Flights resume between Europe and south of Africa

PretoriaTravel, CC BY-SA 3.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

Flights between Europe and seven countries in the south of Africa are to resume after being suspended due to the omicron variant.

The members of the European Union have agreed that flights may be resumed to and from seven countries in the south of Africa. The flights were suspended on November 26 following the detection of the omicron variant in South Africa.

The countries of the EU cancelled all flights to South Africa, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Namibia, Mozambique and Zimbabwe. The restrictions are now coming to an end.


“Travellers coming from that area will still be subject to the health measures applicable to travellers from third countries,” said the French presidency of the Council of the EU.

Such restrictions are reviewed every two weeks.

According to recommendations from the EU Council, which are not legally binding and may or may not be implemented by each country, the twenty-seven countries must permit entry to citizens of third countries that have been vaccinated with vaccines approved in the EU.

They must also allow entry to “essential” travellers, such as European citizens, long-term residents of the EU and their families, diplomats and health workers, in addition to non-essential travellers from a series of countries based on certain epidemiological criteria, including Saudi Arabia, Argentina, Australia, Colombia, South Korea, Qatar, Peru, Rwanda and Uruguay.

However, all people “travelling from any country for essential or non-essential reasons must have had a negative PCR test performed no more than 72 hours before”.

Member states can also ask for additional requirements such as an isolation period or more diagnostic tests.


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