A Comprehensive Analysis of Last Month’s Changes to Visa-Free Travel Across the Globe.
|Albania||El Salvador||Lesotho||Schengen Area|
|Antigua & Barbuda||European Union||Libya||Serbia|
|Barbados||Grenada||Marshall Islands||South Sudan|
|Belarus||Guatemala||Mauritania||St Kitts and Nevis|
|Bosnia & Herzegovina||Guyana||Mozambique||Tanzania|
|Bulgaria||Iceland||New Zealand||Trinidad & Tobago|
|Costa Rica||Italy||Panama||United Arab Emirates|
|Cote d’Ivoire||Jamaica||Papua New Guinea||United Kingdom|
|Democratic Republic of the Congo||Kazakhstan||Philippines||Vanuatu|
Please note that due to the unexpected magnitude of the Covid-19 outbreak, countries across the world have implemented unprecedented travel restrictions. Many countries have implemented entry restrictions on individuals of any nationality who have recently been in, or transited through, countries deemed most affected by the outbreak. The countries taking such an approach include: Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Armenia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Botswana, Brunei, Central African Republic, China, Comoros, Fiji, Gabon, Japan, Kiribati, Macau, the Maldives, Mongolia, Nauru, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Somalia, South Africa, South Korea, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Turkey, and the United States.
Named relevant countries: Albania, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Estonia, European Union, Greece, Hong Kong, Iceland, Italy, Kosovo, Liechtenstein, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Norway, Romania, Russia, Schengen Area, Serbia, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom.
On 5 May, the press service of the President of Ukraine reported on an interview given by the Deputy Head of the Presidential Office, Ihor Zhovka. In the interview, Zhovka announced that the Covid-19 pandemic would not affect Ukraine’s visa-free regime with the European Union.
On 13 May, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine partially suspended a visa-free travel agreement for Ukrainian citizens to Belarus, which previously enabled Ukrainian citizens to cross the border using a national ID card only. The changes, set to become effective on 1 September 2020, are related only to Ukrainians leaving Ukraine to enter Belarus. National IDs can still be used for Ukrainians who enter Belarus (i.e. there is no requirement to show a passport at the Belarusian border).
On 6 May, a law amending the Aliens Act entered into effect in Estonia, requiring third country nationals entering Estonia on either a long-term visa or with visa-free stay for the purpose of employment to leave the country if they are unable to find work.
On 6 May, European Union and Western Balkan leaders took part in a virtual summit to discuss the region’s future in light of Covid-19. Speaking before the summit, the Ambassador of Kosovo to the European Union, Bernard Nikaj, expressed his hope to achieve visa-free travel to the European Union for Kosovan citizens.
On 24 May, the Foreign Minister of Turkey, Mevlut Cavusoglu, gave an interview on Alanya DIM TV about Turkish foreign policy. During the interview, Cavusoglu warned the European Union that a new refugee flow is likely to take place post-Covid-19 if the European Union does not meet Turkey’s demands for visa liberalisation.
On 28 May, in an interview reported by the BBC, the Foreign Minister of the United Kingdom, Dominic Raab, said Britain will increase the period of visa-free travel afforded to British national overseas (BNO) passport holders from Hong Kong to 12 months if China fails to suspend its proposed security laws. Currently BNO passport holders from Hong Kong benefit from visa-free access to the United Kingdom for six months.
On 4 May, the Government of Kosovo eased some of the country’s movement restrictions. However, land borders remain closed to all foreign nationals and all inbound international flights remain suspended. The entry ban affects citizens of 110 visa-exempt countries and territories.
On 8 May, the European Commission invited the EU+ area, including all Schengen Area Member States (plus Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, and Romania) and the four Schengen Associated States (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland) to extend external border controls on the entry of third country nationals until 15 June 2020.
On 15 May, the Cabinet of Ministers of Italy approved a decree that will lift travel restrictions to and from Italy starting on 3 June 2020. On 16 May, the Italian Government clarified that the measures will be limited to residents of the Schengen Area.
