Government releases international travel rules

By Gaye Davis for EWN

Government on Wednesday revealed a long list of countries deemed to be high risk in terms of COVID-19 and said leisure travellers from these lands would not be allowed into South Africa.

Countries deemed to be high risk included the United Kingdom, the United States of America, India, France, Russia, Switzerland, and the Netherlands.

Ministers on the National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC) briefed the media on the easing of international travel restrictions with effect from Thursday.

High-skills visa holders, investors, and diplomats from high-risk countries, as well as South African citizens wishing to come home, would, however, be allowed entry – but should adhere to certain conditions.

Home Affairs Minister Dr Aaron Motsoaledi ran through the countries deemed to be high risk due to their COVID-19 infection and death rates.

Government would review the list fortnightly as infection and death rates change and would inform the public accordingly.

China was deemed to be low risk and anyone travelling to South Africa from an African country is permitted to enter.

International Relations Minister Naledi Pandor said all travellers entering South Africa would need a negative COVID-19 test performed no more than 72 hours before departure and would be screened on arrival.

Should they show symptoms, and test positive and could not self-isolate; they would be sent to a state-identified facility. Pandor said travellers would need mandatory travel insurance to cover any costs arising from this.

High-risk countries as at 30 September 2020 are as follows:

  1. Albania
  2. Argentina
  3. Armenia
  4. Austria
  5. Bahrain
  6. Belgium
  7. Bolivia
  8. Bosnia and Herzegovina
  9. Brazil
  10. Chile
  11. Columbia
  12. Costa Rica
  13. Croatia
  14. Czech Republic
  15. Denmark
  16. Ecuador
  17. France
  18. Georgia
  19. Greece
  20. Guatemala
  21. Guyana
  22. Honduras
  23. Hungary
  24. Iceland
  25. India
  26. Iran
  27. Iraq
  28. Ireland
  29. Israel
  30. Jamaica
  31. Jordan
  32. Kuwait
  33. Lebanon
  34. Luxemburg
  35. Maldives
  36. Malta
  37. Mexico
  38. Moldova
  39. Montenegro
  40. Nepal
  41. Netherlands
  42. North Macedonia
  43. Oman
  44. Palestine
  45. Panama
  46. Paraguay
  47. Peru
  48. Portugal
  49. Puerto Rico
  50. Qatar
  51. Romania
  52. Russia
  53. Slovakia
  54. Suriname
  55. Switzerland
  56. Ukraine
  57. United Emirates
  58. United Kingdom
  59. USA
  60. Venezuela

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