Hong Kong reopens to foreigners after two-year COVID-19 closure

Hong Kong reopened to non-residents starting Sunday, as it has tamped down its COVID-19 cases.
That’s the first time in two years that travelers have been allowed to enter the financial hub since the pandemic outbreak.
The relaxed measure was welcomed by travelers.
“It’s great actually. At least they’re trying to open the road. I guess it’s a good thing,” said a traveler.
Under the new rules, travelers who enter the city must be fully vaccinated. They must also produce a negative PCR test result before boarding and get tested again upon arrival. Then they will head to designated quarantine hotels for at least seven days.
Hong Kong also eased rules on suspending flights carrying infected people.
The threshold for this suspension is raised from three infected people per flight to five people, or 5 percent of passengers, whichever is higher, while the suspension duration is cut from seven days to five.
The easing measures will likely serve as a lifeline for the gloomy tourism.
According to the Hong Kong Tourism Board, the city received 91,000 visitors last year, a 97.4 percent drop year on year.
The Travel Industry Council says the reopening is a good start but hopes more can be done.
“The trouble is because of the quarantine requirements, it is still quite difficult to really have a significant growth on the traffic. So I think it’s good, but definitely, it won’t really bring a significant increase on business for us. We suggest the government to consider uplifting the circuit breaker measure so that there’s no more flight suspension, so the airlines can operate more flights and then also more capacity,” said Fanny Yeung, executive director of the council.
Yeung also recommended lifting mandatory quarantine requirements for travelers and setting a proper timetable for the city’s borders to open without restrictions.
She expected the travel industry to pick up in the fourth quarter and hoped that by next year, it will bloom.The post Hong Kong reopens to foreigners after two-year COVID-19 closure first appeared on Ariana News.

Source: Ariana News

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