From UK to UAE, list of countries that have suspended flights from India amid COVID-19 surge
New Delhi, Apr 23: Amid COVID-19 surge, several countries have imposed fresh travel restrictions or issued advisories against travelling to India. On Thursday, The United Arab Emirates joined the list of countries that have suspended flights from India.
The travel ban will come into effect from 11.59 pm on Saturday, April 24, and is subject to review after 10 days, the Gulf News reported.
Passengers who have transited through India in the last 14 days will also not be permitted to board from any other point to the UAE, the report said.
However, departure flights will continue to operate and the ban will not extend to UAE citizens, diplomatic passport holders and official delegations, it said.
Anil Punjabi, chairman, Eastern Region, Travel Agents' Federation of India said travel agents in India received the notification from Emirates.
Effective April 24, 2021 and for the next 10 days, Emirates flights from India to the UAE will be suspended. Furthermore, passengers who have transited through India in the last 14 days will not be accepted to travel from any other point to the UAE.
The UK on Monday added India to its COVID-19 travel "red list", which effectively bans all travel from the country and makes a 10-day hotel quarantine compulsory for UK residents arriving back to the country.
The ban means that those with valid residency rights returning to the UK after the deadline on Friday face the additional financial burden of compulsory hotel quarantine and tests costs, estimated at around 2,000 pounds per person.
Hong Kong banned flights from India for 14 days from Tuesday. "The Government announced today (April 18) the invocation of the place-specific flight suspension mechanism for India, Pakistan, and the Philippines. From 00:00 on April 20, all passenger flights from these places will be prohibited from landing in Hong Kong for 14 days," a Hong Kong government release said.
The release placed the three countries under the category of "extremely high-risk Group A", so as to restrict persons who have stayed there from boarding for Hong Kong.
Pakistan on Monday decided to ban for two weeks travellers coming from India.
France on Wednesday announced a ban on travel from India from Saturday.
Oman announced it will bar travel from India along with Pakistan and Bangladesh from April 24, the report said. The entry ban for passengers from India to Saudi Arabia and Kuwait continues, it said.
On Tuesday, the US advised its citizens to avoid travelling to India, even if they are fully vaccinated as there is a ''very high level'' of COVID-19 in the country.
"Because of the current situation in India even fully vaccinated travellers may be at risk for getting and spreading COVID-19 variants and should avoid all travel to India. If you must travel to India, get fully vaccinated before travel. All travellers should wear a mask, stay 6 feet from others, avoid crowds, and wash their hands," said US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
New Zealand had also banned the entry of travellers from India, including its own citizens, till April 28. The decision was taken after New Zealand reported 23 new COVID-19 cases of which 17 were from India.
Though Singapore has not banned flights, it has asked citizens who are travelling from India to quarantine themselves for 21 days amid fears over the double mutant strain of COVID-19.
Meanwhile, several airlines from India have issued fresh guidelines for passengers travelling from India to Dubai.
Indigo, SpiceJet, Vistara and Air India Express shared the fresh guidelines on their respective Twitter accounts.
- Passengers will have to produce a negative COVID-19 test report issued not more than 48 hours from departure of their flights.
- The COVID-19 test report showing that the passenger is not positive must be in Arabic or English.
- The test report must have a QR code. Those not carrying a report with a QR code will not be allowed to travel.
- Children under the age of 12 do not have to produce a negative RT-PCR test result.
- The advisory is effective from Thursday, April 22.