Get us in your inbox

Whitby Abbey
Photograph: Shutterstock

Can you travel out of Tier 4 in England right now?

London has landed in the new Tier 4 – which means travel is totally off the cards, for now

James Manning
Written by
James Manning

So long, Tier 3: we hardly knew ye. As of Sunday December 20, London and several surrounding areas of England are moving into Tier 4 restrictions. The changes bring a whole new range of stuff you can’t do – and seriously restrict our movements. Here’s what you need to know about travel from the new Tier 4 areas.

Can I travel from a Tier 4 area?

Unlike most things right now, the rules here are simple. You’re not allowed to travel from Tier 4 areas at all, and should minimise trips within them.

Residents of Tier 4 must not leave their homes without a ‘reasonable excuse’. This is effectively a total ban on non-essential travel of any kind, let alone holidays or day trips.

Getting more specific, the government guidance says that those living under Tier 4 rules cannot travel out of their area for reasons other than work, education, medical care or looking after those in their support or childcare bubbles. A full list of exceptions is due to be published, but don’t expect it to include days out.

Here’s everything else you need to know about holidays in the UK right now.

Can I go on day trips within a Tier 4 area?

Within your area, you should not travel beyond ‘your village, town or the part of a city where you live’. Short journeys to do outdoor exercise are allowed, but you can only travel ‘a short distance within your Tier 4 area’ – so no travelling out of town for countryside walks.

Bear in mind too that most non-essential businesses within Tier 4 will be closed, though the outdoor grounds of visitor attractions are allowed to stay open for locals to exercise in.

Can I stay away from home if I live in a Tier 4 area?

Again, no: you are not allowed to stay away from your home overnight, including at second homes or caravans, or staying with friends (unless you’re in their official support bubble).

Within Tier 4, accommodation such as hotels and B&Bs must close, apart from in a few circumstances.

Can I travel out of a Tier 4 area for Christmas?

No, sadly not. The proposed Christmas travel relaxation has been scrapped for those in Tier 4 areas, meaning you will need to cancel any Christmas travel plans you had previously made.

Can I leave the country if I live in Tier 4?

I know this is getting boring, but: no. International travel is not allowed from Tier 4, except for essential journeys.

So that’s the long and short of it: you basically can’t travel, not even a little bit, until Tier 4 is lifted. Thinking of breaking the rules? Maybe don’t – you’ll be risking a fine of £200, or more for repeat offenders. Merry Christmas!

Here’s everything else you need to know about the new Tier 4 rules.

Popular on Time Out

    More on getaways

      Latest news


        The best things in life are free.

        Get our free newsletter – it’s great.

        Loading animation
        Déjà vu! We already have this email. Try another?

        🙌 Awesome, you're subscribed!

        Thanks for subscribing! Look out for your first newsletter in your inbox soon!