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Hong Kong to ease entry requirements for certain countries from 1st April

The government of Hong Kong has announced that it will lift its flight ban on 9 countries next week, signalling a shift from its ‘Zero COVID’ policy.

Hong Kong residents that are fully vaccinated and arriving from the United Kingdom, Australia, India, Canada, France, Nepal, United States, Philippines and Pakistan will be allowed to board flights to Hong Kong from 1st April 2022, provided that they have proof of a negative RT-PCR test. However, travellers will still need to quarantine in a hotel upon arrival in Hong Kong, but this will be cut to 7 days from 14.

The city’s leader Carrie Lam announced the news at a press conference on Monday, stating that the flight ban is causing distress to Hong Kong people stranded overseas and is also having an impact on the city’s businesses. In addition, she also announced that restrictions on social gatherings, mask-wearing and business and venue operations will begin to ease in three phases from 20th April 2022.

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Meanwhile, Reuters has reported findings from an academic study that reveal that the full reopening of international travel in Hong Kong will have “little marginal impact” on the spread of COVID-19, provided that travellers are fully vaccinated and have proof of a negative pre-departure Covid test.

Hong Kong is not yet allowing and will not allow travellers to skip quarantine, something which Malaysia and South Korea are planning to do from 1st April 2022 for fully vaccinated travellers.

Meanwhile, New Zealand has also announced plans to reopen to international travellers in April 2022.

What do you think of Hong Kong easing entry requirements for travellers from certain countries but not yet allowing quarantine free entry? Let me know in the comments section below.

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