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Country Profile

United Kingdom

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is a highly developed constitutional monarchy composed of Great Britain (England, Scotland, and Wales) and Northern Ireland.  Read the Department of State Background Notes on the United Kingdom for additional information. Tourist facilities are widely available throughout the United Kingdom and Gibraltar.

United Kingdom


Image of United Kingdom
Country Name: United Kingdom
Continent: Europe
Capital City: London
Boundary Countries:


Recommended Hospitals in Capital:

London Bridge Hospital, The Wellington Hospital, Hospital of St. John & St. Elizabeth, The Harley Street Clinic, Priory Hospital (North London & Roehampton)

Main Cities:

London, Glasgow, Birmingham, Bristol, Belfast, Edinburgh, Liverpool, Leeds, Manchester, London, Glasgow, Birmingham, Bristol, Belfast, Edinburgh, Liverpool, Leeds, Manchester

Country Size: 244,820 sq km, note: includes Rockall and Shetland Islands
Population: 60,609,153



English, Welsh (about 26% of the population of Wales), Scottish form of Gaelic (about 60,000 in Scotland)

Currency: British Pound (GBP)
Predominant Religions:

Christian (Anglican, Roman Catholic, Presbyterian, Methodist) 71.6%, Muslim 2.7%, Hindu 1%, other 1.6%, unspecified or none 23.1%

National Holidays: The UK does not celebrate one particular national holiday.
Economic Status:

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is a highly developed constitutional monarchy comprised of Great Britain (England, Scotland, and Wales) and Northern Ireland. The UK, a leading trading power and financial center, is one of the quintet of trillion dollar economies of Western Europe


Army, Royal Navy (includes Royal Marines), Royal Air Force

US Presence:

U.S. Embassy London
33 Nine Elms Lane
London, SW11 7US
United Kingdom

U.S. Consulate General in Edinburgh, Scotland
3 Regent Terrace, Edinburgh EH7 5BW
Telephone: 013-1556-8315
Telephone from the U.S.: 011-44-13-1556-8315 
Emergency after hours telephone: 012-2485-7097
Emergency after hours telephone from the United States: 011-44-12-2485-7097
Fax: 013-1557-6023
Fax from the United States: 011-44-13-1557-6023. 

U.S. Consulate General in Belfast, Northern Ireland
Danesfort House, 228 Stranmillis Road, Belfast BT9 5GR
Telephone: 028-9038-6100
Telephone from the United States: 011-44-28-9038-6100
Fax: 028-9068-1301
Fax from the United States: 011-44-28-9068-1301

There is no U.S. consular representation in Gibraltar.  Passport questions should be directed to the U.S. Embassy in Madrid, located at Serrano 75, Madrid, Spain; telephone: 34-91-587-2200 and fax: 34-91-587-2303.  All other inquiries should be directed to the U.S. Embassy in London.

Document Requirements:

The UK Border Agency (UKBA) is now in the process of fully implementing a five-tier regulation system that affects Americans coming to the United Kingdom as well as American citizens and dependents already in the country.  Information on the new, points-based system can be found on the UKBA web site.

Companies and individuals intending to employ American citizens, or other nationals from countries beyond the European Economic Area and Switzerland, are required to apply to the UKBA for a sponsorship license.  Information on the sponsorship license can be found on the UKBA web site.

Educational establishments must also apply for a sponsorship license. Even American educational institutions that only offer short-term study abroad programs in their own premises in the United Kingdom to students who are enrolled in the United States, and who come to the United Kingdom for one or two semesters before returning home to finish their degree courses, must apply for a license from the UKBA.  Information on the license for educational establishments can be found on the UKBA web site.

Students and prospective students who intend to stay longer than six months, and those coming for less than six months but who wish to work while studying, are required to obtain a student or prospective student visa before traveling to the United Kingdom.  Failure to do so will result in the student or prospective student being refused entry to the United Kingdom. Information on student visas can be found on the UK web site. Students may apply online.  Note, too, that charity workers, religious workers, and other temporary workers, even those performing unpaid duties, are required to obtain a visa prior to traveling to the United Kingdom.  Information on temporary workers can be found on the UKBA web site.

If travelers or sponsors have any questions about requirements for a visa, please refer to the UKBA web site.

