Updated 08 August 2022
Following the outbreak of a new COVID-19 variant, Omicron, testing has become the norm worldwide to enable safe travelling. The government of Pakistan has also mandated strict testing measures across its borders to ensure that the virus spread is under control.
A negative PCR test is the most widely used and essential travel document, which is mandatory for an unvaccinated individual’s entry in Pakistan. Here are the latest PCR test entry requirements in Pakistan that you should be aware of.
PCR testing requirements in Pakistan
Following the declining cases of the new variant Omicron, The National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) of Pakistan has revised the PCR testing rules for all inbound passengers.
As per the National Institute of Health (NIH) directives, Rapid Antigen Tests (RAT) for inbound travellers are being conducted on a random basis at international airports across Pakistan in Islamabad, Karachi, and Lahore.
The main aim is to remain vigilant and conduct surveillance and monitoring at points of entry to rapidly detect any infected case.
— NIH Pakistan (@NIH_Pakistan) May 15, 2022
Effective 1 April 2022, only fully vaccinated travellers aged 18 years and above can undertake international travel on inbound or outbound flights to or from Pakistan. Those who are fully immunized against COVID-19 will not be required to possess a mandatory negative PCR test result prior to commencement of travel to Pakistan.
Minors below 12 years are exempt from having mandatory proof of COVID-19 vaccination, PCR test and uploading their details on the Pass Track app to travel to Pakistan.
Unvaccinated passengers above 12 years are allowed to travel to Pakistan but must present a negative PCR test result conducted within 72 hours before departing to Pakistan. Only the following category of unvaccinated passengers are currently allowed to travel to Pakistan:
- Travellers with valid medical reasons for being unvaccinated (proof of exemption required).
- Pakistani minors who are below 12 years of age.
- Foreign travellers who are below 18 years of age.
- Outbound travellers from Pakistan before 1 October 2021, whereby, such passengers travelling through connecting flights after entering Pakistan will be allowed to continue their domestic travel.
Travellers to Pakistan are required to provide their contact information through the Pass Track App available for android and iOS or through a web-based form. Passengers should ensure that they have uploaded their details of PCR test, passport copy, travel details on the app or have a printed copy of uploaded information generated by the app prior to the issuance of boarding passes at the point of original embarkation.
Check out our article here to know where to get a certified RT-PCR test for travel and other purposes in Pakistan.
What about testing at the airport?
There is mandatory screening for COVID-19 at all airports across Pakistan. All arriving passengers aged twelve years and above will be tested at random through Rapid Antigen Testing upon arrival in Pakistan.
Pakistani deportees will need to undergo mandatory on-arrival Rapid Antigen Testing at the airport.
Passengers who test positive will be quarantined for 10 days. You can check the province-wise list of quarantine facilities in Pakistan here.
Following categories are exempt from RT-PCR testing and PASS TRACK app uploading requirement:
- Children below 12 years.
- High-level international delegations
- Pakistani Deportees and Crew shall only be exempted from Pak Pass Track App, however, they will be tested on arrival using Rapid Antigen Testing and positive will be home quarantined for 10 days.