The National Ministry of Health has approved a unified sanitary protocol for the operation of both air and land transportation. It has been raised to authorities at the Presidential Cabinet Office for their final decision to initiate operations, first of domestic flights and followed by international flights. The Government´s decision will still be tied to the health situation.
There has been an official extension of the restriction measures until October 11, 2020.
Preventive isolation measures apply for: City of Buenos Aires and Greater Buenos Aires, Atlantic coast of the Province of Buenos Aires, city of La Rioja, and some departments of the provinces of Salta, Rio Negro, Santa Cruz, Santiago del Estero and Tierra del Fuego.
Preventive social distancing measures apply for the remaining districts of the country.
The city of Buenos Aires and Greater Buenos Aires, which have been the areas most affected by the pandemic, show declining numbers which invite some optimism. However, the same is not the case in the interior of the country, where some provinces register significant increases in cases. Provincial governments have the power to order preventive isolation for up to 14 days for those who enter their provinces, in the case of detecting risks for the spread of the virus.
What will happen to flights?
Despite multiple expressions from different government ministers who planned to resume regular flights for October 1, the National Civil Aviation Administration (ANAC) sent a formal communication to the airlines notifying that services will continue to be suspended until October 12, forcing companies to postpone their schedules again.
Aerolineas Argentinas as well as JetSmart and Flybondi have rescheduled their domestic flight services as of October 12, in line with the notification received.
Speaking of Domestic flights, may we remind you that carriers that will be operating in Argentina, so far are: Aerolíneas Argentinas, JetSmart (Chilean low cost with a good spread of routes) and minor airlines such as Andes (operating only certain destinations) and Flybondi, which is the Argentinean low cost. They have a very basic operation.
LATAM (LAN) Has cancelled the Domestic operation in Argentina, so far.
JetSmart might be operating out of AEP and another alternative smaller airport El Palomar; the latter is yet to be confirmed.
AEP (Domestic airport in Buenos Aires) will be closed through November for improvements, so the operation will be moved to EZE (Ezeiza International airport).
The Bolivian government determined that as of September 1st., the country will enter a post-confinement phase, and gradually the quarantine restrictions that were implemented to stop the spread of COVID-19 will be eased.
Commercial flights are enabled with countries with open skies policy for Bolivian citizens and foreign residents to return to the country. No quarantine upon arrival required. Passengers must present a valid certification of a negative COVID-19 test result. Flights from/to the US, Spain, Brazil and Uruguay are initially considered and it is expected that flights to/from Colombia, Argentina and Chile should follow, after their respective open skies policy. All land, river and lake borders remain closed while bilateral agreements are revised with neighboring countries.
Another positive change in this new phase is the authorization of the free transit of Bolivians or foreigners and the authorization of commercial activities in border municipalities after the previous coordination with neighboring countries.
Social distancing and the use of masks in public places remains compulsory. Large public events remain suspended. Commercial activities, such as markets, shops and food delivery will be permitted.
Our operator ready to receive the first visitors to Bolivia, having already been approved by the WTTC and having their bio-safety protocols’ manual ready. They estimate that mid-November will be the take-off date to re-start all their operations.
The Government will be authorizing International Airlines arriving to Bolivia. As soon as we have the IATA and Airlines Association (ALA) statement, we will update immediately.
Brazil opened it’s borders to all tourists on July 30, 2020. Airports throughout the country will be following health and safety protocols outlined by the World Health Organization.
- While Brazil has opened its border to visitors traveling by air, U.S. citizens considering international travel should be aware that foreign travelers entering Brazil by air, for a short stay of up to 90 days, must present proof of purchase of health insurance, in English or Portuguese, that is valid in Brazil for the entire period of the trip with minimum coverage of 30,000 Brazilian reais to an airline agent prior to boarding. Failure to provide this could result in the denial of entry by Brazilian authorities.
Please note that while the Brazilian government is requiring proof of health insurance in order to enter the country, Brazilian private hospitals do not often accept foreign health insurance and visitors to Brazil should expect to pay for private hospital services upfront and seek reimbursement from their travel insurance after treatment has finished.
- Is a negative COVID-19 test (PCR and/or serology) required for entry? NO
- Are health screening procedures in place at airports and other ports of entry? YES
- Information regarding visa extensions for residents and/or tourists:
- Is a curfew in place? NO
- There is no national curfew in place. However some local jurisdictions have and may enact movement restrictions. U.S. citizens should adhere to local laws and regulations at all times, including COVID-19 related restriction orders.
- Are there restrictions on intercity or interstate travel? NO
- Are U.S. citizens required to quarantine? NO
- The Brazilian government recommends those experiencing COVID-19 symptoms to self-quarantine for 15 days.
The domestic airlines such as Gol , Latam and Azul have not yet completely re- established their flight schedule frequency , but each week the amount is increasing .. the domestic air market has an expectation to be having all the flights back by October. But at the moment aprox 50 % is already back. Some destinations are still waiting the return of flights, such as Tefé and Alta Floresta .
