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Taiwan Requires Pre-flight Testing for Arrivals

Testing requirement is in addition to – not in lieu of – the 14-day mandatory quarantine

Beginning Dec. 1, Taiwan is requiring all inbound and transit passengers, including citizens and foreign residents, to take a COVID-19 PCR test within three days prior to departure from their country of origin, according to a report by Reuters in the Strait Times.

The testing requirement is in addition to the 14-day mandatory quarantine currently in place for arriving passengers.

Taiwan has marked over 200 days without a locally transmitted case of COVID-19. However as cases around the world spike once again, the nation is stepping up its precautionary measures, as detailed here.

Taiwan’s testing requirement are tentatively set to run until Feb. 28. The government reportedly has no plans to relax quarantine requirements for returning travelers during the Lunar New Year holidays, according to health minister Chen Shih-chung.

In September, the International Air Transport Association urged governments to adopt pre-flight testing to restore traveler confidence as an alternative to quarantines, which are “killing the industry’s recovery.”

Worldwide, a number of airlines and governments are cooperating on pre-flight testing trials, including programs between the US and the UK. The purpose is to gather data on the effectiveness of pre-flight tests at curbing the spread of COVID-19, in place of blanket quarantine policies.

Next month, Taiwan will also mandate masks to be worn in indoor public places, such as hospitals, public transport, shopping centers and sports venues, according to a government notice.