December 31, 2020
31-Dec-2020

AMERICAS

Canada (Security threat level – 2): On 30 December 2020, the Canadian government announced that travelers arriving aboard aircraft will soon be required to provide proof of negative results of COVID-19 PCR test taken 72 hours prior to boarding their aircraft. The country’s intergovernmental affairs minister stated that the requirement will come into effect within one week. At present, travelers must observe a 14-day self-quarantine after arriving in Canada, which will continue to be in place, and must provide travel information using the ArriveCAN online platform. Foreign nationals are banned from entering Canada except those designated as exempt; information regarding exemptions and entry requirements is available here.

Peru (Security threat level – 3): On 30 December 2020, authorities imposed a 2200-0400 local time (0300-0900 UTC) nightly curfew from 31 December to 3 January 2021, in the Arequipa, Huánuco, Ica, Junín, Moquegua and Tacna regions to curb the spread of COVID-19. Additionally, shopping centers in these regions are limited to 40% occupancy capacity.

ASIA

Mongolia / India / Taiwan (Security threat levels – 2 / 3 / 1): As of 30 December 2020, the Mongolian government has extended the existing suspension of all international air and rail transportation into and out of the country through at least 31 March 2021. The suspension was set to expire on 31 December prior to being extended. Only Mongolian nationals and permanent residents are permitted to enter the country. Inbound travelers who receive authorization to enter Mongolia must undergo a 14-day quarantine at a government-designated facility at their own expense followed by an additional seven-day self-isolation at home or a private accommodation, where they will be subject to regular health screenings and COVID-19 tests. Meanwhile, a citywide lockdown is in place for the capital Ulaanbaatar until at least 0600 local time on 6 January (2200 UTC on 5 January). Residents are prohibited from traveling outside their homes except to perform essential activities, such as traveling to and from work, to obtain food and medicine, or to seek emergency medical care. Nonessential businesses and academic institutions are closed and travel into and out of the city is permitted only for essential purposes. Travelers permitted to enter the city must undergo COVID-19 testing and complete a health questionnaire.

On 30 December Indian authorities extended the ongoing suspension of all commercial flights between India and the U.K. until at least 2359 local time (1829 UTC) on 7 January 2021. The ban was in place from 23-31 December prior to being extended. Authorities announced a gradual resumption of flights after the suspension according to a strict framework which has yet to be announced.

On 30 December the Taiwanese government announced that all foreign travelers will be banned from entering the island as of 1 January 2021 until further notice. Exemptions to the entry ban include business travelers with special permits, diplomats, permanent residents and children and spouses of Taiwanese nationals. In addition, all transit flights through Taiwanese airports as well as all direct commercial flights between Taiwan and the U.K. will be suspended.

AUSTRALASIA

Australia (Security threat level – 2): On 31 December 2020, officials in South Australia state — where Adelaide is located — announced that the states will close its borders with neighboring New South Wales — where Sydney is located — as of 0001 local time on 1 January 2021 (1301 UTC on 31 December) until further notice. In addition, officials in Victoria state — where Melbourne is located — are set to close the state’s borders with New South Wales as of 2359 local time on 1 January. Limited exemptions will be in place for returning residents, essential personnel and others at the discretion of health officials. Travelers permitted to enter the states must observe a 14-day self-isolation and may be required to undergo COVID-19 testing on arrival.

Meanwhile, authorities in the state of Western Australia — of which Perth is the capital — announced that the state will close its borders with Victoria beginning at 0001 local time on 1 January until further notice. Returning residents and essential personnel are exempt from the ban, but must observe a 14-day self-quarantine after arrival and undergo COVID-19 testing on day 11 of quarantine. The quarantine and testing requirements also apply to travelers who arrived in Western Australia from Victoria on or after 21 December.

EUROPE

Ireland / Latvia / Norway (Security threat levels – 2 / 2 / 2): On 31 December 2020, the Norwegian justice minister announced that as of 2 January 2021, all travelers entering Norway will be required to take a COVID-19 test within 24 hours after arrival. Travelers will be required to arrive at designated ports of entry, where COVID-19 testing is available, and entry points that lack COVID-19 testing facility will be shut down. Norway’s entry ban on travelers originating in the U.K. is currently set to expire on 2 January.

