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Updated January 2023

Following a sudden rise in Covid-19 cases in India, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has now released some new arrival guidelines for international arrivals into India to curb the spread of the new Covid-19 variant BF.7 in India

Read more about the latest COVID-19-related testing and quarantine guidelines in Kerala here.

Kerala travel guidelines

As per the latest guidelines released by India’s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), the following requirements have to be followed by international arrivals travelling to Kerala:

Planning for travel

  • All travellers should preferably be fully vaccinated as per the approved primary schedule of vaccination against COVID-19 in their country
  • Travellers from high-risk countries, including China, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Singapore and Thailand, will be required to undergo certain additional entry requirements, including:
    • Submitting complete and factual information in the self-declaration form on the online Air Suvidha portal ( before the scheduled travel, including the last 14 days’ travel details.
    • Upload a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR report on the Air Suvidha portal, with the test being conducted within 72 hours prior to undertaking the journey.
    • Each passenger shall also submit a declaration with respect to the authenticity of the report and will be liable for criminal prosecution if found otherwise.
    • They should also give an undertaking on the portal or otherwise to the Ministry of Civil Aviation, Government of India, through concerned airlines before they are allowed to undertake the journey that they would abide by the decision of the appropriate government authority for any post-arrival requirement including home/institutional quarantine/ self-health monitoring, as warranted.

During travel

  • In-flight announcements about the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, including precautionary measures to be followed (preferable use of masks and following physical distancing), shall be made on flights/travel and at all points of entry.
  • Any passenger having symptoms of COVID-19 during travel shall be isolated as per standard protocol, i.e. the said passenger should be wearing a mask, isolated and segregated from other passengers in flight/travel and shifted to an isolation facility subsequently for follow-up treatment.

On arrival

Travellers on arrival at any Kerala airport will have to go through the following requirements:

  • De-boarding should be done, ensuring physical distancing.
  • Thermal screening should be done in respect of all the passengers by the health officials present at the point of entry.
  • The passengers found to be symptomatic during screening shall be immediately isolated and taken to a designated medical facility as per health protocol, as mentioned above.
  • The following protocol post arrival shall also be followed:
    • A sub-section (2% of the total passengers in all incoming international flights) shall undergo random post-arrival testing at the airport on arrival, irrespective of the port of departure.
    • Such travellers on each flight shall be identified by the concerned airlines (preferably from different countries). They will submit the samples and shall be allowed to leave the airport thereafter.
    • If such travellers’ samples are tested positive, their samples should be further sent for genomic testing at the INSACOG laboratory network.
    • They shall be treated/isolated as per the laid down standard protocol.
  • All travellers should self-monitor their health post arrival also shall report to their nearest health facility or call the National helpline number (1075)/ State Helpline Number in case they have any symptoms suggestive of COVID-19.

Please note that children under 12 years of age are exempted from both pre-departure and post-arrival random
testing. However, if found symptomatic for COVID-19 on arrival or during the period of self-monitoring period, they shall undergo testing and be treated as per the laid down protocol.

COVID-19 testing facilities in Kerala

Along with government medical centres, numerous private labs have been set up following ICMR guidelines to meet the COVID-19 testing demands in Kerala. There are an estimated 52 government hospitals/laboratories and 146 private ones in the state of Kerala, providing COVID-19 testing using various diagnostic methods. Here is an updated list of ICMR-approved COVID-19 testing labs for your reference.

It’s recommended to call the toll-free number 1075 or the central helpline number +91-11-23978046 for information before going to get tested. In Kerala, you may also call 0471-255205, the state helpline number for COVID-19.

Please carry your government ID card (Aadhar card/Passport/Voter ID) and proof of your address when you proceed to get tested at any of the laboratories/hospitals.

Travellers will be charged INR 300 for an RT PCR test, INR 2,350 for an expert NATA test, INR 1,225 for a TrueNat test, INR 1,025 for an RT Lab test, and INR 100 for a rapid antigen test, including all charges. If you are getting yourself tested at the airport on arrival, the test cost will remain the same as prescribed by the state.


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