Flying overseas under lockdown level 1 – What you need to know

Minister of Transport Fikile Mbalula has explained how flying to other countries will work for South Africans.

Speaking at a press conference on Friday morning, Mbalula said that the following airports will be open for overseas flights:

  • OR Tambo International Airport
  • King Shaka International Airport
  • Cape Town International Airport

He said those who wish to fly overseas must provide their airline operator with a negative polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test certificate or a valid COVID-19 negative test certificate from an accredited laboratory.

Mbalula also explained that each airline operator is responsible for ensuring that passengers aboard its planes comply with the COVID-19 requirements in the country of destination.

“If you fly to Dubai or you fly to wherever it is that you are permitted to fly, it will then be required by the operator that you are actually compliant with COVID-19 regulations of that particular country.”

“This is the same for those who come to South Africa,” Mbalula said.

Mbalula also tweeted that foreign operators will be required to submit procedures that show the level of compliance with South African COVID-19 legislation for approval to the South African Civil Aviation Authority.

“Operators are allowed to provide catering on-board an aircraft, i.e. provided that they take all risk mitigation, health and safety measures to contain the spread of COVID-19 , including the provision of pre-packed meals,” added Mbalula.

Upon arrival

The government previously detailed what will happen upon the arrival of travellers into South African airports.

Travellers will be screened at the port of entry for any COVID-19 symptoms and for contact with people who have been infected with COVID-19.

They must also provide proof of accommodation addresses in case they need to self-isolate at the time of arrival in the country.

Additionally, upon arrival in South Africa, travellers will need to present negative COVID-19 test results not older than 72 hours from the time of departure.

If they do not have results that fit these criteria, travellers will be required to stay in a 10-day mandatory quarantine at their own cost.

All international travellers will also be asked to install the COVID-19 Alert South African app.

High-risk countries

Government has divided countries into three risk groups based on their relation to South Africa’s risk level based on the same criteria – high-risk, medium-risk, and low-risk.

Leisure travellers from high-risk countries will not be allowed to travel to South Africa – with the exception of business travellers with scarce and critical skills.

These people include diplomats, repatriated persons, investors, and people participating in professional sporting events.

If South Africans travel to a high-risk country, they will be regarded as being from a high-risk country upon their return to South Africa.

Minister of Home Affairs Aaron Motsoaledi provided a list of high-risk countries. These are listed below:

  • Albania
  • Argentina
  • Armenia
  • Austria
  • Bahrain
  • Belgium
  • Bolivia
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Brazil
  • Chile
  • Columbia
  • Costa Rica
  • Croatia
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Ecuador
  • France
  • Georgia
  • Greece
  • Guatemala
  • Guyana
  • Honduras
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • India
  • Iran
  • Iraq
  • Ireland
  • Israel
  • Jamaica
  • Jordan
  • Kuwait
  • Lebanon
  • Luxemburg
  • Maldives
  • Malta
  • Mexico
  • Moldova
  • Montenegro
  • Nepal
  • Netherlands
  • North Macedonia
  • Oman
  • Palestine
  • Panama
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Portugal
  • Puerto Rico
  • Qatar
  • Romania
  • Russia
  • Slovakia
  • Suriname
  • Switzerland
  • Ukraine
  • United Emirates
  • United Kingdom
  • USA
  • Venezuela

Now read: Government reveals the high-risk countries that are not allowed to visit South Africa

Latest news

Partner Content

Show comments


Share this article
Flying overseas under lockdown level 1 – What you need to know