On 15 May, an Order of the Government of Russia entered into force allowing the entry of foreign citizens who are highly qualified specialists in the field of physical education and sports, provided that these persons present a valid identity document and a valid employment contract with a sports organisation or Russian sports federation. The easing of requirements for physical education and sports specialists comes shortly after Russia extended its ban on the entry of foreign citizens for an indefinite period.
On 19 May, the Government of Serbia announced that individuals arriving from Bulgaria and Greece may enter the country without undergoing a mandatory quarantine period, provided they are entering for business, family, or humanitarian purposes. Authorities also announced that individuals from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, and North Macedonia will be permitted to enter the country from 1 June 2020.
On 20 May, authorities in Ukraine announced the extension of the country’s Covid-19 restrictions until 22 June 2020. Under the restrictions, non-resident foreign nationals are prohibited from entering the country. The entry ban affects citizens of 72 visa-exempt countries.
On 25 May, the Government of Montenegro announced the opening of the country’s borders to countries with fewer than 25 active Covid-19 cases per 100,000 residents on 1 June 2020. A list of eligible countries will be published at least once a week by the Public Health Institute.
Named relevant countries: Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Kosovo, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, Trinidad and Tobago.
On 14 May, it was reported that H.E. Anton Edmunds, Ambassador of St Lucia to the United States and H.E. Vlora Citaku, Ambassador of Kosovo to the United States, signed a visa waiver agreement for holders of diplomatic and official passports, almost nine years after the countries established diplomatic relations.
On 12 May, Grenada eased some of its Covid-19 restrictions. Despite the relaxation of certain measures, Grenada’s airports remain closed to all inbound commercial passenger flights and seaports also remain closed. The travel restrictions affect citizens of 104 countries with visa-free access to Grenada.
On 13 May, following a Cabinet meeting, the Antigua and Barbuda Government issued a statement stating that the country’s VC Bird International Airport will re-open to commercial traffic on 1 June 2020. Individuals entering the country will be subject to strict health protocols to avoid a second wave of Covid-19 infections. The re-opening affects citizens of 106 visa-exempt countries.
On 13 May, Jamaica enforced new curfew measures and extended the closure of the country’s borders through 31 May 2020, with all airports and seaports remaining closed to non-residents. The travel restrictions affect citizens of 106 visa-exempt countries and territories.
On 15 May, the Bahamas Civil Aviation Authority released a statement confirming that only citizens, residents, and homeowners in the Bahamas are eligible to enter the country, subject to the presentation of a negative Covid-19 test and mandatory quarantine. The entry restrictions affect citizens of 120 visa-exempt countries and territories.
On 15 May, the Government of the Dominican Republic announced an extension to the country’s state of emergency until 1 June 2020. Under the state of emergency, all inbound passenger air and maritime transport remains suspended. Reports indicate that airports will not reopen until at least 5 July 2020. Before the travel restrictions, nationals of 108 countries and territories were able to visit the country for 90 days without a visa.
On 16 May, Prime Minister Alan Chastanet of St Lucia announced that St Lucia’s international borders would open on 4 June 2020. The re-opening of St Lucia’s airspace, if achieved as per the announced schedule, would affect citizens of 160 visa-exempt or visa-on-arrival eligible countries.
On 20 May, Trinidad and Tobago extended the closure of all air and seaports to the arrival or departure of aircrafts or ships carrying passengers, unless permitted by the Minister with responsibility for national security.
On 21 May, St Kitts and Nevis extended the suspension of commercial flights to the country as borders remain closed to inbound travel. Prime Minister Timothy Harris stated that while the reopening of the dual-island nation to tourism was a “moving target,” the safety of Kittitian and Nevisian citizens “must come first”.
On 25 May, authorities in Dominica amended the country’s movement restrictions and a reduced curfew took effect. All commercial and private passenger flights at Douglas-Charles Airport remain suspended until further notice, however. As Dominica allows nationals of any country except the Dominican Republic to visit visa-free, the suspensions continue to be felt worldwide.
