destination updates

Discova Destination Updates

Last Updated: September 26, 2022

This page is regularly updated with the latest information on border status, entry requirements, and COVID restrictions across our destinations.

Check below for a snapshot view of travel restrictions per market and destination. Otherwise, navigate the contents to check the latest for each country.

For further information, or if you have any destination-specific questions, please reach out to our helpful, knowledgeable teams.

Destinations

🇰🇭 Cambodia

  • Unvaccinated travellers no longer need to undergo quarantine but will be subject to a mandatory rapid test on arrival, for which they will have to pay 5 USD. 
  • Fully-vaccinated travellers no longer need to provide proof of negative Covid-19 PCR test result and no longer have to undergo a rapid test upon arrival. They will have to provide proof of Covid vaccination upon arrival, and are still encouraged to take a rapid test by themselves, even if this is no longer a requirement.
  • The Visa on Arrival service is available again for travellers entering via air, land or sea.
  • These are the conditions for entry from November 15th: proof of vaccination at least 14 days before entry.
  • Provided these conditions are met, visitors from any country will be allowed entry.
  • Visitors will be allowed to explore the different regions of Cambodia restriction-free.
  • In-destination, mask-wearing is obligatory in indoor public settings.

Many places are reporting that a proof of insurance cover is necessary for entry. We can confirm that this is not a mandatory requirement.

🇨🇳 China

  • There has been no specific date given with regard to opening up the country for foreign tourists.
  • News agencies are reporting that the target of 80% vaccination of the population needs to be reached before any relaxation occurs.
  • Those allowed to enter under exceptional circumstances will be quarantined in designated facilities for 7 days for medical observation. After the 7 days of quarantine, 3 days of home isolation is requested.
  • China continues its ‘zero covid’ policy with strict restrictions and local lockdowns going into effect at the first sight of cases. There were lockdowns in Xiamen and Putian in September after cases only in the single digits.
  • Life is largely back to normal in China. Citizens still need to use their tracing apps to show they have ‘green’ status to use pubic transport, but most things are open. Things can change quickly.

We expect the tracing app with the traffic light system to be a feature foreign tourists will have to use once they arrive.

🇨🇷 Costa Rica

  • Borders are open to tourists from all countries based on migration processes established in the General Law of Migration and Foreign Affairs of Costa Rica.
  • All travellers can enter the country without a travel policy and travellers no longer have to fill out a health pass before entering. 
  • There are no longer any Covid-19 related entry requirements for Costa Rica, however, rules may change at short notice. Remain up-to-date with out Destination Updates.

The list of authorized vaccines (to be exempt from the need for a travel policy) include:

  1. AstraZeneca
  2. Janssen
  3. Moderna
  4. Pfizer-BioNTech
  5. Sinovac
  6. Sinopharm
  7. Covaxin

  • Mask wearing is mandatory in health establishments like hospitals, pharmacies, clinics, and EBAIS. 
  1.  
  • All establishments, activities and events can work at 100% capacity. 

🇨🇺 Cuba

  • Cuba is open to all travellers. There is no need to provide a negative PCR test or quarantine on arrival. Arriving passengers are sometimes randomly selected for on-arrival RT-PCR testing.
  • Anyone testing positive on arrival will be moved to quarantine in a designated government health centre, at their own expense. Direct contacts of those testing positive will either be moved to a designated government health centre or allowed to self-isolate in their own accommodation depending on their circumstances. 
  • Travellers are recommended to wear masks on public transportation and in public places where it is not possible to keep a distance. Travellers are required to wear masks in medical consultations, and in hospitals.
  • Travellers’ passports should be valid for at least two months after their departure date from Cuba.
  • Medical insurance is required for Cuba, and it must cover any type of medical emergency, including Covid-19. Medical insurance can be bought in Cuba at the airport or at www.cubatravel.cu if travellers don’t have it prior to travel.

