A man wearing a face mask rests at a park in Hong Kong, south China, Feb. 16, 2021. (Xinhua/Lo Ping Fai)

HK reduces quarantine period for vaccinated travellers

Hong Kong will ease quarantine requirements for fully vaccinated inbound travellers starting from midnight on May 12.

The mandatory quarantine period will be reduced from 14 to 7 days for fully vaccinated travellers – including Hong Kong residents returning – from low-risk areas including mainland China, Macau, Taiwan, Australia, New Zealand and Singapore.

Travellers coming from these areas will be required to self-monitor for the following seven days, and be tested for COVID-19 on the 12th day after arrival.

‘Based on the “vaccine bubble” concept and the risk levels, the Government will further shorten the compulsory quarantine periods suitably for persons arriving at Hong Kong from overseas places, who have not stayed in extremely high-risk or very high-risk places, and who have completed their vaccination course,’ Hong Kong authorities stated.

Quarantine requirements will also be reduced to 14 days for travelers from medium and high-risk areas countries, including Bangladesh, Belgium, Canada, Ecuador, Egypt, Ethiopia, France, Germany, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Romania, Russia, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine, the United Arab Emirates and the United States.

Those coming from extremely high-risk areas such as India, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, Ireland and the United Kingdom will still have to fulfil a 21-day quarantine, even if they are inoculated against Covid-19.

Previously Chief executive Ho Iat Seng indicated that in order for travel requirements for Hong Kong arrivals to be eased, the neighbouring SAR would have to complete at least 14 consecutive days without new Covid-19 cases.

Hong Kong arrivals currently have to complete a 14-day quarantine upon arrival in the Macau SAR.

The SAR marked the third day in a row without a local infection and took the city’s overall Covid-19 tally to 11,811 cases, with 210 related deaths. Five preliminary-positive infections were also identified.