May 11, 2022

India Travel Guidelines: India revises rules for international travellers; introduced a strict quarantine policy due to the omicron variant

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) has revised guidelines for international arrivals to India. According to reports, these will come into force from 11 January 2022. Under the rules, passengers coming from/transiting ‘at risk’ countries will now have to undergo ‘strict isolation’ if they test positive for the virus. ‘arrival.

The move comes following an increase in cases of the new variant, Omicron, in the country. People in transit or coming from countries classified as “at risk” will need to be told by airlines that they will need to undergo post-arrival testing at Indian airports and quarantine as per protocol. Also note that international passengers will not be allowed to leave the airport until after the test results.

Additionally, all international travelers to India will need to register on
Air Suvidha portal, and self-declare all their travel details; upload the negative COVID-19 report that was obtained within 72 hours; declare its authenticity; and submit an undertaking that they would respect the competent authority’s decision to submit to quarantine in accordance with the revised guidelines.

International travelers are also required to pre-book their tests upon arrival at Indian airports in advance.

Omicron update: India revises rules for international travellers;  introduced a strict quarantine policy

Here are the guidelines for travelers arriving from at-risk countries:

  • Submit a sample for COVID-19 testing after arriving at the airport, which would be self-paid.
  • They will need to wait for their test results at the airport before leaving or catching a connecting flight.
  • If their test results are negative, they will undergo a 7-day home quarantine and must again undertake the RT-PCR test on the 8th day of arrival in India.
  • Travelers will also be required to upload the results of a repeat RT-PCR test for COVID-19 performed on Day 8 from the Air Suvidha portal, which will be monitored by the respective States/UTs.
  • If their test result is negative again, they will need to continue monitoring their health for the next 7 days.
  • But if they test positive, their samples will be sent for genomic testing to the INSACOG network of labs.
  • Those who test positive will be managed in an isolation facility and treated according to established standard protocol, including contact tracing.
  • Those who came into contact with such a positive case, would be asked to undergo home quarantine, which will be strictly monitored by the relevant state government.

Here are the guidelines on international travel to India for travelers arriving from non-“at risk” countries:

  • About 2% of the total passengers on the flight will undergo post-arrival testing, which will be carried out randomly at the airport upon arrival.
  • They will be identified by the airlines concerned.
  • Laboratories will prioritize testing of samples from these travellers.
  • All incoming passengers, as well as the 2% who test negative, will be required to undergo home quarantine for 7 days and undergo RT-PCR test on the 8th day of arrival in India.
  • They will then need to upload the results of the repeat RT-PCR test for Covid-19 performed on the 8th day to the Air Suvidha portal, which will be monitored by the respective States/UTs.
  • If the result is negative, they will be required to self-monitor their health for the next 7 days.
  • However, if they test positive, their samples should be sent for genomic testing to the INSACOG laboratory network.
  • They will then be managed in an isolation facility and treated according to standard protocol, including contact tracing.