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New travelling guidelines come into force today, categorisation of exempted countries leaves travellers confused

News Agencies | Updated on: 26 October 2021, 0:17 IST
Visual from IGI Airport (Photo: Traveller Farhan's Twitter handle)

The new guidelines for international travel came into effect from Monday onwards but the long queues for mandatory RT-PCR test on arrival left several travellers in a lurch.

Travellers took to Twitter to express the inconvenience they had to face at the Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGI Airport) and raised issues of mismanagement there.

The fully vaccinated travellers from the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Nepal, Belarus, Lebanon, Armenia, Ukraine, Belgium, Hungary, and Serbia, do not need to go for mandatory RT-PCR test and home quarantine. This is because India has reciprocal arrangements for mutual acceptance of World Health Organization (WHO) approved COVID-19 vaccines.

However, travellers from other countries have to undergo an RT-PCR test followed by a seven days quarantine.

Radhika, a traveller, uploaded a screenshot of her RT-PCR test report that is still showing pending after six days of her arrival. She had given a sample at the Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGI airport) as per the rule.

She claimed that she had uploaded her negative report for COVID-19 before boarding the flight.

Many travellers, especially the ones who were travelling to the Middle East countries also raised complaints of long queues and delays in test results of compulsory Rapid RT PCR test on social media, addressed to Delhi Airport authorities.

"Rapid RT-PCR that cost Rs 3900 is mandatory for travelling to the Middle East and sample testing is done within a time limit of 60 minutes. In the case of the RT-PCR test that costs Rs 500, it is mandatory for arrival and departure and test results are uploaded within 8-10 hours. We have made a hassle-free facility at the airport for the RT-PCR test," said a senior official at IGI airport.

After the new traveller guidelines, the Delhi airport is witnessing long queries from international travellers regarding the COVID-19 guidelines.

Farhan, a traveller, in a tweet, said, "Such long queues for Covid test at Delhi airport demonstrates mismanagement at a whole new level. No social distancing. No slots management. Passengers panicking due to the fear of missing their flights."

Another traveller, Vivek Singh said that the airport has failed to manage the festive rush followed by the normalcy of air traffic. "No Covid protocol has been followed at the sample testing centre or while entering the airport. Travellers can be seen roaming around without masks," he added.

"People are fighting and jumping queue. I was stuck for 40 min for security check. You guys surely need to set up things to maintain your awards for best airport. Totally disappointed," a traveller Naveen tweeted.


First published: 26 October 2021, 0:17 IST