As of 22 February, India has introduced stricter requirements for international travellers entering the country. This has come as a result of growing concerns that mutant variants of Covid-19 are beginning to spread throughout India. Travellers coming or transiting from the United Kingdom, Mainland Europe and the Middle-East will be subject to these requirements.
Last week, the Unions of Ministry of Health & Family Welfare and Ministry of Civil Aviation met to discuss the intricacies of the newer and more stringent measures to curtail the spread of Covid-19. Subsequently, State Governments throughout India can have been given the authority to impose additional layers of requirements for incoming international travellers, in relation to Covid-19 testing, quarantine and isolation.
Guidelines In A Nutshell
Passengers arriving on flights from the aforementioned countries must make sure that they have taken a RT-PCR Test (with a negative result) no later than 72 hours prior to boarding their flight. Upon arrival at their Indian Port of Entry, they will have to pay for a Molecular Test. If the outcome of this Test is negative, then those passengers can proceed to a home or airport quarantine for seven days.
Thereafter, they must be re-tested and if the result is also negative, then they can proceed to self-monitor their health for a further seven days. However, if any passenger tests positive at any point after they arrive in India, they will then be subject to isolation rules, where the corresponding treatment protocols will be applicable.
Keep in Mind Transit Time!
Nobody enjoys having to sprint towards the Airport Gate, and the prospect of doing so will only increase as a result of these new measures. Therefore, the recommendation from the Indian government is that transiting passengers leave a gap of six to eight hours between their connecting flights within India. This is particularly important, should you be transiting through the busiest hubs in the country, namely Delhi, Bengaluru, Chennai and Mumbai.