On 30 December 2020, Irish authorities reinstated full Level 5 restrictions — the most rigid on the five-tier alert scale — nationwide to curb the spread of COVID-19. The restrictions came into effect on 31 December and are set to be in place until 31 January 2021. Under the new orders, residents are required to remain within 5 km (3 mi) of their homes, except for essential purposes, such as for work or education. Visits to private homes and gardens are banned, as are social and family gatherings, except for weddings with up to six people and funerals with up to 10 people. Additionally, all nonessential retail businesses and gyms are required to close. Meanwhile, the current ban on travel from the U.K. and South Africa has been extended until 6 January.

The Latvian government has extended the ongoing nationwide state of emergency imposed to stem the spread of COVID-19 until at least 7 February 2021. The declaration was set to expire on 11 January before being extended. In addition, from 30 December to 4 January, a nationwide nightly curfew from 2200-0500 local time (2000-0300 UTC) is in effect. The nightly curfew will also be in place from 8-10 January. During curfew hours, residents are prohibited from traveling outside their homes except to perform essential activities, such as traveling to work, or to obtain emergency medical care. Previously announced restrictions, including nightly business closures, face mask requirements and social gathering limits remain in place. Additional information regarding restrictions imposed by the Latvian government is available here.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

Barbados (Security threat level – 1): On 30 December 2020, the U.K. Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) issued updated travel advice for Barbados, which reads in part as follows: “From 30 December 2020 to 6 January 2021, a limited COVID-19 Directive will be in place to enforce the Barbados Travel Protocols and prevent the spread of COVID-19. Measures include a limit on the number of people allowed at events and group gatherings on beaches limited to 50 with social distancing mandated. For full details and to find out how the limited COVID-19 Directive may impact on your plans to celebrate the new year, please look at the Barbados Government Information Service website. ”

Burkina Faso (Security threat level – 4): On 30 December 2020, the U.S. Embassy in Ouagadougou issued a Security Alert that reads in part as follows: “The U.S. Embassy reminds U.S. citizens that terrorist groups continue plotting attacks in Burkina Faso and may be planning attacks over the 2021 New Year’s holiday.

“As a result, the Embassy has informed its employees to avoid hotels and restaurants frequented by expatriates and Westerners over the New Year’s holiday, as these locations have historically been the target of terrorist attacks in Ouagadougou.

“Terrorists may conduct attacks with little or no warning against locations in Ouagadougou including hotels frequented by Westerners.”

Dominican Republic (Security threat level – 3): On 30 December 2020, the U.S. Embassy in Santo Domingo issued an alert regarding a nationwide curfew in the Dominican Republic, which reads in part as follows: “The following curfew information has been updated on the Embassy Santo Domingo COVID-19 website:

  • Beginning December 31, the government of the Dominican Republic has issued a curfew nationwide. Failure to follow the curfew, including for U.S. citizens, may result in arrest and/or fines. Full details on the curfew can be found at https://presidencia.gob.do
  • December 31: Curfew will begin at 7pm.
  • January 1-10 (M-F): Curfew from 5pm to 5am, with a grace period for transit until 7pm each day.
  • January 1-10 (Sa-Sun): Curfew from 12pm to 5am.”

Egypt (Security threat level – 4): On 31 December 2020, the U.S. Embassy in Cairo Issued a Health Alert, which reads in part as follows: “The Government of Egypt has announced that commencing Sunday, January 3, 2021, individuals who do not adhere to precautionary measures such as wearing a mask indoors may be subject to an immediate fine or prosecution. Please note the U.S. Embassy is unable to intercede on behalf of U.S. citizens who are identified for violating these measures.

“The Government of Egypt has canceled all public New Year’s celebrations. All indoor weddings, funerals, festivals, or other mass gatherings are canceled indefinitely.

“Starting Sunday, January 3, 2021, businesses such as restaurants and cafes have been ordered to reduce the number of patrons to 50 percent of capacity or less, with penalties of 4,000 LE to temporary business closures.”

To read the full text of the alert, please click here.