Named relevant countries: Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Costa Rica, Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Guyana, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, United States, Venezuela.
On 4 May, Guyana’s COVID-19 Emergency Measures (No. 3) entered into effect. Under the measures Guyana’s two largest airports will remain closed to all inbound international flights until 3 June 2020, with the exceptions including cargo and medical evacuation flights. The restrictions affect citizens of 55 jurisdictions who normally do not need a visa to visit Guyana.
On 4 May, President Alejandro Giammattei of Guatemala introduced further extensions to the country’s restrictive anti-Covid-19 measures. International movement restrictions, excluding cargo and emergency transit, remain in place and the entry ban on non-resident foreign nationals will continue until further notice. The restrictions affect citizens of 86 visa-exempt jurisdictions.
On 5 May, President Lenin Moreno of Ecuador announced the extension of the country’s state of emergency until 15 June 2020. Under the state of emergency, harsh international movement restrictions apply, including for citizens and residents of Ecuador. Previously, all but 25 countries were afforded visa-free or visa-on-arrival access to Ecuador.
On 11 May, Bolivia eased some of its Covid-19 restrictions. However, the country’s land borders remain closed to all non-resident foreign nationals and all international passenger flights remain suspended. Previously, citizens of 49 countries and territories were able to enter Bolivia without a visa for a stay of up to 90 days.
On 12 May, the national aeronautics institute (INAC) of Venezuela published a statement announcing the extension of the country’s suspension of domestic and international passenger flights until at least 12 June 2020. Repatriation, emergency, and humanitarian flights are exempt from the ban. The flight suspension affects citizens of 66 visa-exempt jurisdictions.
On 14 May, Belize gazetted its Belize Constitution (Emergency Powers) Regulations, 2020. The Regulations extend the closure of all ports of entry in Belize, with the exception of cargo, commercial courier, and emergency flights. Returning Belizean nationals must undergo mandatory quarantine. The closures affect citizens of 107 visa-exempt jurisdictions.
On 15 May, aviation authorities in Panama announced that international passenger flights to and from Panama will remain suspended until 22 June 2020. The flight suspensions affect citizens of 118 visa-exempt countries.
On 19 May, the Government of El Salvador extended lockdown measures in the country until 6 June 2020. Under the restrictive measures, ports of entry remain closed to all non-resident foreign nationals. Citizens of El Salvador, legal foreign residents, and diplomats entering the country will be health screened. The restrictions affect citizens from 86 visa-exempt jurisdictions.
On 20 May, the Government of Colombia announced the extension of the country’s ban on inbound and outbound international passenger flights until 31 August 2020. The closure of Colombia’s land borders and state of emergency has also been extended until 31 August 2020. The entry restrictions affect citizens of 99 visa-exempt jurisdictions.
On 21 May, the United States Secretary of Homeland Security extended the suspension of persons travelling to the United States from Canada through the land border shared between the two nations. The suspension is set to continue until 22 June 2020 and does not affect United States citizens, lawful permanent residents returning to the United States, or travel deemed ‘essential.’
On 22 May, officials in Brazil extended the entry ban by air, land, and maritime ports for all non-resident foreign nationals for a period of 30 days. Transiting foreign nationals are exempt provided they stay in the international area of the airport. The travel ban affects citizens of 100 visa-exempt countries.
On 22 May, President Martin Vizcarra of Peru announced the extension of the country’s state of emergency until 30 June 2020. Under the state of emergency, Peru’s borders remain closed and inbound and outbound passenger flights remain suspended. Exceptions exist for countries with whom Peru has agreements to allow the repatriation of citizens. The border closures affect citizens of 97 visa-exempt jurisdictions.
On 25 May, authorities in Paraguay entered into Phase 2 of Paraguay’s relaxation of Covid-19-related restrictions. Despite the easing of certain measures, however, the country’s international borders remain closed until further notice. The border closures affect citizens of 61 visa-exempt jurisdictions.