In Rio, Sugar Loaf, The Christ Statue at Corcovado Mountain, AquaRio (Rio's aquarium) and Rio Star observation wheel, will return to operation after five months closed due to the pandemic starting from Saturday 15th August 2020. All touristic attractions are adopting high standards of safety measure and protocols to ensure a safe operation.
Elsewhere in the country, lodges in the Amazon and Pantanal have opened, as well as facilities elsewhere – all following safety protocols mandated by the government. The Brazil side of Iguassu Falls is open, but visitors can’t cross the border to visit the Argentine side of the falls yet.
The nationwide curfew remains active from 10pm to 5am, but areas of the country, such as Santiago-Valparaiso regions are moving to the next stage of the recovery process, which lifts the quarantine for weekdays.
Currently national borders will remain closed until Sept. 16.
Restaurants, land transportation and domestic flights are opening up. September 1 begins the reopening of almost all economic sectors, however there are certain restrictions, for example hotels can open until September 15 meeting all bio-security requirements. For September only approved flights for 14 routes from Bogota.
As in all other countries, these re-openings are of course subject to strict bio-security guidelines, such as the wearing of face masks, minimum distance, limited number of visitors/participants, limited occupancy of public transportation, etc.
Here are the currently most important key points for relaunching tourist activities in Colombia:
- Hotels: After implementing all necessary measures regarding biosecurity protocols and having those checked by the responsible authorities, various hotels are now receiving guests again.
- National Air Traffic:
On the following routes, flights will be available again from September 01st (current status):
Bogotá - Cali – Bogotá
Bogotá - Cartagena – Bogotá
Bogotá - Barranquilla – Bogotá
Bogotá - Pereira – Bogotá
Bogotá - Santa Marta - Bogotá (as of September 07th)
Bogotá - Bucaramanga – Bogotá
Bogotá - Cúcuta – Bogotá
Bogotá - Montería – Bogotá
Bogotá - San Andrés – Bogotá
Bogotá - Medellín – Bogotá
Bogotá - Villavicencio – Bogotá
Bogotá - Pasto – Bogotá
Bogotá - Leticia – Bogotá
Medellín - Barranquilla – Medellín
Medellín - Cali – Medellín
Medellín - San Andrés - Medellín
Flights to La Macarena are not yet enabled. The national parks have not yet announced their openings. Caño Cristales as a national park is still closed. For them everything is still uncertain and complex. Their operation depends on official government permission to open, and to this day there is no authorization for either commercial flights or visits to the Caño Cristales Park.
Colombia is advancing on its strategy for reactivating international tourism. The Colombian Government announced the reopening of the international air connectivity with the inauguration of the first two flights on September 19th from Cartagena with the arrival of the airline Spirit coming from Fort Lauderdale, and the departure of the Colombian airline Viva Air to Miami. In addition, as of September 21st, flights will be restored from Mexico and the Dominican Republic among other countries.
As part of the first reactivation phase, the Colombian international airports that will restart its operations gradually in addition to the Rafael Núñez in Cartagena, will be Alfonso Bonilla Aragón in Cali, José María Córdova in Rionegro (which serves Medellín) and El Dorado in Bogotá.
Biosafety protocols for international flights to Colombia
Travellers arriving to Colombia must present a negative result of a PCR test for Covid-19 taken no longer than 96 hours before the stipulated time of travel and whoever has symptoms associated with Covid-19 will not be allowed to get on board.
In order to make easier the immigration process, passengers must fill the online form CheckMig (www.migracioncolombia.gov.co) between 1 and 24 hours prior to flight departure and should wear a face mask in airplanes and airports. Within Colombian air terminals, the minimum distance of 2 meters must be respected; on the arrival of a flight, the use of conveyor belts will be maximized; and the access to the airport terminal must be done 3 hours before the international flight.
Some measures on airplanes are: on short flights, toilets should not be used; if the flight is less than two hours, the cabin crew will not perform service on board; on medium and long flights (more than 2 hours) it is recommended to have available several face masks and replace them throughout the flight; and passengers must remain in their assigned seat at all times.
For return flights Covid test depends on the regulation for each country. In the case of the USA this is not a requirement therefore no test is required to return to the USA.
NEW ENTRY PROTOCOLS to visit ECUADOR, approved by the National Government and valid as of Aug. 15, 2020:
Entry requirements to Ecuador Mainland:
- Original passport (valid for at least 6 months).
- Medical and travel insurance (both are expected to become mandatory for the mainland. They are mandatory to go to the Galapagos).
- Negative PCR test result, carried out in your country of origin, up to 10 days before your arrival in Ecuador and without presenting symptoms.
- Present a voucher or invoice that proves that they are entering Ecuador with previously contracted tourist services.
- Present the completed Traveler's Health Card.
- Submit the completed Special Immigration Form.
TRAVELER’S HEALTH CARD
Passengers must fill out and sign, prior to disembarking, the “Traveler’s Health Record,” which will be delivered by the personnel of the Ministry of Public Health.
SPECIAL MIGRATORY FORM
Passengers must sign a letter of commitment (Special Immigration Form), which states that they agree and comply with the general government provisions regarding the mandatory preventative COVID19 quarantine.
