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Govt changes travel rules to include pre-arrival Covid tests

Johnny Bugeja

The Gibraltar Government yesterday changed requirements for those travelling to Gibraltar, announcing a pre-departure Covid-19 test will be required as from Sunday.

This forms part of key changes to the Covid-19 testing and self-isolation requirements for entry into Gibraltar.

Yesterday afternoon the Government issued a technical notice clarifying the new rules, with cases in Gibraltar currently at nine active cases.

A fully vaccinated person visiting from any ‘Green List’ country, which includes the UK, Iceland, Israel and Australia, will be required to upload their valid vaccination certificate on the Gibraltar Passenger Locator Form. 

The Government added passengers should also be prepared to present a valid vaccination certificate to airline staff prior to boarding and book a Covid-19 Lateral Flow Test before arriving in Gibraltar by visiting: https://www.covidrapidtest.gi.

Requirements include travellers to take a Covid-19 Lateral Flow Test within 24 hours of arrival in Gibraltar. If remaining in Gibraltar for more than seven days, passengers will also be required to take a further Lateral Flow Test on day five from the date of arrival.

The technical notice added all air passengers are required to complete the passenger locator form by visiting: www.passengers.egov.gi.

All those who are vaccinated visiting Gibraltar need to ensure their Covid-19 vaccines must have received regulatory approval by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) in the UK, these include Pfizer, Astra Zeneca and Johnson & Johnson.

Those unvaccinated arriving from Green List countries will be required to buy a Covid-19 test and take this test within 48 hours of their flight, and similarly will need to take Lateral Flow Tests on day one and five.

Those vaccinated arriving from ‘Amber List’ countries such as the Philippines and South Africa, will be required to book Covid-19 Lateral Flow Tests before arriving in Gibraltar.

They must report having been to a country or territory in the Amber List to an officer of the Borders and Coastguard Agency and must present valid vaccination certificate upon arrival in Gibraltar.

For those unvaccinated from ‘Amber List’ countries further requirements include self-isolating for five days after arrival and PCR tests on day one and five.

The Government added, that apart from those who are exempt, people cannot travel into Gibraltar by air after visiting a ‘Red List’ country in the 10-day period preceding their date of arrival into Gibraltar.

Exceptions include Gibraltarians and Gibraltar residents, seafarers, Spanish nationals and residents on transit to Spain, those employed in Gibraltar, a member of the armed forces issued with a travel order, and in exceptional circumstances, a person granted permission by the Borders and Coastguard Agency to enter Gibraltar.

Red list countries include Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Egypt, India and Kenya. A full list is available on the Visit Gibraltar website.

The Government said a fully vaccinated person who has been to a ‘Red List’ country in the 10 days before travelling to Gibraltar would also need to have a pre-departure Covid-19 test, report to the Borders and Coastguard Agency, present a valid vaccination certificate, and take a Covid-19 PCR test on the day of arrival and on day five.

Those unvaccinated travelling from ‘Red List’ countries will need to self-isolate for 10 days and take a Covid-19 PCR test on the day of arrival and on day 10.

Further information and requirements are listed on the Government’s technical notice

The announcement comes as two individuals tested positive for Covid-19 on Thursday, bringing the total number of confirmed cases up to 4,306 since March 2020. 

The resident who tested positive is a vaccinated adult aged between 25 and 30, the Government spokesman said, while the other is a cross-frontier worker. 

At present there are nine active coronavirus cases on the Rock, with seven residents and two visitors recovering from the virus, while one visitor has made a full recovery. 

There are currently 33 individuals self-isolating and the new resident case was a close contact of an existing active case. 

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