Israel set to reopen for international travellers from September 19

 Tuesday, September 7, 2021 

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Israel

On Sunday, September 5, 2021, Israel announced that it has decided to reopen its borders to international travellers from select countries, starting September 19. The move has been undertaken with the aim of reviving the tourism industry that has been massively affected with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Israel government’s tourism department reportedly mentioned that groups of between five and 30 people from countries on its green, yellow and orange lists would be allowed to enter the country. However, all travellers require to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

The tourism ministry also said that there will be no restrictions on the number of tour groups that Israel will let in, as per the new plan. However, groups from Israel’s red list comprising Bulgaria, Brazil, Mexico and Turkey will not be eligible to avail the same ease of restriction.

It was also mentioned that individual tourists, who have not been allowed to visit Israel since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic in March 2020 will still not be allowed to enter outside of a tour group. However, solo tourists who are visiting family members will get permission to enter the country. The government also said foreign tourists would be asked to show proof to show that they are vaccinated within the last six months or a booster shot in order to qualify for entry.

In addition, tourists will also have to provide a negative PCR test, taken up to 72 hours before arrival at Tel Aviv Airport. Israel previously allowed small tour groups as cases started to decrease around May. More than 2,000 visitors arrived at the destination mainly from the United States and Europe. Unfortunately, the government had to stop the tourism reopening plan in August due to the rise in Delta cases despite a brisk vaccination rollout.

Israel reported nearly 5,000 new cases of the coronavirus on Saturday. According to local media reports, 5.5 million out of 9.3 million population have received a second shot and another 2.5 million have received a third dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine.

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