🇩🇴 Dominican Republic

  • The Dominican Republic is open for tourism without any need for Covid testing, proof of vaccination, or quarantine.
  • When required, random Covid testing may be performed on arrival.
  • All foreign and Dominican passengers entering or leaving the Dominican Republic on commercial flights must complete the free electronic entry and exit form.
  • The use of face masks is recommended in indoor public places and public transport. Social distancing is also mandatory where possible.
  • As of October 11, the nighttime curfew is no longer in effect.
  • Vaccination cards will not be needed to gain access to hotels or resorts, restaurants, shops, etc. 

🇭🇰 Hong Kong

 

  • From 26 September 2022, international travellers arriving at Hong Kong International Airport will no longer be required to undergo compulsory hotel quarantine; instead, the new ‘0+3’ boarding and medical surveillance arrangements will apply.
  • Presentation of a negative nucleic acid testing report prior to boarding will no longer be required. Instead, a declaration of the negative result of a self-arranged rapid antigen test (RAT) conducted within 24 hours prior to the scheduled time of departure should be made via the online Health & Quarantine Information Declaration of the Department of Health.
  • Those aged 12 or above will still be required to be fully vaccinated or have obtained a medical exemption certificate before they are allowed to board a flight for Hong Kong.
  • “Test-and-go” arrangement will be implemented at the Hong Kong International Airport, i.e. inbound persons will not be required to wait for the test result at the airport after undergoing specimen collection for the nucleic acid test. They can take public transport or self-arranged transport to return to their home or their hotel of choice.
  • Quarantine arrangement upon arrival at Hong Kong will be changed to “0+3”, i.e. no compulsory quarantine will be required. There will be three days of medical surveillance during which inbound persons are free to go out but are obliged to comply with Amber Code restrictions under the Vaccine Pass, followed by a four-day self-monitoring period, making it a 7-day observation period in total.
  • Nucleic acid tests at community testing centres, mobile testing stations or other recognised institutions on Day 2, Day 4 and Day 6 (the day of arrival is Day 0) will be required upon arrival at Hong Kong, supplemented by daily RATs from Day 1 to Day 7.
  • Gathering restrictions will remain at four people in public until further notice.
  • The government requires mask-wearing when using public transport, including in terminals. Travellers need to wear masks in indoor and outdoor public places.
  • Restaurants, along with gyms, hotels, cinemas, and other scheduled venues, are required to display QR codes for the LeaveHomeSafe mobile app. People scan on entering these places to trace movement in case of Covid outbreaks

🇮🇩 Indonesia

Fully-vaccinated travellers no longer need to provide proof of negative Covid test result upon arrival in Indonesia. Vaccinated travellers also do not need to take a PCR test upon arrival (as long as they pass the body temperature screening) or stay in a CHSE hotel.
• Regulations for vaccinated international travellers doing domestic travel (for example between Bali and neighbouring islands like Java or Lombok) vary:
1) 1 vaccine dose: provide RT-PCR negative test (3x 24 hours)
2) 2 or 3 vaccine doses: no need to provide proof of any testing
3) If positive, travellers cannot travel and have to quarantine (5 days self-quarantine)

• Proof of health insurance covering Covid-19 treatment is no longer required.
• Travellers from a list of 86 selected countries may opt to enter with Visa on Arrival (VoA) instead of a sponsored visa.
• As from 6 April, Indonesia has reintroduced visa exemption for the following 9 ASEAN countries: Brunei, Philippines, Cambodia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. Citizens from these countries no longer have to pay for a VoA and can enter for free.
• Unvaccinated travellers must undergo 4N/5D quarantine.
• Foreign nationals from all other countries that do not fall under the 75 selected for VoA eligibility (see list below), must still enter under the special B211 visa scheme previously introduced.

