COVID-19 cases are declining globally and the Indian authorities have announced the lifting of mandatory pre-departure testing requirements for all passengers arriving from China, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Korea, Thailand and Japan. Although random testing at airports continues.
On January 1, 2023, India reinstated a number of rules and required all passengers from a number of countries to provide negative coronavirus tests taken before travel.
Passengers from China, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Korea, Thailand and Japan were required to upload test results to the Government of India website prior to departure — Air Suvidha portal. The system accepted tests made up to 72 hours ago.
As the global situation calmed down and the number of cases in the region decreased significantly, India took a decisive step: from 11:00 on February 13, it completely canceled the manipulation of preliminary tests.
In accordance with the updated “Guidelines for International Arrivals”, “the Ministry is waiving the existing requirements for testing for COVID-19 before departure and uploading a declaration of health on the Air Suvidha portal of the Ministry of Civil Aviation for international travelers arriving from China, Singapore, Hong Kong , the Republic of Korea, Thailand and Japan».
It is interesting that all passengers whose flights arrived before 11:00 on February 13 were forced to submit the results of preliminary testing on the state portal.
And such flights there were several. For example, Air India A1 347 from Singapore to Chennai arriving at 10:40, Cathay Pacific flight CX 679 from Hong Kong to Delhi arriving at 00:25 at night, etc.
However, passengers were advised in advance not to risk and not to hope that “the flight is a little delayed”; and testing requirements can be avoided.
And one more thing. Not all restrictions lifted: India has not waived mandatory random testing of at least 2% of all passengers aged 12 and over arriving in the country, regardless of their origin.
Nevertheless, India got rid of the main restrictions and made travel much cheaper and less tiring for tourists.