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Filming in Northern Ireland

Travel to Northern Ireland during Covid-19


Self-isolation (“Quarantine”) exemptions for British qualifying HETV and film productions (and other screen sectors) have been suspended for the whole of the UK as of 4 am on Monday 18th January.

From 4am GMT on Monday 18 January, all international arrivals who departed from, or transited through, any country outside the Common Travel Area in the previous 10 days, will be required to both take a pre-departure test, and self-isolate immediately for 10 days on arrival.

Travellers who arrived before 0400 hours on Monday 18 January WILL be able to use the travel exemption.

Please note: Northern Ireland does not operate the ‘Test To Release’ scheme. This means that international travellers who use it in England and then move to NI will have to continue their isolation in Northern Ireland until the 10 days from their date of entry to the UK elapses.


Travellers to Northern Ireland from the Common Travel area will still need to follow the procedures outlined in the original Travel Exemption as follows:

Travellers will need to complete the passenger locator form before they travel to NI from the CTA. The form currently asks for ‘arrivals into UK’. For UK think ‘NI’ as the form hasn’t been updated yet. The form should be printed and carried during the self-isolation exemption period. The production company should also be provided with a copy for their records.

Travellers will need to remain in a ‘bubble’ for 10 days on arrival into NI. This means they can only leave their place of self-isolation to travel to their COVID-secure production locations and return back to their place of self-isolation during this period.

They should carry a letter from the studio or production company responsible for the production which includes the following information:

For High-End TV and Film:

  • Identification – Name, Date of Birth, Passport number
  • Northern Ireland address
  • Production name, dates and locations
  • Contact phone number for the relevant studio / production company
  • The reference number from the certificate issued by the BFI on behalf of DCMS to prove the production has qualified as British and therefore meets the terms of the exemption if applicable.

For other TV productions:

  • Identification – Name, Date of Birth and Passport number;
  • Production/ programme name, dates and location(s);
  • Name of the production company;
  • Role carried out (e.g. actor, director etc.)
  • Contact name and details at the studio/ production company;
  • Contact name and details of the Commissioner from the Broadcaster/ On-demand service provider;
  • Declaration of accommodation in England, Scotland or Northern Ireland and the address for the entire stay (covering the Applicable Quarantine Period from arrival).

Travellers to Northern Ireland from the Common Travel Area can still use the self-isolation exemptions for film and television workers. This means that, providing the travellers have not left the CTA in the previous 14 days, they can continue to move between their accommodation and one place of work during the 10-day isolation period. For details of the CTA Self Isolation Exemption requirements see below.

The Northern Ireland guidance has been updated and can be found here:

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