Visa on Arrival will be available for travellers from these 86 countries, upon entry via Bali:

Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Brunei, Cambodia, Canada, China, Denmark, England, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Italy, Japan, Laos, Malaysia, Mexico, Myanmar, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Seychelles, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Netherlands, Philippines, Tunisia, Turkey, UEA, USA, Vietnam, Austria, Croatia, Latvia, Portugal, Romania, Czech Republic, Estonia, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Slovakia, Slovenia, Timor Leste, Tunisia, Estonia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Greece, Ireland, Bahrain, Belarus, Bosnia, Kuwait, Egypt, Morocco, Oman, Peru, Russia, Serbia, Ukraine, Jordan, Maldives, Monaco, Colombia, Albania, Andorra, Chile, Ecuador, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Palestine, San Marino, Suriname, Uzbekistan, and the Vatican.

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  • The cost for VoA is IDR 500.000 (pay on the spot), payment can be made by Cash, Debit Card or Credit Card (Master Card and Visa only).
  • The VoA is valid for 30 days and can be extended at an immigration office for another 30 days. After that, travellers must depart the country.

Discova Indonesia can be a guarantor and assist your clients in obtaining the B211A Visa for travellers. 

Required documentation:

  1. Passport that is valid for at least 6 months.
  2. A return ticket or connecting flight to prove onward journey to another country after leaving Indonesia.
  3. 2x colour photograph, size 4 cm x 6 cm.
  4. Proof of having living expenses while in the Indonesia Territory at a value of least USD 2,000.
 
  • Visa fee: IDR 2,000,000 per person.
 

Terms and conditions:

  1. This E-Visa can be applied for all countries around the world (no quota limitation) who are not eligible for VoA.
  2. No refund of money if the visa is rejected.
  3. E-Visa validity is 60 days and can be extended to maximum of 6 months at the Immigration Office in Bali with cost IDR 500.000
  4. Process approval visa verification takes 5 days to 7 days.
  5. Visa working hours are from 9 AM – 16 PM GMT+8 (Mon– Fri). 
  • Provide proof of vaccination certificate (obtained at least 14 days before arrival).
  • Download PeduliLindungi app (tracing app).
  • You will have to verify an e-Hac (Electronic Health Alert Certificate that will generate a unique barcode to show on arrival) code when you travel domestically.
  • Register e-CD (Electronic Custom Declaration).
  • Provide the proof of your quarantine hotel booking (5 x 24 hours) if required.
  • Prepare negative PCR result if unvaccinated.
  • Prepare immigration documents.
  • Comply with health protocols during stay in Indonesia, including wearing of masks in crowded outdoor spaces (like concerts) and indoor public spaces.
  • PCR test will be conducted on day 4 of the quarantine period.
  • Tourists can travel around Indonesia after quarantine is completed.

The quarantine requirement for non/partially vaccinated travellers may soon be dropped.

🇯🇵 Japan

 
  • From 7 September, Japan accepts foreign tourists from all countries on both unescorted (these don’t have a guide booked for every single day) and escorted tours. If tourists come from blue or yellow countries (this is not where they live but where they stay 14 days prior to arrival) and have a valid vaccination certificate, pre-departure testing is no longer required. Additional testing and quarantine requirements for travellers from yellow and red countries with/without a valid vaccination certificate vary and can be found here.
  • The health condition of those who need to be isolated after arriving to Japan will be checked daily by phone, mail or SNS.  
  • Travellers will need to sign off on a consent form with specific rules. If they don’t follow the rules (guidelines, infection prevention measures and similar instructions), they will have to, in the worst case scenario, return to their home country. Furthermore, the visa application which Discova sponsors, will be rejected in the future.
  • All travellers must provide proof of Covid-19 health insurance.
  • The number of arrivals permitted per day has been increased to 50,000. Discova cannot check or control whether this limit has been reached.
 
Unescorted tour
  1. A registered travel company (like Discova) or travel service arrangement company in Japan must sponsor the visa.
  2. International return flight tickets and all the accommodation during their stay in Japan must be confirmed by the above travel company. 
 

If return tickets and partial accommodation is confirmed by overseas travel agent and flight ticket itself or written confirmation for tickets/accommodation are shared between overseas travel company and registered travel company (Discova) and details are confirmed, point 2 (above) is considered to fulfilled. If flight tickets and all the accommodation is only confirmed by overseas travel agent, point 2 is not fulfilled.
 