On 29 May, the Public Security Minister of Costa Rica, Michael Soto, announced the extension of the country’s border closures until 30 June 2020. The border closures do not apply to citizens and legal residents of Costa Rica. Exceptions are also being made for diplomatic staff and medical or humanitarian travel. The border closures affect citizens of 97 visa-exempt jurisdictions.
Named relevant countries: Bahrain, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Maldives, Nepal, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Samoa, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, United Arab Emirates.
On 20 May, authorities in Israel announced the extension of the country’s ban on foreign nationals until 15 June 2020. Airlines have been notified of the extension by the Israeli Airport Authority. Israeli nationals entering the country will be required to self-isolate for a 14-day period. The entry ban affects citizens of 99 visa exempt jurisdictions.
On 21 May, the Civil Aviation Authority of Iraq extended the suspension of inbound and outbound flights to the country until the end of the month. The flight suspension affects citizens of Bahrain, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and the United Arab Emirates who are normally eligible to obtain a visa-on-arrival at Al Nafaj International Airport and Basra International Airport.
On 21 May, the Information Ministry of Lebanon announced that the Government has no plans to reopen airports, despite reports indicating that Beirut-Rafic Hariri International Airport was set to open in early June. The closures affect citizens of 89 countries eligible for visa-free or visa-on-arrival access to Lebanon without conditions.
On 21 May, Emirates Airlines began operating multiple regular, non-repatriation flights from the United Arab Emirates to several locations, including Australia, Canada, Europe, and the United States. Only Emirati nationals and residents, however, remain able to enter the country and must receive approval beforehand. The entry restrictions affect citizens of 74 jurisdictions eligible for visa-free or visa-on-arrival access to the United Arab Emirates.
On 30 May, authorities in Pakistan announced the resumption of outbound international flights. However, inbound international flights remain suspended. The inbound flight suspension particularly affects citizens of the Maldives, Nepal, Samoa, Tonga, and Trinidad and Tobago who were previously eligible for visa-free access to Pakistan.
On 31 May, the General Authority of Civil Aviation of Saudi Arabia resumed the operation of domestic flights. However, it was confirmed that international flights remain suspended until further notice. The suspension affects citizens of 55 visa-exempt and visa-on-arrival eligible countries.
Named relevant countries: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Brunei, Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kazakhstan, Laos, Malaysia, Maldives, Nepal, Philippines, Seychelles, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, Uzbekistan, Vietnam.
On 3 May, the Government of the Philippines suspended all international and domestic flights indefinitely, with the exception of cargo, medical, utilities, and maintenance flights. Additionally, on 29 May 2020, the Department of Foreign Affairs of the Philippines confirmed on social media that the temporary suspension of all visas and visa-free privileges is still in effect until further notice. The suspensions affect citizens of 157 visa-exempt countries.
On 10 May, the Prime Minister of Malaysia announced that the country’s Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) will remain in effect until 9 June 2020. Under the CMCO, all foreign nationals are prohibited from entering Malaysia, subject to limited exceptions. Foreign nationals may transit through Malaysian airports but may not pass through Immigration. The restrictions affect citizens of 162 visa-exempt countries.
On 11 May, Kazakhstan lifted its state of emergency. Despite the relaxation of measures however, Kazakhstan’s borders remain closed to all but returning citizens, diplomats, and those invited by Government officials. The border closures affect citizens of 73 visa-exempt countries.
On 15 May, the Cabinet of Ministers of Azerbaijan issued a resolution easing many of the country’s restrictions from 18 May 2020. However, other preventative measures remain in effect until at least 31 May 2020, including the closure of land and air borders to all passenger traffic. The closure affects citizens of 11 visa-exempt countries.
On 15 May, authorities in Uzbekistan announced the extension of quarantine measures until 1 June 2020. While some domestic flights and trains resumed operation on 18 May, the country’s air and land borders remain closed to non-Uzbek nationals. The closure affects citizens of 86 countries who are ordinarily eligible for visa-free access to the country without conditions.
