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Wednesday 23 March 2022

Asian nations rapidly reopening their doors

Asia is opening its doors to vaccinated travellers with good news this week for anyone wanting to visit Hong Kong, South Korea or Malaysia. 

Hong Kong will lift its flight ban on nine countries next week, signalling a major switch from its ‘zero Covid’ policy, Business Traveller reports.

Fully vaccinated Hong Kong residents from the UK, Australia, Canada, France, India, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines and the US will be allowed to board flights to Hong Kong from April 1 provided that they have proof of a negative PCR test.

Travellers will still need to quarantine in a hotel upon arrival in Hong Kong, but this will be cut to seven days from 14.

The city’s leader Carrie Lam announced the news at a press conference, saying the flight ban was causing distress to Hong Kong people stranded overseas and is also having an impact on the city’s businesses.

She also announced that restrictions on social gatherings, mask-wearing and business and venue operations will begin to ease in three phases from April 20.

Malaysia and South Korea plan to reopen to fully vaccinated travellers from April 1 and those two countries will not require quarantine upon entry.

Visitors to Malaysia will have to take a pre-departure PCR test and antigen test upon arrival, while travellers to South Korea who have received two doses of the vaccine, or a booster jab, will be free from quarantine requirements from April 1. 

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