During a tour, communication (phone, mail, SNS, etc.) between tourists and the sponsor travel company (Discova) is required and should be possible at any given time throughout an itinerary.
 
The overall schedule and destinations for travel and accommodations must still be specified. Within the pre-filed schedule, travellers are free to roam around and visit historical sites and other venues on their own.

 

Escorted tour

  1. A registered travel company (like Discova) or travel service arrangement company in Japan must sponsor visas.
  2. An itinerary must be fixed in advance.
  3. It is required to be escorted by guide/Tour leader throughout itinerary in Japan.
 

During an escorted itinerary, a tour guide does not need to be present during transfers by domestic flights and train rides (only for limited express, Shinkansen (Bullet train)).

Within the pre-filed schedule, travellers are free to roam around and visit historical sites and other venues on their own. As with an unescorted tour, communication (phone, mail, SNS, etc.) between tourists and the sponsor travel company (Discova) is required and should be possible at any given time. Two consecutive days of free time/travel are not permitted.

How to apply for a visa:

• Visa is required for all travellers into Japan.  Discova Japan will assist in issuing supporting documents, e.g. itinerary to facilitate the visa application.

For more information on visa application procedures, entry requirements and quarantine rules, please refer to the Japan Embassy websites in the clients’ respective countries of residence.

 

The standard steps for unescorted tours will look as following:

1. Travel Agent books international flights 

2. Travel Agent sends flights + request + customer phone/WhatsApp to Discova 

3. Travel Agent sends Discova the requested itinerary 

4. Discova book services (transfers/hotels) 

5. Discova prepares an itinerary with hotels listed on Discova letterhead in Japanese 

6. Discova issue ERFS and guarantee letter 

7. Discova send 5 and 6 to Travel Agent 

8. Customer (traveller) submits to nearest Japanese embassy (or can be online – depends on the location and we recommend checking with nearest embassy) 

9. Customer receives visa 

10. Customer sends copy of visa back to Travel Agent 

11. Travel Agent sends copy of visa to Discova and includes customers phone/WhatsApp information

 
  • Japan’s state of emergency ended on October 1, 2021. However, each district has encouraged people to ‘remain careful’. Essentially, mask-wearing and social distancing are advised.
  • The new guidelines state that people do not need to wear masks outdoors, except when having close conversations. During summer, people are encouraged to remove their masks to prevent heatstroke.
    Indoors, masks aren’t needed as long as people are maintaining a distance of 2 metres from others and there is little to no conversation. Masks are still required when visiting elderly people or anyone in hospital, during rush hour on public transport, and anywhere crowded.
  • Domestic flights are operating as normal.
  • Quarantine time for vaccinated foreign nationals that arrive in Japan for short business trips, study abroad, technical training and unvaccinated tourists (or vaccinated but from red countries) has been reduced to three days.
 

 
FAQ:

Q: I don’t have my customers’ (travellers’) flights booked yet, can Discova still work on my request? 

A: Yes, but we cannot issue EFRS or guarantee letter unless flights have been booked.


Q: Does this process cost me money? 

A: Not unless the customers have been denied their visa, in which case the service charge is 5000 JPY.


Q: So do customers have to apply for their own visa? 

A: Yes, but they cannot get a visa without our documentation.


Q: What if I booked some hotels for my customer via a bedbank? Can Discova still help? 

A: Yes, but we need to know what hotels those are and when they are booked for so we can put them onto the itinerary.


Q: Can Discova submit the visa application for me? 

A: No, customers must submit on their own, but they cannot do so until we have given them the documents. 


Q: How do I know where my customers should submit their application? 

A: Please contact the nearest Japanese embassy for instructions.


Q: Does everyone need to do this? 

A: Everyone travelling to Japan now needs a visa.


Q: What is a non-escorted tour? 

A: It means customers have some free days in their program without a guide.