On 16 May, the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand announced an extension of the temporary ban on international passenger flights to Thailand until 30 June 2020. The ban does not apply to state or military aircrafts, emergency landings, humanitarian aid, repatriation, and cargo flights. The flight ban affects citizens of 64 visa-exempt countries, Covid-19 restrictions aside.
On 18 May, the Office of the Prime Minister of Laos issued a notice extending the closure of all international border checkpoints for the entry and exit of foreign nationals, with some exceptions. The issuance of visas remains suspended, as does entry for those eligible for visa-free and visa-on-arrival access to Laos. Previously, visa-free entry and visas-on-arrival were granted to citizens of all but 32 countries.
On 18 May, the Immigration Department of Vietnam announced automatic visa extensions would be applied until 30 June 2020 for foreign nationals who have been stranded in Vietnam since 1 March 2020. The extensions also apply to those with visa waivers. The entry of foreign nationals to Vietnam remains suspended, with exceptions for essential and skilled workers. Additionally, the country’s land borders with Cambodia and Laos remain closed. Covid-19 restrictions aside, the suspension affects passport holders from 24 visa-exempt countries, including Cambodia and Laos.
On 20 May, authorities in Cambodia lifted an entry ban for certain foreign nationals. Visa exemption policies remain suspended, however, and the country’s land borders with Laos, Thailand, and Vietnam remain closed. The suspension of visa exemptions affects citizens of Brunei, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, the Philippines, the Seychelles, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.
On 20 May, the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore announced that as of 2 June 2020, Changi Airport would re-open for transit purposes. Only citizens, permanent residents, and Long-Term Pass holders of Singapore, however, are eligible to enter or transit through the country. The restrictions affect citizens of all countries who normally benefit from visa-free entry to Singapore, with the exception of citizens of 35 countries included in Singapore’s ‘Assessment Level I’ and ‘Assessment Level II’ lists.
On 22 May, the Government of India allowed certain categories of OCI card holders stranded abroad to return to India, including minors, students, and those required to travel for emergencies. The visa-free travel facility granted to OCI card holders not currently present in India was suspended in April and was originally intended to remain in effect until the prohibition on international air travel of passengers to India was lifted by the Government. On 30 May, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation announced the extension of the country’s international flight ban until 30 June 2020.
On 25 May, Japan notified South Korea of its decision to extend entry restrictions for South Koreans and suspend the visa waiver programme afforded to them until the end of June. South Korea’s foreign ministry expressed regret over Japan’s decision to extend the restrictions, stating that “coronavirus infections have been stabilised” in the country.
On 30 May, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Armenia released a statement announcing the end of the temporary suspension of the country’s visa waiver with China. The Armenia–China visa waiver entered into effect in January 2020 but was suspended due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Armenian citizens will be able to travel to China without a visa from 1 June 2020, flight suspensions notwithstanding.
On 30 May, a notice issued on the website of Hong Kong International Airport confirmed that transit services will be resumed gradually from 1 June 2020. The entry ban on non-resident foreign nationals remains unchanged and is in effect until further notice. The entry ban affects citizens of 146 visa-exempt countries and territories.
On 30 May, the Government of Nepal announced the continuation of the suspension period of all international border and flight operations until 14 June 2020. Additionally, the provision of visas-on-arrival to all foreign nationals and Non-Resident Nepalese card holders remains suspended. Previously, Nepal issued visas-on-arrival to any foreign national with the exception of holders of refugee travel documents and nationals of 12 countries.
Named relevant countries: Algeria, Cote d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Djibouti, Egypt, Gambia, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Malaysia, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, South Sudan, Tanzania, Tunisia, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
On 1 May, President Addo Dankw Akufo-Addo of Ghana announced that the country’s international borders would remain closed to non-resident foreign nationals until the end of the month. Returning citizens and foreign residents remain subject to mandatory quarantine if they present virus-like symptoms. The border closures affect citizens of 28 visa-exempt countries.
On 1 May, the Prime Minister of Mauritius, Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, announced during a televised address that the country’s movement restrictions would be extended until 1 June 2020. The country’s borders remain closed and all passenger flights remain suspended. The Prime Minister stated that the reopening of Mauritius’ airspace would depend on both the local and global situation. The entry ban affects citizens of 180 countries who were previously able to obtain visa-free or visa-on-arrival access to Mauritius.
