Sri Lanka Travel Update

SRI LANKA TRAVEL UPDATE/ 20th July 2021

 

Brilliant news for those wishing to travel to Sri Lanka! The destination is now open for tourists and better news for those who are fully vaccinated.

 

Pre-Requisites:

  • Valid passports
  • Please carry the original vaccine certificates
  • Pre-book the first night at a Level 1 “Safe & Secure” Hotel
  • Pre-pay for the travel local insurance ($12 per person for a cover of US$ 50,000)
  • Produce a “Negative PCR” test done 72hrs prior to boarding (make sure you produce a copy of the English version)

 

All travelers who are “fully vaccinated” need to only stay their first night at a Level 1 hotel and are free to move into the community from Day 2 provided that their PCR test results are negative. A “Discharged Card” would be your gateway to enjoy travel freely within the country. Following the general health guidelines is however required. It is as simple as that!

 

Not Vaccinated / Partially Vaccinated Guests:

Those who are not “fully vaccinated” can still visit the country but need to pre-book Level 1 “Safe & Secure” accommodation (up to 15 days) and travel within a “Safe Bio-Bubble”. On arrival PCR test and a further PCR test on Day 14 is required prior to being “discharged”.

 

For not vaccinated/ partially vaccinated guests: Visits to cultural sites and attractions are allowed but with safety restrictions. Please discuss this with our travel consultants.

 

During the past two weeks, daily Covid cases has reduced to the range between 1200-1400 per day. As of 20th July, the country Covid cases has reported over 286,000 from which over 262,000 Covid-19 patients have recovered/ discharged with 3,827 deaths so far.

 

VACCINATION PROGRESS:

 

There has been a remarkable improvement in recent weeks with the vaccines being received. Over 7,5 million vaccines have been administered so which means that over 48% of the adult population have at least been administered a single dose of the Covid-19 vaccine.

Over1,700,000 (approx. 12% of the adult population) being fully vaccinated which makes Sri Lanka ahead in the region in terms of the percentage of adult population being vaccined.

 

The Government of US has donated 1,5million doses of the Moderna vaccine which arrived on the 16th July and a further 1,45m doses of AstraZeneca vaccines are expected by end of July which will be donated by the Japanese government under the “Covax” agreement.

 

In addition, the government is administering AstraZeneca Pfizer-BionNTech, Sputnik V & Sinopharm vaccines to all those over the 30yrs of age as a priority. The government is confident to inoculate all adults over the age of 30yrs be September this year.

 

TOURISM:

Currently, travel within the Sri Lanka is not restricted for those who are fully vaccinated.

  1. Cultural sites and attractions such as National Parks are now open to tourists
  2. The governments of UAE and Kuwait have announced they will not embark any passengers out of Sri Lanka until further notice (This applies to Srilankans or any foreign nationals either transiting)
  3. The government has temporarily banned any travel/ flights from India, six from Vietnam/ African Region, South American Region and those who have a travel history to these regions within the 14 days

The government and the Health authorities assure that this temporary measure would benefit everyone in the next few weeks whilst obtaining the vaccines remains its highest priority.

 

Important

Our honest opinion is that travel to Sri Lanka is now possible. With the government’s aim to vaccinate those in the tourism industry as a priority and get all citizens above the aged of 30yrs and above vaccinated by end of September is seen as a positive and a pragmatic approach.

 

Travel within the European winter season seems positive. We are hopeful that the destination would be in a far better position by the end of the year.

 

Headline Summary

Sri Lanka is reckoned as one of the few countries / destinations who have successfully controlled the spread of the pandemic.

  • Our International borders have been opened for Tourism since 21stJanuary 2021
  • Sri Lanka has been identified as one of the “10 Safest Places to Travel” due to its effective control measures, recovery rate and low number of COVID related deaths
  • The Tourism Ministry introduced a comprehensive safety guidelines and protocols document in July 2020 which has been updated last in April 2021 – Sri Lanka Tourism Safety Protocols.
  • The government & the Tourism Ministry has encouraged all Hotels, Restaurants, DMCs and Tourism service providers to implement safety guidelines and protocols so that everyone is safe
  • The Tourism Ministry has been conducting awareness and training sessions to National Guides, Chauffeur Guides, Drivers on how to on best practices within the new COVID guidelines and protocols
  • “Safe & Secure” Certification has been awarded to hotels, DMCs and other supplier categories on successful completion of stringent audits and in-person training.
  • For the approved list of Places of Interest and Monuments under the current bio-bubble, please visit –  Approved Tourist Sites & Attractions.

