Vaccine Certification - FAQs

Date published: 16 July 2021

Below are FAQs in relation to the Vaccine Certificate

Travel FAQs
Travel FAQs

All applications for vaccination certification have to go through NI Direct.

Please do not contact any of the vaccination centres - or the SSE Arena Box Office - about the certification scheme or your application. They are not dealing with queries from the public.

How do I get a vaccine certificate?

The Department of Health has introduced an automated method for NI citizens who have received both their covid vaccinations in NI to apply for COVID Vaccination certification.

You can apply for the certificate on NI Direct website.

For those who cannot apply online, requests for a paper certificate can also be made using the telephone service available from Tuesday 20 July  
0300 200 7814  Monday - Friday, 8am to 8pm.

This process will take longer than the digital process and you will be required to verify your identity in person by presenting documentation at an appointed time and location at one of the available DAERA (Department of  Agriculture , Environment & Rural Affairs) sites across NI. Once identity checks have been completed it may take up to 10 working days for the printed certificate to arrive.

Why do I need a vaccine certificate?

You may need a vaccine status certificate to prove that you have received both of your vaccinations in order to travel internationally.

Policies may change in the future, allowing travel with a certificate to certain countries without need for testing.

Entry requirements vary across different countries. You may be able to enter some countries having provided a range of test results.

You should check the entry and return requirement at or

Can anyone get a certificate?

The interim downloadable certificates are for those who plan to travel between 20 and 25 July 2021

Only NI residents who have had both vaccines in NI can receive this certificate at this time.

What information is on it?

The certificate provides some personal information; name, age, date of birth etc.

It also provides details of when you were vaccinated, which vaccine was used and the batch number of the vaccine used.

Do I need a certificate to attend venue, or sports and music events?

This certificate has been provided to support international travel.

Will I need a vaccine certificate for trips to England, Scotland, Wales or the Republic of Ireland?

You will NOT require the certificate for travel within the common travel area. You may require the certificate to access some services in areas within the Common Travel Area.

Please check regulations in each jurisdiction before you plan your trip as requirements are subject to change at short notice. or

I still have my vaccine card, can I use that to travel?

No, your vaccine card does not provide the level of detail required to support international travel regulations at this time. Only certificates that meet international standards and are of the type agreed in the UK (with necessary security features to prevent fraud) will be accepted.

Do children need a vaccine certificate to travel?

As children have not yet been vaccinated they will not require a certificate. They may require tests depending on the country you plan to visit. Please check the regulations for your destination and regulations for returning to NI as these are subject to change at short notice.

If I don’t have a vaccine certificate can I still go abroad?

Entry requirements for vary across different countries.  You may be able to enter some countries having provided a range of test results You should check the entry and return requirement at or

Can I use the NHS app?

No, your health care record is not shared with other UK nations. The NHS app links to GP systems in England and Wales, not NI.

Will I need a certificate to get into a venue in the Republic of Ireland?

Government officials are in contact with relevant authorities in the Republic of Ireland about this issue. Further details will be made public as soon as any decision is taken.

Why is the country I am travelling to not on the list?

It is important the public check the Foreign Office Travel advice website and determine what is necessary for entry to that country by UK citizens.

Please check regulations in each jurisdiction before you plan your trip as requirements are subject to change at short notice. or

That includes finding out whether PCR tests are required or if a period of self-isolation is necessary on arrival on return to NI.

When should I apply?

Please do not make travel arrangements without ensuring you have a valid certificate.




When will I get my certificate?

 If you apply for a paper copy of your certificate it may take 10 days to arrive at your address once you have completed all steps of your application including verifying your identity in person

Why am I being asked to get a PCR test when I could have got a certificate?

The restrictions imposed by countries regularly changes, however for many if not most countries a negative PCR test is considered an appropriate means to demonstrate the traveller is covid clear.  It is important to bear in mind that on return home it is essential a PCR test is undertaken in the country being visited before the flight home and there is a covid testing and isolation regime when at home.

I am going on holiday tomorrow.  Can I still apply for a certificate?

Unfortunately it is not possible to process a request for a paper certificate in that timeframe.

Can I apply for a certificate for my spouse/partner/family member?

You must register an account on NIDirect for each traveller.  If you apply under your own account, the certificate will be in your name.

If I have a vaccine certificate do I still need to isolate on my return to Northern Ireland?

 If you travel to an amber destination you will need to undertake a covid testing regime on return home,

If you travel to a red country you will have to follow the rules around managed isolation in a quarantine hotel.

Further details are available on NIDirect - Travel advice and guidance | nidirect(external link opens in a new window / tab)

 I have paid for PCR tests, can these costs be reimbursed?

 PCR tests for travel purposes are taken at cost to individuals.

Should I get my own PCR test and result before travelling?

Yes.  Travellers are encouraged to equip themselves with a negative PCR result before travelling, whether they have a vaccination certificate or not.

Is the certificate a legal document?

The certificate has no legal standing and should not be considered as a valid travel document.  It is only evidence that two doses of covid 19 vaccines have been administered to an individual.  Responsibility lies with the individual travelling to be fully aware of restrictions for the country being visited and for when they return home.

Further details are available on NIDirect – Travel advice and guidance | nidirect


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