Ready to travel again? So are we.
With Covid-19 cases decreasing, many countries around the globe are lifting their travel requirements and quarantine restrictions, and opening borders for tourists, after over two years. While quarantine remains in Hong Kong, the reduction to seven days means it’s finally semi-reasonable to plan international trips once again.
If you’re thinking about your next getaway, take a look at these countries that have scrapped their quarantine requirement on arrival. While some are allowing all tourists, regardless of them being vaccinated or not, to enter the country, the non-vaccinated are encouraged to get their shot so that they can travel without hassle.
The countries that have relaxed or dropped quarantine requirements
On 14 February, Mongolia reopened its borders for international passengers who are fully vaccinated. Starting 14 March, no testing is required before travelling or at the country’s borders for both vaccinated and un-vaccinated incoming tourists. In fact, you can get vaccinated here without any charges.
Indonesia, on 21 March, ended its quarantine restrictions for all incoming vaccinated foreign nationals, effective immediately. However, a negative COVID-19 test result is still a requirement for entering the country.
Even Vietnam — ‘Land of the Ascending Dragon,’ scrapped all quarantine requirements on 16 March but visitors need to provide a negative COVID-19 test.
The popular island nation of Mauritius removed the mandatory PCR test requirements for all fully vaccinated passengers on 12 March. As per the country’s new rule, they will no longer have to show proof of a negative COVID-19 result taken within 72 hours prior departure.
The UK relaxed all COVID-19 related travel restrictions, including testing requirements, starting 18 March. The new changes include removing the mandatory mask rule, no longer taking the tests or submitting the Passenger Locator Form. More so, the country will ease the remaining hotel quarantine facilities by March end. It has also kept contingency plans on standby to manage any future variants of concern (VoCs) of the virus.
Even the government of South Korea has removed the seven-day self-quarantine mandate beginning 21 March. However, you will still need to take the rapid antigen tests on the sixth and the seventh days after entering the country – as required by its health department.
Adding to the list is Ireland which removed all travel restrictions since 6 March. These include proof of vaccination or recovery, negative PCR test result, along with quarantine requirements or post-arrival testing in the country.
Iceland reopened its borders for both vaccinated and unvaccinated tourists from 25 February and no COVID-19 prevention measures such as quarantine or tests are required.
Similarly, Israel has permitted all tourists to visit the country from 1 March without any quarantine. However, unvaccinated tourists will have to present a negative RT-PCR test report or take an RT-PCR test on arrival.
As of 12 February, Norway dropped all mandates to provide any COVID-19-related documents and tests for its foreign travellers. More so, even masks and social distancing rules have been scrapped.
On March 7, Hungary announced the decision to join the list of countries ending quarantine. The country scrapped its requirements for vaccinations and COVID certifications for international visitors.
While Sweden may have dropped its preventive rules on 9 February, you will have to be vaccinated to visit the country.
New Zealand is permitting tourists from 60 countries on the visa-waiver list, including Malaysia, Singapore, the UK and the US, to enter from midnight on 1 May. But all tourists will still need to provide a negative covid test pre-departure and take two rapid antigen tests within the first week of their arrival in the country.
Its neighbour Australia has reopened its borders to vaccinated international tourists from 21 February.
Even Italy, Canada, Netherlands and India have lifted restrictions for international visitors. However, it is prudent to check quarantine rules and vaccines approved by the country you plan to visit.
(Hero and featured image credits: Benjamin Suter & Yves Alarie/unsplash)