Switzerland: In an unexpected turn of events, Switzerland has reported that the Indian variant of COVID-19, that is wreaking havoc in India, has been detected in the country. Hence, the country has imposed stricter travel and quarantine rules for people from high-risk countries.Also Read - Covid-19: Centre Extends Insurance Scheme for Health Workers for Another 180 Days

According to the Reuters report, the first case of the Indian variant of COVID-19 has been confirmed in Switzerland, the Federal Office for Public Health (BAG) said, as other countries introduce travel bans to contain its spread. Also Read - Present Evidence Does Not Suggest That it is 'XE' Variant of Covid19, Say Reports

The case involved a passenger who arrived in Switzerland via a transit airport and not directly from India, which has been hit hard by a massive wave of infections in recent days, the BAG said on Twitter. The test took place at the end of March, BAG told Reuters on Sunday, adding the person entered Switzerland via a European country. Also Read - Covid-19 Can Increase the Risk of Heart Disease in the Future? Yes it can- Know How

In view of this, the Swiss authorities have now rules that travelers from high-risk countries will now be required to go into quarantine immediately after entering the country, reported SchengenVisaInfo.com.

Check out all about the latest COVID19 travel rules, RTPCR test and quarantine rules here

  • Travelers from India are subject to stricter entry restrictions.
  • All travelers eligible to enter the Swiss territory who reach the country by air are subject to the requirement of a negative result of a COVID-19 test, which they must present twice. First, the traveler must present the test when boarding for departure abroad and secondly at the Swiss airport.
  • Only PCR tests done within the last 72 hours are accepted.
  • Those who do not have a negative PCR test result must be tested in Switzerland immediately, with a rapid PCR or antigen test.
  • For those reaching Switzerland through land or boat, who have stayed in one of the high risk countries (in this case India) within the ten previous days, they will need to stay in quarantine, but also to present the negative results of a PCR test performed within the last 72 hours.
  • Those who do not hold a certificate showing they have tested for the virus need to be tested in Switzerland as soon as possible. Both rapid PCR and antigen tests are accepted.
  • Travelers from India before reaching Switzerland fall subject to the requirement of self-isolation imposed by Swiss authorities. Vaccinated travelers are not exempt from the measure, as per the reports.
  • All travelers are obliged to quarantine at their home or another suitable place of accommodation as soon as they enter the country. They should also report their entry to the responsible cantonal authority within two days.
  • If the traveler takes a PCR or antigen rapid test on the seventh day of their isolation and the result is negative, the isolation can be terminated.
  • Please note that travelers that are caught violating their quarantine obligation can be punished with a fine of up to CHF 10,000.

However, several categories of people are exempt from the quarantine and testing requirement including:

  • Business travellers who are entering Switzerland for a business reason, which cannot be postponed
  • Individuals travelling for an important medical reason that cannot be postponed
  • Transit passengers who have been in a state or area with an increased risk of infection for less than 24 hours
  • Transit passengers, who will only pass through the country to reach their destination