On 3 May, a Presidential Decree entered into effect in Senegal, extending the country’s state of emergency until 2 June 2020. The Decree gives authorities the power to regulate the movement of people and introduce entry bans. The country’s borders remain closed and all inbound and outbound flights remain suspended. The restrictions affect citizens of 59 visa-exempt countries. Citizens of all other countries, with the exception of four, were previously able to obtain a visa-on-arrival for stays of up to one month.
On 4 May, an Order of the Public Health Commissioner of the Seychelles entered into effect. Under the Order, all persons wishing to enter the Seychelles must acquire written authorisation from the Minister responsible for health, subject to conditions specified by the Minister. Additionally, any person who is not a citizen of the Seychelles who exits the Seychelles after 4 May 2020 will be unable to return for three months from the date of his or her exit. Prior to these Covid-19 restrictions, citizens of all but one country were able to travel to the Seychelles visa-free.
On 11 May, authorities in Zambia closed the country’s border with Tanzania at Nakonde until further notice. The closure, however, only affects people, as freight transport was resumed on 16 May 2020. Tanzanian citizens normally benefit from visa-free access to Zambia for periods of up to 30 days. Zambia also confirmed the suspension of all visa-on-arrival facilities.
On 12 May, the Civil Aviation Authority of Mozambique extended the country’s suspension of all international flights until 31 May 2020. The issuance of visas also remains suspended. Only citizens and foreign residents are permitted to return to the country but will have to undergo a mandatory period of self-quarantine. The restrictions affect citizens worldwide as Mozambique allows the universal entry to the country with a visa-on-arrival.
On 12 May, the South Sudan Civil Aviation Authority announced the reopening of the country’s airspace to all domestic and international flights. People arriving from abroad will be required to provide a certificate declaring them free of Covid-19 and will be required to undergo a period of quarantine. The reopening of South Sudan’s airspace is particularly welcome news to citizens of Tanzania, who benefit from visa-free access to the country.
On 15 May, the Government of Guinea announced the extension of the country’s state of emergency until 14 June 2020. Under the state of emergency, air, land, and maritime border closures remain in place. The border closures affect citizens of 19 visa-exempt countries.
On 15 May, aviation authorities in Namibia announced the continuation of its ban on air traffic until at least 30 June 2020. The country’s air, land, and maritime borders remain closed to foreigners except humanitarian and essential non-national workers. The border closures therefore continue to affect the citizens of 96 countries otherwise eligible for visa-free and visa-on-arrival access to Namibia.
On 16 May, authorities in Djibouti extended the restrictions implemented under the country’s initial lockdown period indefinitely. As a result, all air, land, and maritime borders remain closed. The closures particularly affect citizens of Singapore, who are normally eligible for visa-free travel to the country.
On 16 May, President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya announced the closure of the country’s border with Tanzania, with exceptions for freight traffic. Kenya’s border with Uganda remains closed and all inbound and outbound international flights remain suspended until 5 June 2020. The restrictions affect, in the first instance, citizens of 43 visa-exempt countries, including Tanzania and Uganda.
On 16 May, President Emmerson Mnangagwa of Zimbabwe issued a statement noting the indefinite extension of the country’s nationwide lockdown. Under the lockdown, all inbound and outbound commercial air travel and land borders to passenger traffic remain suspended. The travel restrictions do not apply to Zimbabweans and non-national permit holders.
On 18 May, authorities in Tanzania lifted restrictions on international flights and removed the mandatory 14-day quarantine period for arrivals into the country. Only those showing symptoms of Covid-19 will be placed in quarantine. The re-opening of Tanzania’s airspace immediately affects citizens of 47 visa-exempt countries.
On 19 May, Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly of Egypt announced the extension of the country’s international passenger flights until further notice. The flight suspension will be felt particularly by citizens of 48 visa-exempt and visa-on-arrival eligible countries.
