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Many countries have eased travel guidelines for passengers arriving from India in the view of rapid decline in fresh COVID-19 cases.
While scheduled international flights have been suspended in India since March 2020, airlines have been operating special international passenger flights since July 2020 under the air bubble arrangements with 28 countries.
Take a look at travel guidelines for Indians travelling to UK, US, UAE and other countries:
The United States on August 17 has eased travel restrictions for India lowering it to Level 2: Moderate. It encourages U.S. citizens to exercise increased caution throughout the country due to possible risks to their safety and security.
However, the travel of Indians to the US remains prohibited except for certain categories . Since May this year, the United States had banned the entry of travellers from India.
Frequently Asked Questions
A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.
There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.
Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.
The current US restrictions have been repeatedly renewed in 30-day increments and are expected to be extended before they expire on August 21.
According to the latest UAE government health requirements, each passenger must get a negative RT-PCR report at the airport six hours prior to boarding the aircraft.
The UK government on August 17 updated its official travel advisory for India to reflect the country’s upgraded status under the COVID-19 based traffic light system, no longer advising against all but essential travel.
India moved from the UK’s red list travel ban to amber on August 8. Entering the UK from places on the amber list requires three COVID-19 tests the first, at least three days prior to departure; the second, on the day of arrival or before Day 2; and the third, on or after Day 8.
Fully vaccinated British nationals returning from India no longer need to quarantine but must arrange a pre-departure test while still in the country.
To qualify as fully vaccinated, only UK, EU and US-approved vaccines are recognised and require passengers to have had their second vaccine injection two full weeks before you travel.
Other nationals, vaccinated abroad or unvaccinated, are required to self-isolate at their declared address on the compulsory passenger locator form.
Despite a decline in new COVID-19 cases, India continues to remain on the red list of several EU countries . The Czech Republic has imposed a ban for passengers arriving from India, and only Czech nationals and residents can travel from this country.
Austria and Estonia and Iceland have put India on the red list. Travellers can reach the country only for fundamental reasons and must undergo a ten-day self-isolation time and double-testing.
India is placed on Ireland's designated state list, meaning travellers arriving from India must present a pre-travel PCR or antigen test and undergo a 14-day quarantine.
Hong Kong has placed India in the high-risk category due to the prevalence of the Delta variant of COVID-19. People arriving from India need a COVID-19 negative test report taken within 72 hours of the scheduled time of departure of the flight to Hong Kong.
Moreover, travellers also have to undergo 21 days of mandatory quarantine at a designated quarantine hotel starting on the day of arrival in Hong Kong.
Germany requires people entering the country who havent been vaccinated or recently recovered from COVID-19 to show a negative test result.
People arriving from countries listed in Germany’s highest risk category as virus variant areas will also have to present a test if they are vaccinated or have recently recovered. That list currently includes Brazil and South Africa but no European countries.
Kuwait recently announced that it will resume commercial flights with India and Egypt, among other countries, while adhering to the COVID-19 measures set by a ministerial committee.
The decision also includes resuming flights with Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Nepal, the government said.
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