Monday, 18 January 2021

Covid-19 Update: Seychelles Becomes More Accessible

Seychelles becomes more accessible - Welcomes all vaccinated visitors

In an announcement widely welcomed by the tourism industry, the Indian Ocean archipelago has reviewed its entry requirements for visitors, making the destination immediately more accessible to travellers that have received both doses of the covid-19 vaccine. The review marks part of the restart of the island nation's tourism activities for 2021 and beyond.  

The announcement was made 
on Thursday, January 14, 2021 by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Tourism, Mr. Sylvestre Radegonde, during a joint press conference with his counterpart from the Ministry of Health, Mrs. Peggy Vidot. This follows the recent launch of the country's national immunisation campaign, which is expected to vaccinate roughly 70% of the local adult population by mid-March 2021. 

The new measures are to be implemented in two phases:

1) With immediate effect: 

Seychelles will open its borders to vaccinated visitors from any part of the world.

Vaccinated Visitors:
Visitors must be able to show that they have received two doses of an approved* covid-19 vaccine. They can only travel two weeks after they have received their second dose of the vaccine. Visitors must submit an authentic certificate from their national health authority as proof of 
covid-19 vaccination, together with a negative PCR test certificate obtained less than 72 hours prior to travelling to Seychelles. Infants and children may not be required to be vaccinated. However they will need to have a negative covid-19 PCR certificate taken not less than 72 hours before travel.

Vaccinated visitors may only stay in establishments or liveaboards that have been certified by the Public Health Authority. They will be allowed free movement but must follow all health protocols in place at their respective tourism accommodation/liveaboards. Vaccinated visitors will not be subjected to surveillance PCR test (usually done on the 6th day) once in Seychelles, however, their airline or final destination may require it.

Non-Vaccinated Visitors:
Visitors from countries that are currently permitted entry to Seychelles still need to submit a negative PCR test certificate obtained less than 72 hours (Category 1) / 48 hours (Category 2) prior to travel to Seychelles.

Visitors may only stay in establishments or liveaboards that have been certified by the Public Health Authority. Upon arrival in Seychelles, visitors must stay in their first tourism accommodation/live aboard for 10 days** before leaving the tourism accommodation compound/live aboard.

Entry to Seychelles is still restricted to visitors that have not been fully vaccinated or are not travelling from a permitted country or via private jet. These measures will be in force until mid-March, when Seychelles is expected to have vaccinated the majority of its adult population. Strict health and safety measures, such as diligent sanitization, social distancing and wearing a mask will still apply.

2) Mid-March Onwards: 

Once the majority of the adult population in Seychelles has been vaccinated, the country will open its borders to all visitors - regardless of whether or not they have been vaccinated. All visitors will be required to submit a negative PCR test certificate, obtained less than 72 hours prior to travel.

Visitors are requested to continue to abide by the existing health measures (e.g. wearing of face masks, social distancing, etc) which will remain applicable as per the travel advisory published on the Department of Tourism's website. Similarly, all tourism operators will still be required to follow their existing covid-19 standard operating procedures and protocols.

More details about the new measures will be published in the Seychelles Travel Advisory in the coming days.

Submitted by the Seychelles Tourism Board
*The vaccine administered must be recognised by the Seychelles Public Health Authority. Certification for both vaccines and PCR tests must be submitted online via the Health Authorisation tool. 

**There is no minimum length of stay in place. Visitors staying in Seychelles for less than 6 days will not be subjected to surveillance PCR test, but must stay at a single accommodation establishment. Visitors staying Seychelles for less than 10 days will be required to take a surveillance PCR test on their 6th day and must stay at a single accommodation establishment. After 10 days (provided the result of their surveillance PCR test is negative) visitors are free to move to another accommodation establishment or island.