On 19 May, President Adama Barrow of Gambia issued an executive order extending the country’s state of emergency until 9 June 2020. Under the state of emergency, all inbound and outbound flights, with the exception of medical and freight operations, remain suspended. Gambia’s land border with Senegal remains closed. Previously, Gambia granted visa-free entry universally, with the exception of 35 countries and territories.
On 19 May, Lesotho’s Public Health (COVID-19) (Amendment) Regulations, 2020, entered into effect, extending the closure of the country’s borders to all persons except in cases of emergency and where authorised by the Government of Lesotho. The restrictions immediately affect citizens of 71 visa-exempt jurisdictions.
On 19 May, President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda announced an easing of some of the country’s restrictions. Uganda’s borders, however, and all air, land, and maritime ports of entry remain closed. The closures have a direct effect on citizens of 37 visa-exempt countries.
On 20 May, authorities in Morocco extended the country’s state of emergency until 10 June 2020. Under the state of emergency, all inbound and outbound passenger flights remain suspended. The suspension affects citizens of 67 visa-exempt countries and territories.
On 22 May, authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo extended the country’s state of emergency until 6 June 2020. Under the state of emergency, the country’s air, land, and maritime ports of entry remain closed to passengers.
On 22 May, the Government of Liberia extended the country’s state of emergency until at least 7 June 2020. Under the state of emergency, foreign nationals are prohibited from entering the country and borders with Cote d’Ivoire, Guinea, and Sierra Leone remain closed. The restrictions directly affect citizens of 14 visa-exempt countries, including Cote d’Ivoire, Guinea, and Sierra Leone.
On 27 May, authorities in Cote d’Ivoire announced the extension of the country’s state of emergency until 14 June 2020. Under the state of emergency, the country’s border closures remain in effect, preventing citizens of 23 visa-exempt countries from entering the nation.
On 27 May, Guinea-Bissau re-opened its borders despite the state of emergency in the country. It is as yet unclear how the decision will affect international travel.
On 28 May, authorities in Algeria announced the extension of the country’s movement restrictions until 13 June 2020. All land borders remain closed and non-cargo international air and maritime travel remains suspended. The restrictions affect citizens of Libya, Malaysia, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Seychelles, and Tunisia who are eligible for visa-free stays in Algeria for up to 90 days.
Named relevant countries: Marshall Islands, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Tonga, Vanuatu.
On 1 May, the Ministry of Health of the Marshall Islands released a statement on social media announcing the extension of the current ban on incoming foreign nationals until 5 June 2020. The entry ban affects citizens of 96 jurisdictions eligible for visa-free or visa-on-arrival access to the Marshall Islands.
On 4 May, authorities in Papua New Guinea lifted some of the country’s restrictions, including the ban on international flights. However, inbound flights remain restricted to citizens and permanent residents of Papua New Guinea. Additionally, the country’s land border with Indonesia remains closed. The restrictions affect citizens of 71 countries eligible for visas-on-arrival, including Indonesia.
On 8 May, Vanuatu extended the country’s state of emergency for another 30 days. Under the state of emergency, Vanuatu’s borders remain closed to all non-resident foreign nationals with the exception of members of diplomatic bodies and international organisations. The restrictions affect citizens of 120 visa-exempt jurisdictions.
On 13 May, the Government of New Zealand relaxed the country’s restrictions to Alert Level 2. Under Alert Level 2, only New Zealand citizens and residents, and their children and partners, are permitted entry to New Zealand. Exceptions are determined on a case by case basis and all people travelling from abroad are required to undergo a 14-day Government-funded quarantine or managed isolation. The entry restrictions affect citizens of 60 visa waiver-eligible countries.
On 15 May, the Prime Minister of Tonga, Pohiva Tu’i’onetoa, renewed the country’s state of emergency until 11 June 2020. Under the state of emergency, flights to Tonga remain suspended, with the exception of humanitarian and repatriation flights. The flight suspension affects citizens of 70 visa-exempt and visa-on-arrival countries.