only available at San Francisco (SFO). However, we’re hoping to expand this program to other airports soon. Stay tuned!

  • Check Hawaii’s official FAQs as well as our Important Notices page to learn more about what you need for your trip to Hawaii.

  • If you test positive for COVID-19, you won’t be able to fly at that time and should contact your local healthcare provider. Following CDC guidelines, you will not be able to travel on United for at least 10 days after the date you tested positive and only after you have two successive negative COVID-19 results that were administered at least 24 hours apart. Once you’ve had two negative tests, we’ll re-book you with no change fees. Call 800-864-8331 to re-book your travel.

New York/Newark to London Heathrow

On November 16, we’ll begin a four-week trial on select dates of flight UA14 from New York/Newark to London Heathrow in which each traveler over 2 years old will be required to receive a free COVID-19 rapid test before boarding.

The goal of this program is ensure that all travelers on the trial flights have received a negative COVID-19 test, but it may not meet the testing requirements of your final destination. Be sure to check your full travel requirements to make sure you have what you need to enter your destination country.

Day-of-travel rapid testing

  • Administered by Premise Health at the United Club near gate C93 at New York/Newark
  • United will reach out to eligible customers (anyone booked on one of our trial flights) prior to their trip with detailed information including how to schedule their tests. Be sure you have updated contact information on file.
  • Appointments are required and must be booked in advance
  • Results are provided in approximately 30 minutes
  • Testing is free to travelers booked on the select flights and is mandatory for boarding

Frequently asked questions

  • This trial will run on a total of 12 flights: Flight UA14 from New York/Newark to London Heathrow operating on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, from Monday, November 16 to Friday, December 11. We’ll reach out to you with more information if you’re scheduled to travel on one of these itineraries.

  • When you book your flight on united.com, you’ll see an indication that a COVID-19 test is required on that flight, and you’ll be asked to confirm that you’re willing to participate in this trial and agree to additional terms and conditions. If you’ve already booked your flight, United will contact you with more details, and you’ll have the option to re-book if you don’t want to travel on the trial flight.

  • Yes. You can change your flight in advance without change fees through December 31, 2020, using united.com or our mobile app. You can also reach a United representative at 1-800-UNITED1 to discuss alternative travel options.

  • Yes, if there is availability. You can change your flight without change fees through December 31, but you may have to pay a fare difference if your new flight is priced higher than your original flight.

  • Yes. All travelers on the eligible flights who are over 2 years old must receive a test through United, and may not be able to board if they haven’t, or if their test is positive for COVID-19.

    If you receive a positive test result, you won’t be able to fly at that time and should contact your local healthcare provider. Following CDC guidelines, United will re-book you once you test negative and are no longer symptomatic.

  • No. Receiving this test is mandatory for all travelers on the flight, including the crew, and you may not be able to board if you don’t receive the test.

  • As part of this program, you’ll receive an NAAT or “rapid” nasal swab test for COVID-19. Some countries may also accept this test for entry or to bypass quarantine, but some may require a different type of test, such as an RT-PCR test. We have several resources for you to check country-specific travel requirements, including our Important Notices page and our database of international document and entry requirements.

  • All customers, regardless of city of origin, are required to complete a COVID-19 test on the day of departure from New York/Newark to London. The testing facility at New York/Newark is located at the United Club near gate C93, so you won’t need to exit the secured area to take the test.

  • Appointments are required for each traveler on the flight. We advise you to schedule your test as early as possible and allow at least 3 hours between your appointment time and departure time.

  • By travelling on this COVID-19 tested United Airlines, Inc. (“United”) flight, you agree, for yourself and/or any minors for which you are the parent or guardian, to the following terms and conditions:

    • You will be tested for COVID-19 in accordance with these terms and conditions at no additional cost. Children, two years of age or younger, will not be tested and these terms and conditions will not apply to them. For all other passengers, being tested is a condition of carriage with respect to this flight.
    • You should sign-up for a testing appointment in advance of travel using the link that will be sent to via email or SMS text that we have on file.
    • You will be required to complete an Abbott ID Now – NAAT, rapid COVID-19 nasal swab test, administered by Premise Health (“Testing Provider”) at the Newark Liberty International Airport, immediately before travel on the day of departure. Once the swab has been taken, the result will be communicated to you by the Testing Provider within 45 minutes. While waiting, you cannot leave the designated area. If you receive a negative result, you will be notified by the Testing Provider. If you receive a positive result, you will be notified by the Testing Provider and be asked to leave the airport.
    • You agree that the Testing Provider can share your personal data, including your COVID-19 test results, with United. United will process this information for the purpose of facilitating this flight, changing your reservation for this flight, protecting United’s rights and interests and the rights and interests of other individuals, including, without limitation, supporting the safety of other flights, and as permitted by law. United may disclose this information to designated staff and third parties providing services on behalf of United, as necessary for the purposes described above. In addition, United may disclose this information to other third parties, such as the CDC or TSA, as necessary to comply with law. To the extent the Testing Provider is subject to the requirements of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, as amended (“HIPAA”), you acknowledge and agree that (1) you will execute a valid HIPAA consent form presented to you by the Testing Provider at the time of testing; and (2) even in the absence of a valid HIPAA consent form, the disclosure to United by the Testing Provider is permitted under the HIPAA exception for disclosures intended to prevent a serious or imminent threat to the health and safety of others.
    • A negative test result will be required to travel. You will need to present your negative test result to a designated United Representative prior to boarding your aircraft. Children, two years of age or younger, will not be tested and these terms and conditions will not apply. You understand and acknowledge that a negative test result for you or any other passenger on this flight does not mean that you or other passengers are COVID-19 free.
    • If your test result is positive, you will not be permitted to board the aircraft. Checked luggage, if any, will be returned to you. You should contact United for a refund or to rebook at no additional cost for a later travel date at least 10 days after the date you tested positive and only after you have two successive negative COVID-19 results that were administered at least 24 hours apart. Other than refunding or rebooking your flight, you agree that any adverse consequences stemming from your test result will be borne by you alone. Please note that your information, including your COVID-19 test results, will be shared by the Testing Provider with United regardless of whether you change this flight, and such information will be retained by United for use in accordance with the purposes described above.
    • You acknowledge that lab test results are not guaranteed to be accurate, and you may receive a false positive or a false negative finding. You agree that United bears no responsibility for an inaccurate test result and any resulting consequences.
    • If you have any questions about these additional terms and conditions for this flight, you should contact United Reservations at 1-800-UNITED-1.
    • Before the day of travel, if you choose not to travel on this flight you should Contact United Reservations to discuss alternate travel options.