Travelers must be outside the United Kingdom, the Channel Islands, and the Isle of Man when they make an application for a visa.

It is the traveler’s personal responsibility to ensure that he/she has the appropriate permission to enter the United Kingdom.  The U.S. Embassy in London cannot intervene with any application, nor can it secure entry on behalf of American citizens who arrive without a visa when one is required.

Information about dual nationality or the prevention of international child abduction can be found on our website.  For further information about customs regulations, please read our customs information sheet.

Major Airports:

Airports:  471,  Airports w/paved runways:  334

London, Heathrow, United Kingdom, Heathrow Airport Ltd, 234 Bath Road, 2nd Floor, Heathrow Point West, Hayes, Middx, UB3 5AP, United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)870 000 0123
Fax: +44 (0)20 8745 6266, +44 (0)20 8745 4290
email: document.write('info' + cat + 'baa.c' + 'o.uk'); info@baa.co.uk
Website: www.baa.co.uk
Telex: 934892 

Airport Data: International
Customs Telex: 934891
Customs Hours: 24 hours

Servicing Airlines:
+ British Airways     + easyJet     + KLM    
+ ScotAirways     + Virgin Atlantic    
Risks and Precautions:

The United Kingdom is politically stable, with a modern infrastructure, but shares with the rest of the world an increased threat of terrorist incidents of international origin. There is also the potential for occasional and isolated violence related to the political situation in Northern Ireland (a part of the United Kingdom). The potential remains for sporadic incidents of street violence in isolated areas in Northern Ireland during the summer marching season (April to August), with tensions heightened during the month of July, especially around the July 12th public holiday. The United Kingdom benefit from generally low crime rates; however crime, including violent crime, has increased over the last few years, especially in London.

Mortality Statistics:

Infant MR total:  5.08 deaths/1,000 live births

Life expectancy at birth:  TOTAL 78.54 years   (male 76.09/female 81.13)

Immunization Indicators:

Required: None
Recommended: Hep A & B
Boosters: DPT, MMR as needed

Infectious Disease Concerns:

Legionnaries disease, caused by the Legionella bacterium, is sporadic; some outbreaks have involved tourists at resort hotels.  Also, please refer to “Recent Medical Concerns” section regarding radiation poisoning & mumps.

Overall Quality of Medical Services:

While medical services are widely available, free care under the National Health System is allowed only to UK residents and certain EU nationals.  Tourists and short-term visitors can expect charges that may be significantly higher than those assessed in the United States.

Providers in Network:
Direct Payment: 158
Referrals: 335
View Network Providers
Recent Medical Threats/ Concerns/Warnings:

In the 2009 CDC Measles Update, mention is made of the recent growing number of cases in the UK, specifically England and Wales. This information is available at http://wwwn.cdc.gov/travel/content/in-the-news/measles.aspx.
In November 2006, public health officials in the United Kingdom announced that they would be assessing individuals who visited several London locations on October 31, November 1, or November 2, for possible exposure to Polonium-210 (Po-210), a radioactive material. British officials found Po-210 contamination at several sites, including the Millennium Hotel Pine Bar, during an investigation related to the death of an individual from acute radiation poisoning.
Recent outbreaks of mumps have also been reported among adolescents and young adults in the United States and United Kingdom. The outbreak in the United States began in December 2005 and peaked in April 2006. As of mid-December 2006, the number of reported mumps cases in the United Kingdom had declined compared with the same period in 2005.

Communications Info:

Country Calling Code:  +44
Internet Country Code:  .uk


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Seven Corners is one of the industry's most experienced travel health insurance providers. The company serves leisure, student, business, government and missionary/volunteer travelers. It offers an extensive selection of international medical and travel insurance policies to U.S. citizens traveling overseas, or foreign nationals visiting the United States. Seven Corners has thousands of policy holders and a worldwide network of over 30,000 agents. The company created and maintains the industry's most comprehensive network of international health care providers that includes thousands of doctors, pharmacies and hospitals around the globe. Seven Corners is a member of the United States Travel Insurance Association; is GSA certified and is currently pursuing a SAS 70 Type II compliant designation. In addition to travel medical insurance, Seven Corners also offers health care administration to the government sector. The company is privately held and headquartered just north of Indianapolis in Carmel, IN.