🇱🇦 Laos

  • As of 9 May, Laos is officially fully open to international travellers.
  • A Lao Green Pass, Covid insurance and on-arrival test is no longer required. 
  • Fully-vaccinated travellers only need to provide their certificate of vaccination upon entering, and those who are not fully vaccinated only have to take a Covid ATK test within 48 hours before departure.
  • Private vehicles may be used to enter and exit Laos.
  • Citizens of countries that have signed a bilateral or unilateral visa waiver agreement with Laos can enter without applying for a visa.
    Citizens of countries that have not signed visa waiver agreements with Laos can apply for a visa at Lao embassies or consulates in foreign countries. Visitors can also apply for a visa online or on arrival at border crossings where such service is available.
  • Upon arrival, guests will need to download Laos’ contact tracing app, ‘LaoStaySafe’.  
  • Mask-wearing is mandatory in indooor and outdoor public spaces.
  • Laos has finished finished building a railway that will link Vientiane with Vang Vieng and Luang Prabang and up to the Chinese border. When travellers return, this will be a significant upgrade to getting around the country.

🇲🇾 Malaysia

  • As from 1 August, all travellers, regardless of vaccination status, may enter Malaysia without having to complete any Covid forms or tests, or undergo quarantine. Effectively, all Covid entry restrictions for international arrivals have been lifted.
  • Covid-19 travel insurance is no longer required for all travellers arriving from 1 May.
  • From 1 May, MySejahtera Check-in is no longer mandatory to enter premises or public spaces and entry into premises is allowed regardless of vaccination status.

During their stay:

  • From 1 May, wearing of masks is only mandatory in indoor settings, including public transport.

Further easing of restrictions will be updated here.

🇲🇽 Mexico

Mexico is open to travellers. There is no need to provide a negative PCR test or quarantine on arrival. 

  • Mask-wearing is no longer mandatory within the destination, but recommended in indoor public spaces. Masks are only required when passing through security on the way out of Cancun Airport.

🇲🇲 Myanmar

  • As from 15 May, e-Visa tourist applications will be allowed and accepted again. 
  • As from 17 April, Myanmar has allowed the resumption of international commercial flights/arrivals.
  • After a suspension of two years, Myanmar’s online e-Visa website is accepting applications again from 1 April. This applies to business visas only (no tourist visas yet). The official visa-application site is now live: https://evisa.moip.gov.mm/Business
  • For those entering under special circumstances, there is a 10-day quarantine, and flights must be purchased at least 6 days before departure.
  • Details regarding entry regulations for tourist visitors can be found here: Myanmar eVisa (Official Government Website) (moip.gov.mm). Visitors will need to provide proof of vaccination, a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test result issued at most 48 hours before departure, and an inbound Travel Accident Insurance Policy with COVID-19 coverage purchased from Myanma Insurance.
  • More details regarding the entry requirements for business travellers can be found here: https://evisa.moip.gov.mm/Home/Covid19Requirements
  • State of emergency declared until 2023.
  • Martial law has been declared in some townships.
  • There is a nightly curfew from 12am-4am.
  • Wearing of masks is compulsory in indoor and outdoor public spaces.

Since the military takeover, vaccination drives and travel arrangements have been significantly disrupted. We will update on the situation in Myanmar whenever we know more.

🇸🇬 Singapore

  • As from 1 April, all international fully-vaccinated travellers will be allowed to enter Singapore without having to apply for entry approvals or take designated VTL transport (plane or ferry).
  • As from 26 April, Singapore no longer requires fully vaccinated travellers (or non-vaccinated children under 12) to take a pre-departure PCR test before entering. Additionally, there is no quarantine requirement, and no test on arrival for fully vaccinated travellers (or non-vaccinated children under 12).
  • Non-fully vaccinated long-term pass holders and short-term visitors aged 13 and above travelling to Singapore will no longer need to apply for entry permit from August 29. These travellers will still be required to take a pre-departure test within two days before departure for Singapore, but no longer need to undergo quarantine or end-of-isolation testing. Short-term visitors must still provide proof of Covid-19 health insurance.
  • Pre-arrival requirements: fully vaccinated travellers must download TraceTogether app and register a profile. Three days before departure for Singapore, travellers must submit SG Arrival Card and e-health declaration via the free e-service on Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) website.
  • In-destination requirements: follow local laws – mask-wearing is optional in outdoor and most indoor settings but still mandatory on public transport and in healthcare facilities like hospitals and nursing homes.

