Frequently Asked Questions

How can we help you?

We’ve put together a list of commonly asked questions to provide you with more information about organising a COVID-19 test before you plan to travel.  Please browse the questions below and if we haven’t answered your query, please send us an email.

The real-time RT-PCR (reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction) test is a combined nasal and throat swab sample.

This test is looking for the genetic material of SARS-CoV-2; the virus that causes COVID-19.

This is the gold standard test currently required for all countries.

It is your responsibility to ensure that you are aware of the testing requirements of the state or country you are traveling to.

Please check with your embassy, travel agent, airline, shipping line, or destination country or state for testing requirements.

There is a collection window that you must present within to comply with your state/country/airline/ship.

Please ensure that collection complies with this time-frame.

For example, if your required testing time window is 48 hours before departure, please do not present before the 48 hour time window or after 40 hours.

During your COVID-19 collection booking process with us, you will be provided with a date calculator outlining guaranteed testing timeframes.

IMPORTANT: If you present within 40 hours of departure, you may not receive your result in time.


Travel requirement
COVID-19 testing within 72 hours of departure

Departing Australia
3 pm on 19 November

Collection window
3 pm 16 November to 3 pm 18 November

COVID-19 testing window example

In this example above, you must not present before 3 pm on 16 November, or after 3 pm on 18 November.

A pathology request is a form containing your information that you must bring along with you when your sample is collected.

You will receive this form via email which is password encrypted, with a 128-bit key, after you have purchased the test.

This Pathology Request form will be accompanied by a tax invoice. It is important to retain this invoice as there is a PIN number on the top right-hand corner which you will need to access your pathology report.

It is essential that you print and bring this form with your passport, to the COVID travel collection centre.

To view an example request form and tax invoice, click the image below.

Sht Example Request Form

Your request form is valid for three months from the day you order your test. You can use it any time up to its expiry date. Please remember to check with the embassy, travel agent, airline, shipping line, or destination country or state for COVID-19 testing requirements.

Unfortunately, Internet Explorer does not support the use of Sonic Travel Testing.

Compatible browsers to book and pay for your COVID-19 test through Sonic Travel Testing are ChromeEdgeFirefox, and Safari.

The Sonic Travel Testing service terms and conditions of use can be viewed by clicking on the button below.

Terms and conditions of use

Updated Thursday, 14 October 2021