travel advisory

Swab tests being administered to passengers arriving at the New Delhi Railway Station on Aug. 5, 2021. (Qamar Sibtain/IANS photo)

NEW DELHI – India on Oct. 20 issued a revised travel advisory for international visitors, making a negative RT-PCR test report a must for all.

The fresh travel advisory says that fully-vaccinated travelers coming from a country with which India has arrangements for mutual acceptance of WHO approved Covid-19 vaccines shall be allowed to leave the airport after producing a negative RT-PCR test report, and will not have to undergo home quarantine and testing.

The revised guidelines will come into effect from Oct. 25.

India has agreements for mutual recognition of nationally or WHO recognized Covid-19 vaccines with 11 countries: the UK, France, Germany, Nepal, Belarus, Lebanon, Armenia, Ukraine, Belgium, Hungary, and Serbia.

Travelers from these countries who are fully vaccinated and have passed 15 days since completion of the vaccination, shall be allowed to leave the airport and have to monitor their health for 14 days post arrival, according to the revised guidelines.

They will have to submit a self-declaration form on the online Air Suvidha portal before their scheduled travel and upload a negative Covid-19 RT-PCR report, conducted within 72 hours prior to the journey. The travelers will also have to submit a declaration with respect to authenticity of the report.

"The global trajectory of Covid-19 pandemic continues to decline with certain regional variations. In view of increasing vaccination coverage across the globe and the changing nature of the pandemic, the existing guidelines for international arrivals in India have been reviewed," the government said.

Travelers from countries with which India does not have a mutual agreement have to take extra measures like submission of sample for post-arrival Covid test at the point of arrival, home quarantine for seven days, re-test on the eighth day of arrival in India and, if negative, further self-monitoring of their health for next seven days, irrespective of their Covid-19 vaccination status.

The guidelines say that the travelers from countries excluding those countries at risk, will be allowed to leave the airport and shall self-monitor their health for 14 days' post arrival. This is applicable to travelers from all countries including countries with which India has reciprocal arrangements for mutual acceptance of WHO approved Covid-19 vaccines.

The list of countries from where travelers would need to follow additional measures on arrival in India include South Africa, Brazil, Bangladesh, Botswana, China, Mauritius, New Zealand, Zimbabwe and countries in Europe including the UK.

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