 

UPDATED ENTRY/ VISA POLICY:

Please click on the links below for details of the new regulations (Page 5 of the guideline) –

Sri Lanka Travel | Hello Again

Sri Lanka Tourism Safety Protocols

 

 

 

Travel is now Possible

The following is subject to change/ further reviewed and is only a guideline.

 

For travel after 9th July 2021, “Fully Vaccinated Travellers” (Those who complete the required doses fulfil the 14 days after the last vaccination in their resident country before departing to Sri Lanka)

  • Negative PCR test has to be produced 72hrs prior to departure
  • First PCR test will need to be done on the first hotel prior to checking-in
  • If the PCR report is tested “Negative” they will be issued a “Discharged” card upon which they are allowed to get in to the community
  • A further PCR test needs to be done on Day 7 or based on the airline policy on departure
  • However, if any of their accompanying passengers who travel with them are not fully vaccinated (or not fulfil the required 14 days after full vaccination), they will need to strictly book only Level 1 hotels which is considered a safe travel bubble
  • If all are fully vaccinated, they are free to get into the local community and book other accommodation option which are not “Level 1” (however, they are required to maintain the local health guidelines)

 

Travellers who have not completed their vaccinations (Those who are not fully vaccinated or do not fulfil the required 14 days after full vaccination)

  • Negative PCR test has to be produced 72hrs prior to departure
  • To be accommodated/ booked only at Level 1 hotels
  • First PCR test will need to be done on the first hotel prior to checking-in
  • They could book multiple Level 1 hotels and travel between them
  • They could visit cultural sites and perform activities which are only approved during the approved time pockets
  • The final PCR test needs to be done on Day 14 or based on the airline policy on departure
  • After 14 days (with a negative PCR report), they can go into the community (which means out the safety travel bubble)

 

Progress on Vaccination

  • Sri Lanka completed the inoculation of its front-line workers (Healthcare and Military Personnel) by mid-February 2021
  • So far over 7.5 million vaccines have been administered in Sri Lanka (over 48% of the adult population has at least been administered a single dose of the vaccine)
  • Over 1,700,000 (12% of the population) have been fully vaccinated
  • The government has approved “AstraZeneca”, “Moderna”, Pfizer”, “Sputnik V” and “Sinopharm” which is currently being administered to those over the age of 30years and above
  • 1,5 million doses of Moderna vaccines (from the US govt.) arrived on the 16th July
  • 1,4 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccines (from the Japanese Govt.) are expected in July 2021
  • A Further 6 million doses of Sinopharm vaccines expected in August 2021
  • In addition, the government announced that it is expecting 140,000 doses of Pfizer-BionNTech between June-September and a further 4,5 million doses between Sept and December.
  • The government is confident of reaching its new target to cover a majority of the population before the end of the year.
  • So far 33 staff out of our 46 staff cadres have at least received their first dose of the vaccine (72%) with 16 of our staff being fully vaccinated (35%)

 

Our Initiatives

  • Authenticities was one of the first DMCs to be certified for “Safe & Secure” travel by Sri Lanka Tourism & audit firm KPMG
  • We produced our own safety guidelines and protocols which we have implemented
  • We are currently conducting awareness and training sessions amongst our Drivers and Chauffeur Guides on how to perform tours within the established guidelines

 

Our Pledge

  • As global travel continues to be affected by the spread of COVID-19, we want you to know that doing the right thing by our guests is our guiding light
  • Please don’t hesitate to call us at + 94 77 361 3267 with any questions or concerns
  • The wellbeing of our guests is our priority. We are happy to share our safety protocol with you so that you are comfortable with what we have done so far

Request for Authenticities Safety Protocols