New Delhi: Amid the deadly second wave of coronavirus, that saw spike in severe COVID cases in the country, several countries have banned travellers from India to set their feet on their lands. The international COVID travel ban has shattered many people’s dreams of travelling abroad this year. However, worry you not as there are still a handful of countries that have left their doors open to visitors from India. Also Read - 5 Offbeat Places in Uttarakhand That You Should Explore Post COVID Lockdown
Here is a list of countries that Indians can now travel to amid COVID pandemic
Yes, Turkey is now open for travellers from India; however, a 14-day institutional quarantine is mandatory for those arriving into the country. Travelers will have to undergo an RT-PCR test on the fourteenth day and only on testing negative, will they be allowed to leave the quarantine facility. As per the reports, passengers above the age of six are also required to submit an RT-PCR test carried out within 72 hours prior to departure. Also Read - Who All Require COVID Travel Pass in Kerala? Here's How to Apply For it
Russia is one of the few countries that is still open to people from India. One can apply for a tourist visa that is valid for up to 30 days for single entry or double entry. The traveller needs to provide an RT-PCR test, dated no less than three days prior to arrival. Passengers will also have to undergo a test on arrival. They will be permitted entry only if found negative. If found positive, you will be transferred to a COVID treatment facility. Also Read - Here's How to Register For Covishield, Covaxin, Sputnik Vaccine on Paytm, CoWIN And Aarogya Setu | Step-by-Step Guide
Red Square, Moscow.
Also, the vaccine tourism that we mentioned about earlier isn’t happening anymore. The travel company’s spokesperson told India Today that, “We are not doing the vaccine trip now. If people are interested in travelling to Russia, our company is currently providing that facility. The batch that was earlier booked for May 29 for the vaccine trip – our company is now taking those travellers for only a tour to Russia, no vaccine involved. We have not been given any permission because Russia has denied giving vaccines to foreigners. The vaccine tourism concept has been discontinued by us because it is illegal for us to take travellers there to get a vaccine. If we get an approval, we will surely update our followers.”
South Africa is yet to impose any COVID-related travel restriction on Indian tourists.
Currently, South Africa has not imposed any COVID travel restriction on people from India but flight options remain limited as do ports of entry. Travellers are expected to produce an RT-PCR test no older than 72 hours. If found to be symptomatic, they will undergo a test on their own expense. And if found positive, the traveller will have to undergo a 10-day quarantine.
Egypt is one of the popular destinations which is now open to travellers from India. However, all those arriving from India and other countries affected by COVID-19 will have to take a rapid DNA test upon arrival. The result will be shared in approx 15 minutes and if found positive, travelers will either be asked to return to their point of departure or will be isolated for at least two weeks.
Speaking to India Today, Rajiv Mehra, President of the Indian Association of Tour Operators (IATO), said, “There was some hope with countries like the Maldives, Dubai, Seychelles and Nepal opening up for Indian tourists briefly. But now we are badly hit again. Flights aren’t operating and countries aren’t even issuing e-visas.”
He said that India’s pandemic management will be its key test. “All countries will wait till India’s daily caseload drops to less than one lakh. Cases of black fungus now are a big setback too. We don’t see outbound traffic improving before July or August. As for arrival of foreign tourists into India, that could see improvement sometime next year and not before that,” he added.