South Africa restricts leisure travel

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Elephants drink at river in Kruger National Park, South Africa.
Elephants drink at river in Kruger National Park, South Africa. Photo Credit: Shutterstock/JMx Images

The South African government announced Wednesday that leisure travelers from countries with high rates of Covid-19 will still be barred from entry once borders reopen Oct. 1.

Leisure travelers from countries deemed high-risk, including the U.S., the U.K., Russia, France, India, the Netherlands and Portugal, among others, will not be permitted to enter South Africa. 

Business travel from high-risk countries will be allowed, particularly for travelers with scarce and critical skills, as well as diplomats, investors and people participating in professional sporting and cultural events. 

Only three airports, Cape Town, O.R. Tambo in Johannesburg and King Shaka in Durban, will be open for international travel. 

All travelers landing at these airports must present a polymerase chain reaction test result that is not older than 72 hours from the time of departure from the country of origin, and they must have travel insurance. Travelers will also be screened upon arrival, and those who present Covid-19 symptoms (including elevated body temperature and flu-like symptoms) will be required to take a Covid-19 test. Should the test results come back positive, the traveler will be subjected to mandatory quarantine.

The list of high-risk countries will be reviewed every two weeks, government representatives said.

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