Qatar Airways Bans Passengers From Eight South African Countries

The decision is due to the spread of a new variant of COVID-19 Omicron first detected in South Africa.

Highlights:

  • The new restriction for passengers from seven countries takes place in “immediate effect”.
  • The ban came after WHO’s announcement that Omicron is a variant of concern.
  • Qatar Airways will change the restrictions based on the information from WHO about the new variant.

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Qatar Airways

Due to the recent emergence of the new COVID-19 variant Omicron, Qatar Airways will no longer accept passengers from a few South African countries ­­-- Luanda, Angola, Mozambique, Johannesburg, Capetown, Durban, Lusaka and Harare – until further notice, says a press release from the airline. However, the airline will continue to carry passengers who wish to travel to these countries according to its current COVID-19 restrictions. The ban is enforced with immediate effect.

Qatar Airways will review the situation daily and make amendments based on new information available from World Health Organization (WHO). WHO has deemed the new variant Omicron as a variant of concern with more transmissible capabilities and evasive of the vaccine.

“With immediate effect, passengers will no longer be accepted for travel from South Africa and Zimbabwe on #QatarAirways flights. We will continue to review the situation on a daily basis as new information becomes available from the WHO,” the airlines tweeted in their official handle.

The airline has requested the affected passengers to contact their travel agents or the airline to resolve their travelling issues.

The countries like the US, UK, and the Netherlands are tackling the new variant virus with an aggressive ban on passengers from South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, and Swaziland.

Qatar COVID-19 Travel Policy

Qatar has classified countries into green and red, in addition to exceptionally red countries based on international and local health risk indicators of COVID-19. Non-residents of Qatar must register via the pre-registration system on the www.ehteraz.gov.qa website for entering Qatar. They need to submit documents such as a vaccine certificate at least three days before arrival.

Additionally, PCR test result is no longer required during the electronic pre-registration process. Instead, the passengers must present the original copy of the PCR test result to the airlines at the time of boarding. The Ministry of Public Health has the right to conduct random examinations of passengers upon arrival in Qatar through its air, land and seaports. The pre-registration is optional for citizens and residents of Qatar.

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Ria is a lead news writer at Aviation Scoop. She writes from dawn to dusk, reads in the evenings, and draws at some ungodly hours. She loathes human interaction and finds solace in the sweet, musky smell of old books, and rain.

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