CHINA: COVID Restrictions for Foreigners Eased

November 18, 2022

The Chinese government has announced several changes to its COVID control policy for foreigners traveling to China, effective Nov 11. Under the new policy:

  • Inbound travelers to China will now only be required to undergo a quarantine period of 5 + 3 days, instead of the previous 7 + 3 days.
  • Inbound travelers will now only be required to take one polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test within 48 hours before travelling to China, instead of the previously required two tests.
  • So-called “circuit breakers” for inbound flights found to be carrying infected passengers have been eliminated.
  • Individuals who were in close contact with a COVID-infected person will only be required to undergo centralized quarantine for 5 days followed by a further 3 days at an accommodation of their choosing.
  • Travelers from high-risk areas will be required to undergo a 7-day quarantine period at an accommodation of their choosing instead of at centralized quarantine hotel/accommodation.

These measures are aimed at increasing international travel to China, as well as easing domestic travel between regions within China.

Consular Posts

In response to the easing of quarantine protocols, multiple Chinese consular posts around the world have released simplified procedures in support of the procurement of health declaration code (HDC). As mentioned above, effective immediately, travelers going to China are only required to take one PCR test within 48 hours before boarding flights to China. This includes individuals who are traveling to China in transit to a further destination. Travelers may take a PCR test either at their city of departure, or their transit point as long as the PCR test is taken within 48 hours of the inbound flight to China and the health code is valid.

Chinese consular posts are also scraping the requirements for travelers with a history of infection, having been in close contact with an infected individual, or having suspected symptoms or inconclusive test results. They are now allowed to apply for the health declaration code if they present a negative COVID test result within 48 hours before boarding their flight.

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