Health clearance may be needed for all future arrivals at Sri Lanka

Tourists arriving in Sri Lanka in the future must be armed with Covid-19 health clearance certificates approved by the World Health Organization (WHO) and be subjected to rapid testing at the airport, under a set of new proposals to revive tourism in the country.

Visitors must clear a WHO-designated health test two weeks prior to arrival and pass a rapid health test at the airport before they will be allowed to get to immigration counters.

Proposals for a new immigration process have been made to ensure arriving tourists have a clean bill of health

Under the proposed measures, future visitors will also need to book their accommodation in advance. Hotels will need to be certified as being Covid-19 prepared.

Detailing these measures in a webinar with other industry experts on Tuesday, Sri Lanka Tourism chairperson Kimarli Fernando added that a new visa process will also be implemented while visa-on-arrival will be terminated. The government is also deliberating the possibility of issuing five-year visas to encourage visitors to return.

Fellow speakers expressed hopes that Sri Lanka’s success in taming the viral spread – through a month-long countrywide lockdown and rigorous testing – will encourage travellers to regard Sri Lanka as a safe and healthy destination to visit once it is safe to do so.

So far, Sri Lanka has 309 cases, 100 recoveries and seven fatalities out of a population of 21.6 million people.

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