Passengers must present their negative PCR test result, performed up to 10 days before the trip. * In the case that a traveler is presenting symptoms of COVID-19 when entering the country, the Ministry of Public Health will activate the established protocols.
COMPLIANCE WITH THE MANDATORY PREVENTIVE QUARANTINE (APO)
Passengers who do not have a negative PCR test and/or symptoms related to COVID-19 must comply with the APO for a period of 10 days and 9 nights or until they receive a negative test result from a new PCR test. In the case that the passenger continues to show symptoms on the 10th day, they will have to extend their stay for 3 more days. Passengers who enter the country without a PCR test will immediately begin their APO in an authorized accommodation and a PCR test will be performed by a laboratory that has been approved by the Ministry of Public Health, and will comply with the APO until a negative test result is delivered.
All costs involved in complying with the APO (PCR test performed at the Ecuador airport, transportation, accommodation, food, etc.) will be the responsibility of the passengers.
In case of violation of the APO or providing false information in the "Traveler's File," passengers will be subject to administrative, civil, and criminal sanctions, established in conjunction with the current regulations.
Passengers must keep their travel agent or local operator informed about any conditions and news that may arise upon arrival in the country.
Protocols will be constantly evaluated and may be modified according to the evolution of the health situation in Ecuador.
Before starting the trip to the Galapagos province, national or foreign tourists must have:
- Travelers must present their negative PCR test (physical document) up to 96 hours (4 days) before entering the Galapagos Islands.
- In the event that the PCR test, from the travelers’ country of origin, has passed the date of validity, the passenger must perform a new PCR test. In this case, the passenger must stay in a hotel, either located in Quito or Guayaquil, until they receive the new test result*. We suggest a stay of 3 days and 2 nights in either of the cities mentioned above before planning to fly to the islands
- *If the test result is positive, the passenger will have to quarantine for 10 days and 9 nights in continental Ecuador.
- In the case that the passenger continues to show symptoms on the 10th day, they will have to extend their stay for 3 more days.
- Flight tickets (roundtrip) to the islands
- Passengers must carry their "Health Declaration" form that they filled out upon entering the country.
- Passengers must present a voucher or invoice that proves that they entered Galapagos with contracted tourist services.
- Passengers must have the safe-passage document approved by the Ministry of Tourism, which has been issued by the service operator in Galapagos.
- Transit Control Card issued by operator.
- Galapagos National Park entrance fee must be prepaid operator.
- must have travel and medical insyrance
PROCESS FOR PASSENGERS DEPARTING TO GALAPAGOS FROM QUITO OR GUAYAQUIL AIRPORTS
When disembarking from the aircraft, passengers must cross through the different disinfection points within the airport.
The Ministry of Public Health will take passengers’ temperature before entering the airport. If the passenger has a fever at the airport, isolation protocol will be activated and they will not be able to enter the islands until they are reviewed by a doctor and their entry is approved.
Passengers will pass through immigration control.
Passengers must collect their luggage at the airport.
- Masks are mandatory.
- Passengers should avoid wearing metal and packing objects that are not allowed in carry-on luggage.
- It is recommended that passengers avoid heavy carry-on luggage. Allowed weight is 5 kg (11 lbs). (subject to change)
- Passengers should have all documents, indicated in the "Requirements for the entry of passengers" section, with them.
- Passengers must comply with the physical distance at all times: at least 2 meters (6 feet).
Important: Passengers must abide by the regulations of the Galapagos National Park, the Galapagos Government Council, the Ministry of Health of Ecuador, and the Airports.
The Cheddi Jagan International Airport at Timehri and the Eugene F. Correia International Airport at Ogle was closed for international flights as of March 18, 2020, at midnight. The Guyana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) created its phased opening approach of the airports based on the overall approach taken by the National Task Force. Thus their international airports will follow the below reopening dates:
- Phase 1 – currently: Ongoing repatriation flights.
- Phase 2 – September 1: Limited incoming commercial flights for Guyanese citizens, permanent residents, international workers and diplomats.
- Phase 3 – September 30: Limited incoming commercial flights and open to foreign nationals. More international carriers are keen to enter the market at this time due to the combination of foreign and local nationals.
- Phase 4 – October: Expansion of flights.
The government and the tourist sector has implemented new safety protocols recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC). Although Peru’s international borders remain closed, nationwide air and land transport restarted on July 15th; with the exception of the departments of Arequipa, Ica, Junín, Huánuco, San Martín, Madre de Dios and Ancash.
The Government of Peru announced the resumption of international flights to the country as of October 1st. The conditions for the entry of passengers are still being outlined, but the following was reported:
-The passengers will be required to have a molecular test certificate no older than one week that ensures that they are not carriers of COVID-19.
-Health protocols are being specified and must be implemented by the airlines.
-The number of flights will be determined by demand and, in other cases, established by the Government for health control issues.
These conditions may vary and will be confirmed during the following weeks. We will keep you informed about the following government announcements in this regard.