Hong Kong scraps hotel quarantine

HONG KONG, 26 September 2022: Hong Kong’s travel industry welcomed last week’s announcement that ends its Covid-19 hotel quarantine policy starting today.

Under the revised rules, all international arrivals will be able to return home or to the accommodation of their choice but will have to self-monitor for three days after entering the Chinese special administrative territory, the government said on Friday.

“We are aiming in one single direction of allowing people to come with more convenience and they are allowed to go about their activities with maximum possibilities,” Chief Executive John Lee told the press briefing.

People will be allowed to go to work or school but will not be allowed to enter bars or restaurants for three days. A pre-flight PCR test required for travellers to Hong Kong 48 hours before flying will be replaced by a Rapid Antigen Test.

Business groups had slammed the city’s strict Covid-19 rules, saying they threatened Hong Kong’s competitiveness. International arrivals had to spend three days in a self-paid hotel followed by four days of self-monitoring, allowing them to move around the city.

In a statement released at the weekend, Cathay Pacific said it welcomed the Hong Kong SAR Government’s latest measures to facilitate travel to Hong Kong, especially the decision to remove the hotel quarantine arrangement for passengers arriving in Hong Kong effective 26 September 2022.

“These adjustments will help boost sentiment for travel, thereby facilitating the gradual resumption of travel activities and strengthening network connectivity to, from and through the Hong Kong aviation hub.

“We intend to add more than 200 pairs of passenger flights in October to both regional and long-haul destinations. Given Japan’s relaxation of travel restrictions for inbound visitors, Cathay Pacific will resume daily flights to Tokyo (Haneda) from 1 November and four-times-weekly flights to Sapporo from 1 December. We will also increase flight frequencies to Tokyo (Narita) to 43 pairs and Osaka to 50 pairs in October.”

Airport Authority Hong Kong commented: “AAHK looks forward to the continued air traffic recovery. We are working closely with the airport community to prepare for the expected increase in flights and passengers.”

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