🇹🇭 Thailand

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As from 1 July, Thailand has further simplified its entry requirements for travellers.

Travellers simply have to either:

  • Provide proof of vaccination.

or;

  • Provide proof of a negative RT-PCR or professional ATK test result taken within 72 hours of travel to Thailand.

From 01 July 2022, compulsory medical insurance is no longer a requirement. However, while it may no longer be mandatory, Discova recommends travellers to always have valid insurance policies while travelling.

Unvaccinated/not fully vaccinated travellers without a negative test result within 72 hours of travel are required to follow the public health instructions and guidelines as deemed appropriate by the Health Control Officer at the point of arrival. All expenses incurred will be the responsibility of the travellers.

Full details of the announcement from Tourism Authority of Thailand can be read here.

If you have any questions, we encourage you to reach out to our teams who will help and advise in any way they can.

  • Until 30th June 2022, all travellers, regardless of their mode of entry, have to apply for a Thailand Pass before travel.

  • From 01 July, Thailand Pass is no longer required, but either proof of vaccination or a negative RT-PCR or professional ATK test (taken within 72 hours of travel) is required.

  • Wearing of masks is now voluntary in public spaces. The Ministry of Public Health recommends that people still wear masks in crowded or poorly ventilated places. Private institutions (shops, transport, etc.) have the right to retain mask mandates, and government buildings are likely to retain the mask-wearing rule for now. The skytrain and underground have retained the rule.

Follow all the latest developments on the Tourism Authority Thailand (TAT) news page, a great source for updates.

🇻🇳 Vietnam 

Vietnam is now open for international tourists (as from March 15th). All travellers will be able to enter the country without quarantine and will be able to travel freely throughout the country regardless of vaccination status. No pre- or on-arrival Covid testing is required.  

The country also resumes 15-day visa exemption for 13 countries: Germany, UK, Northern Ireland, France, Italy, Spain, Russia, Japan, South Korea, Denmark, Norway, Finland and Belarus. Citizens from these countries may enter Vietnam visa-free for up to 15 days, regardless of passport type and entry purpose. This exemption is supposed to be in place from 15 March, 2022 until 14 March, 2025.

The country has also resumed e-visa for citizens from 80 countries and visa-on-arrival. 

As ever, if you have any further questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to our teams for the latest info.

Pre-arrival:

  • Travellers are no longer required to present COVID-19 vaccination or recent recovery certificates, but are advised to do so just in case it is requested.
 
  • Travellers must purchase medical insurance that covers Covid treatment to the value of 10 000 USD. Some countries may not provide this type of insurance, and should this be the case for your travellers, please contact Vietnam Sales & Reservations teams for further support. Discova Vietnam works with insurance suppliers and we can pre-buy this service for our partners. The estimated fee is 30 USD per person. 
 
 

On Arrival:

  • At the border gate, if a traveller shows symptoms of SARS-CoV-2 infection, they must immediately notify the health agency at the border gate to take medical measures as regulated.

  • Quarantine-free from day one, but in the first 10 days after entry, travellers should self-monitor their health and if any symptoms develop, ask for assistance from the nearest medical facilities.
 
  • While masks are not mandatory in most places, they may be compulsory in museums and special cultural sites/indoor spaces. Travellers are asked to frequently wear masks and disinfect their hands.
  • Your travellers passports can be scanned and sent to Discova together with detailed itinerary matching their international air tickets. Discova will apply for their visa-on-arrival on your behalf. The application process typically takes a week, but you can alternatively apply for an e-visa as normal.
  • Travellers can leave as soon as they receive negative results (if testing is required).
  • Travellers can either pre-book the airport transfer with Discova or make their own way on arrival.


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