Updated January 2023
After a year of relative calm and relaxing COVID-19 guidelines, following an uptick in new COVID-19 cases being reported globally, a few countries have renewed their entry restrictions, re-introducing quarantine on arrival to permit travellers into the country.
That being said, here is the complete list of countries currently mandating quarantine requirements for international passengers entering the country.
While some countries have reinstated the quarantine-for-entry requirement as detailed below, there remains a wide array of destinations travellers may visit without undergoing quarantine on arrival. To learn more about these quarantine-free destinations, please visit our article below.
Quarantine for passengers from China
Due to the surge of COVID-19 cases in China, some countries are reinstating new entry restrictions for travellers arriving from China. Some of the countries have mandated obtaining a negative RT-PCR test to be taken before departure from China, whereas some other countries have also mandated testing upon arrival and quarantine for travellers who test positive.
One of the first countries to announce new entry requirements for arrivals from China, Italy, has now announced that all airline travellers from China will be subject to mandatory testing upon arrival.
Therefore, travellers from China who undergo a COVID-19 test upon arrival in Italy and test positive will be subject to quarantine. To end the isolation period, other tests with negative results are required to be performed.
Please note that children under the age of six, crew members of airlines, officials of the EU or international organisations, diplomatic agents, administrative and technical staff of diplomatic missions, consular officials and employees, military personnel, and those returning from international missions, and of the Police Forces, will be exempt from the testing on arrival and quarantine requirement.
As announced by the authorities, travellers arriving in Japan from China (excluding Hong Kong and Macau) will now be subject to COVID-19 testing on arrival in the country. Travellers who test positive for COVID-19 will have to quarantine for seven days.
As per the latest guidelines for international arrivals laid down by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, India, travellers from high-risk countries, including China, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong and Thailand, entering India will have to give an undertaking on the online Air Suvidha 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.
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.
Following a new decree, France has now introduced mandatory health checks for arrivals from China. Travellers aged 12 and older are required to present a negative COVID-19 test result taken within the last 48 hours before departure to France.
Furthermore, travellers will also be required to sign a specific certificate confirming that they have not been in contact with an infected person two weeks before their flight to France and do not have any symptoms of the virus. By signing the certificate, travellers will also express consent their consent to take a test which will be performed on arrival.
However, if a traveller tests positive for COVID-19 on arrival, they will be required to quarantine for seven days and undertake a PCR test once the isolation period concludes.
According to an announcement made by the Ministry of Health and Welfare in South Korea, all travellers arriving from the People’s Republic of China (PRC) must take a PCR test within 24 hours of arrival to Korea. If the travellers test positive, they will be quarantined in Korea for seven days.
Travellers arriving on direct flights from mainland China, as well as from Taiwan’s outlying Kinmen and Matsu islands, are required to undergo on-arrival COVID-19 testing in the country. Furthermore, travellers must also self-monitor their health at their accommodation for seven days by taking rapid antigen tests (RAT) every 48 hours.
Please note that the measures will remain at least until 31 January 2023, and extensions are possible.
Malaysia will screen all arriving passengers for fever, and wastewater from aircraft arriving in China will be sent to the National Public Health Laboratory for polymerase chain reaction testing before being dispatched for genome sequencing if the results are positive for COVID-19.
“All travellers arriving from abroad, including China, at the international entry points will undergo fever screening. Those who have been detected with fever, symptoms, or through self-declaration will be referred to a quarantine centre or the health authorities for re-examination. In the event of suspected COVID-19, a test will be carried out,” Health Minister Zaliha Mustafa announced.
Effective 3 January 2023, Morocco has now become the very first country this year to ban all passengers from China, regardless of their vaccination status or nationality.
Quarantine for all inbound passengers
Some countries are currently still implementing quarantine requirements for international travellers looking to enter their borders. Please note that due to the fluidity of the situation, the following list of countries may not be an exhaustive one. Furthermore, the implemented quarantine measures will likely be subject to change.
As per the latest guidelines for international arrivals laid down by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, India, a sub-section, that is, 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.
If such travellers’ samples tested positive, their samples should be further sent for genomic testing at the INSACOG laboratory network, and they shall be treated or isolated as per the laid down 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.
As per the latest guidelines released by the Government of Pakistan Border Health Services, 2% of passengers arriving on international flights will be randomly selected and tested for COVID-19. Travellers who test positive will be advised to self-isolate for five days.
According to the latest guidelines announced by the authorities in Chile, international arrivals will be subjected to a COVID-19 test upon arrival. If the traveller refuses or obtains a positive result, they must carry out mandatory quarantine for five days at a sanitary residence.
Indonesia is only open to vaccinated travellers at this time. Non-vaccinated may enter the country only with a negative COVID-19 test, a 5-day hotel quarantine, and the agreement to receive the first dose of the vaccine at their quarantine hotel.
All travellers must isolate until a PCR test returns a negative result. If it is positive, they must quarantine for 14 days.
All travellers, regardless of their vaccination status, may be subjected to additional health screening measures on arrival in Bangladesh. Furthermore, travellers with COVID-19 symptoms will be required to take a PCR test, and those testing positive will be required to isolate at a government-authorised facility for at least seven days until they test negative in a subsequent PCR test.
Please note that the Bangladesh authorities may retain the passports of travellers in quarantine and will return them at the end of the quarantine period.
Travellers arriving in Malaysia and testing positive for the on-arrival COVID-19 test are required to undergo a seven-day quarantine period. However, they will have the option of undergoing a supervised RTK-Antigen test on day 4. If they test negative, the arrivals will be released from quarantine.