Covid-19: Countries easing rules, reopening borders for UAE travellers

Here's a list of countries that are reopening for foreigners in February.


Waheed Abbas

Published: Thu 10 Feb 2022, 2:44 PM

Last updated: Thu 10 Feb 2022, 10:30 PM

As the vaccination campaign against the Covid-19 pandemic continues in the UAE and worldwide, countries are easing restrictions and opening borders for foreign travellers.

According to Our World in Data, 10.3 billion doses of the Covid-19 vaccine have been administered globally while 4.22 billion people have been fully vaccinated.

On Wednesday, the UAE’s National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Management Authority (NCEMA) announced that all Covid-19-related restrictions will be completely lifted by mid-February.

In addition, the Supreme Committee of Crisis & Disaster Management in Dubai also announced the gradual lifting of all Covid-19 restrictions from February 15.

As a result of vaccination, governments around the world are also relaxing restrictions. Below is the list of countries that have opened up for foreigners or going to allow foreign visitors to visit in February.

>> Australia

Australia last week announced that it will reopen its borders for vaccinated travellers from February 21, 2022, after two years of restrictions as the number of new coronavirus cases are on the decline. "If you're double-vaccinated, we look forward to welcoming you back to Australia," Australian prime minister Scott Morrison said earlier in Canberra.

The country has taken many steps in recent months including relaxing border controls, allowing skilled migrants to enter and quarantine-free travel with select countries like New Zealand.

>> New Zealand

New Zealand government last week announced a phased reopening of its border for foreigners after two years.

Initially, only vaccinated New Zealanders in Australia can travel home from February 27 without a need to stay in a state-managed quarantine facility. But New Zealand citizens in the rest of the world will be able to do so two weeks later.

While foreign vaccinated people can enter New Zealand from March 13, up to 5,000 international students will be allowed to enter from April 12. Tourists from visa-free countries will only be allowed in by July and travellers from the rest of the world will not be to enter until October. But all travellers still need to self-isolate for 10 days.

>> The Philippines

Manila on Thursday lifted a ban on foreign travellers after two years. Under the new rules, travellers from 157 countries with visa-free arrangements with the Philippines who are vaccinated carry negative Covid-19 test can enter the country and are no longer required to quarantine on arrival.

“If you’re unvaccinated, you walk around and if you get contaminated, you will be awfully very, very sorry for yourself and your family,” President Rodrigo Duterte warned Filipinos earlier this week.


>> Bali (Indonesia)

Indonesia’s tourism capital Bali opened for tourists from all countries earlier this month. The holiday island opened for visitors from China, New Zealand, Japan and some other countries from October 2021. Indonesia also opened two islands near Singapore last month for visitors.

>> Malaysia

Malaysia’s National Recovery Council has recommended a full reopening of borders from March 1 without quarantine for foreign travellers. However, travellers will have to undergo Covid-19 screening before departure and on arrival.

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