COVID-19: Which countries have restricted travel to and from India?
Amid an unprecedented surge in coronavirus cases across India, air travel has taken a huge hit. Several countries, including the UK, Hong Kong and Canada, have announced a ban on flights coming from India. Some others like the United States have issued travel advisory to all passengers flying in and out of India. Here's a list of countries that have imposed air travel restrictions.
Earlier this week, the United Kingdom put India in its travel "red list" effective from Friday. The order implies that if you have been in India in the past 10 days, you will only be allowed to enter the UK if you are a British, Irish, or third-country national with residency rights. Even in that case, you will have to quarantine at a hotel.
The government of Hong Kong has banned all flights from India for a period of 14 days starting April 20. The decision came after as many as 50 passengers of two Vistara flights from India tested positive for COVID-19 when tested on arrival earlier this month. Besides India, Hong Kong has also reportedly banned flights from Pakistan and the Philippines.
Canada has banned all flights from India as well as Pakistan for 30 days citing rising COVID-19 cases. However, cargo flights from both the countries will continue to operate. Half the people currently testing positive in Canada are from India, according to the data from the Health Ministry of Canada. Indian flights account for about one-fifth of Canada's air traffic.
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has banned flights from India for a period of 10 days. The travel ban will come into effect starting 11:59 pm on April 24, and is subject to review after that period. However, departure flights will continue to operate and the ban will not be extended to the citizens of UAE, diplomatic passport holders, and official delegations, reports said.
New Zealand was among the first countries to announce a temporary ban on travelers from India, including its own citizens, from April 11 to April 28. The travel ban was imposed after 17 of the 23 newly detected coronavirus there were reportedly traced to India. The neighboring Pakistan has also decided to ban travelers coming from India for two weeks.
The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a fresh travel advisory recommending people to avoid traveling to India amid the worsening coronavirus situation. It said that if one has to travel to India, they should first get fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and follow all COVID-19-related safety protocols after reaching India.