Greece Tightens Entry Requirements: Negative Covid-19 Tests Required From Select Arrivals

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Greece tried to save its summer tourists season by opening its borders to the entire EU/EEA + UK and select third countries but is now battling the second wave of Covid-19 infections.

Visitors arriving in Greece from Sweden, Belgium, Spain, the Netherlands, and the Czech Republic will need to provide a negative Covid-19 test performed no more than 72 hours before arrival, according to Reuters. This requirement also applies at all land borders, including Greek citizens, and is effective from August 17, 2020.

New Zealand Stays Closed Into 2022?

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There was news coming out of New Zealand today where the local media was reporting that the country’s external border may stay closed for an extended period of up to two years.

New Zealand

Australia and New Zealand were talking about a trans-Tasman travel bubble late spring (northern – fall in the southern hemisphere) that would also include the Pacific Islands with close ties to both countries. This plan has now been scrapped due to an increasing number of infections in Australia.

Travelex Falls Into Administration

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Travelex, the infamous foreign exchange company whose branches you usually see at airports, fell into administration on Thursday with a prepacked deal with its noteholders.

The company is, in essence, split in two, and a special purpose vehicle takes over the viable parts while the rest, such as most of the UK retail locations have stopped trading.

Finland Reintroduces Internal Border Control With Andorra, Belgium & Netherlands Effective August 10, 2020

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Finland’s cabinet made a decision today to further restrict the intra-Schengen travel to Finland due to rising Covid-19 infection rates in Andorra, Belgium, and the Netherlands.

The government relaxed internal border control with several countries at the beginning of July, but Austria, Slovenia, and Switzerland were already put back on the non-free travel list back in July.

Japan Likely To Stay Closed For Foreign Tourism Arrivals Until Sometime In 2021

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Japan, with rising Covid-19 infection rates, has drafted a list of 12 countries with whom it could open up travel opportunities.

I don’t believe that this plan will be going anywhere anytime soon because the government is only now letting non-citizen residents back in who were overseas at the time the entry bans were instituted in March. There have been talks that Japan could allow some foreign student arrivals.

Brazil Is Open For International Visitor Arrivals!

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Brazil made a surprise decision and opened its borders for international visitors effective this Thursday (July 30, 2020) despite the continuous increase in daily Covid-19 infections and a high number of deaths.

The country has soon had 100,000 deaths from the coronavirus, and many more millions infected.

PPE Vending Machines At Airports & Transit Hubs?

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As many airports and airlines now required passengers to be masked up at all points, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that there is a new life for vending machine owners who stock them up with PPEs.

A friend of mine was traveling in Canada this past weekend and sent me a photo of a vending machine that was in a hall when arriving at the airport, and I asked him to check the prices too that you can find below.

Dubai Government & Dubai Airports Require Negative Covid-19 Test From All Passenger To/From/Transiting Effective August 1, 2020 (All Airlines)

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Dubai and Dubai Airports (DXB & DWC) will require all passengers arriving and transiting through Dubai to have a negative Covid-19 test administered within 96 hours of departure effective August 1, 2020.

Passengers departing from Dubai to the European Union and the United Kingdom are required to have a negative Covid-19 certificate. Passengers from select destinations may need to complete another PCR Covid-19 test upon arriving at DXB.

Indonesia Now Only Accepts Credit & Debits Cards With PIN (Signature Not An Option)

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Bank of Indonesia made a change in how merchants can accept credit and debit cards in the country effective beginning of this month (hasn’t affected tourists yet because the country is closed for foreign arrivals until September – read more here).

Merchants can no longer accept cards with signature. Local cards come with a six-digit PIN, but international cards with four or five-digit PINs are also acceptable. Not sure how this affects contactless payments such as Apple Pay or tapping a credit card?

UK Reintroduces 14-Day Quarantine For Arrivals From Spain Effective July 26, 2020

The UK kept its borders open for arrivals from most countries without any quarantine requirements until June (read more here) while other countries introduced restrictions already in March.

The UK then briefly introduced mandatory 14-day quarantine for all arrivals (for the show) and shortly after came up with safe/non-safe countries list (read more here) that was valid from July 10. The government unexpectedly announced late Saturday that all arrivals from Spain must quarantine for 14-days from Sunday.

France Institutes Mandatory Covid-19 Testing For Arrivals From 16 Countries Including US

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France on Friday announced that it would require incoming passengers from 16 countries to go through mandatory Covid-19 testing at the airport.

Air France A319

France does not allow non-EU/EEA citizen or permanent resident arrivals. This new testing requirement is in addition to fulfilling the current restrictions in place.

Hong Kong Extends Mandatory 14-Day Arrivals Quarantine Through The End Of 2020

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Hong Kong, which has seen its highest Covid-19 infection rates this week, on Wednesday extended the mandatory 14-day quarantine for all eligible arrivals by three months through December 31, 2020.

Most airlines decided to cancel their services to Hong Kong after the local government started to require Covid-19 tests from the incoming crew members delaying rest periods and potentially canceling flights if even one had been infected.

Finland Bans Visitors From Algeria, Australia, Austria, Slovenia & Switzerland Effective July 27, 2020

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Finland, which relaxed arrival restrictions from select countries earlier this month, is banning non-citizen or resident arrivals from Algeria, Australia, Austria, Slovenia, and Switzerland effective July 27, 2020.

Rovaniemi

The Covid-19 infection rates in these countries are higher than 8 infections per 100,000 residents over the rolling 14-days that Finland uses as its benchmark.

Ireland Releases Green List Countries From Where 14-Night Quarantine Not Required (UK Not Included)

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The Irish Government has decided what countries are included on its Green List from which incoming passengers are not required to quarantine for 14-days upon arriving in the country.

Ireland is part of the European Union, unlike the United Kingdom, with which the country has a common travel area. It is not, however, part of Europe’s passport-free Schengen-area.

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