RAWALPINDI: The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has issued a fresh standard operating procedure (SOP) for the crew of direct flights from the United Kingdom (UK), South Africa and category ‘C’ countries. The authority has already imposed temporary restrictions on passengers coming from the UK and South Africa.
Under the new guideline, the flight crew will only be allowed to travel to Pakistan from the UK, South Africa and other countries categorised as ‘C’ if they hold a negative PCR test certification conducted 72 hours prior to their travel to the country.
The crew will be cleared expeditiously through relevant formalities related to arrival/departure by the authorities concerned via separate gates and counters at airport.
The crew will be exempted from testing on arrival. The exemption, however, will be applicable to those displaying no Covid-19 symptoms.
Under the fresh SOP, flight crew will directly be shifted to designated hotels on disembarkation at an airport.
They will observe a mandatory quarantine in their rooms at the hotels. Any interaction beyond authorised limits will be forbidden for them. Moreover, any crew member having symptoms of Covid-19 may be subjected to additional testing.
The CAA said compliance with all additional restrictions specified by the health authorities upon arrival in Pakistan will be mandatory for the crew of direct flights from the UK, South Africa and other countries categorised as ‘C’.
The CAA has exempted travelers from 23 countries categorised as ‘A’ from the requirement of Covid-19 testing before entry into Pakistan. However, the category ‘B’ countries require the test 96 hours before commencement of their travel to Pakistan.
Travelers from countries categorised as ‘C’ required a PCR test before traveling to Pakistan (96 hours) and would also need to take a mandatory RT-PCR test after landing in the country.
Published in Dawn, January 23rd, 2021