In news that’s sure to delight travellers, Sri Lanka has reopened its borders to vaccinated Indian travellers.
The island nation has issued a new travel advisory specifically for travellers from India, detailing the various requirements they need to fulfill in order to plan their trip.
And because we love to keep things simple, we’ve divided the (very detailed) guidelines into categories so you can plan your trip step-by-step with ease.
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PS: You can get the latest COVID-19 travel guidelines for all domestic and major international destinations with the help of our COVID-19 Guidelines Tracker.
Let’s take a look:
Only fully vaccinated travellers arriving from India, that is, travellers who have received both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, are permitted to travel to Sri Lanka after two weeks of receiving the second dose. This also includes travellers transiting through the country.
Sri Lankan authorities have also stated that there is no minimum duration of stay required, and that in order to be considered fully vaccinated, any vaccine type accepted by the country of origin is acceptable.
Travellers arriving from India (including transit) who have recovered from COVID-19 and have received one dose of vaccine will be considered as ‘fully vaccinated’.
Such travellers should present a valid document certifying their COVID-19 illness (in English) and depart between 28 – 90 days from the date of a positive COVID-19 NAAT test. They must arrive after getting at least a single dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
The vaccination certificate should indicate that the traveller has received the single dose. The vaccine should be given 14 days after the positive COVID-19 test report and 14 days before departure. This certificate should contain the name of the person, as well as the dates and details of the conducted tests.
Non-vaccinated or partially vaccinated travellers will not be permitted to travel.
Travel & visa requirements
All tourists must have a valid tourist visa before boarding the flight, and the visas can be applied for online at eta.gov.lk
Before applying for the visa, make sure to keep the following documents handy:
- A pre-paid booking at an ‘L1 Safe and Secure’ 3-star or above category hotel for the first two days, until the on-arrival PCR test is performed. You can get detailed information about ‘L1 Safe and Secure’ stays here.
- A pre-paid booking at a 3-star or above category hotel for the rest of the stay.
- Pay for the mandatory COVID-19 local travel insurance cover, priced at USD 12 for a policy of USD 50,000, up to a period of one month (including children below two years of age).
- Pay for the on-arrival PCR test (USD 40 per PCR test). Children below two years of age are exempted from PCR tests. However, children will undergo PCR tests if the parents/guardians develop symptoms or result in positive PCR test reports.
- Pay for the COVID-19 insurance and PCR tests and obtain your tourism reference number required to apply for the visa.
All arriving travellers must carry a negative PCR test report, with the test done within 72 hours prior to embarkation. Children below two years of age are exempted from this.
The RT-PCR report and the vaccination certificate/COVID-19 recovery certificate will be checked on arrival at the airport.
Travellers from India will quarantine at an ‘L1 Safe & Secure’ 3-star or above category hotel and undergo an on-arrival PCR test. If they test negative, they can leave the bio-bubble.
Unvaccinated children between 2–18 years of age are allowed to leave the bio-bubble with fully vaccinated parents upon a negative on-arrival PCR test on day 1.
Fully vaccinated adults, discharged from the’ L1 Safe & Secure Certified’ hotel with a negative on-arrival (day 1) COVID-19 PCR report are exempted from the second PCR test.
Unvaccinated children between 2–18 years of age, who left the bio-bubble with the fully vaccinated parents and negative on-arrival (day 1) PCR test results will undergo a COVID-19 PCR test on day 10 after arriving in Sri Lanka.
Direct flights to Colombo are available from New Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai, under the India – Sri Lanka air bubble arrangement. Travellers can also fly to Colombo from Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Kolkata with one-stop connections.
You can check the entire travel guidelines in detail here. We’d also advise you to check the requirements with your respective airlines so as to avoid any hassles while travelling.
So what are you waiting for? Get up, get your Sri Lanka entry requirement checklist in order, and get ready for a beachy vacay!