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  • Alfy K Nsamba

Rwanda safari COVID-19 update - October 2021

As part of the Government of Rwanda’s measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the

following is mandatory upon entry into Rwanda as of 14th October 2021:


Arrivals

a. All travellers arriving in Rwanda must present a negative COVID-19 certificate. The only accepted test is a SARS-CoV 2 Real Time Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) performed within 72 hours prior to departure (meaning travellers must be tested and get results within 3 days of their first flight). Other tests, such as Rapid Diagnostics Tests (RDTs), are not accepted. Please note that COVID-19 test is not mandatory for accompanied children under 5 years.

b. Fully vaccinated travellers and children below 18 years will no longer be required to quarantine

at designated hotels upon arrival but will be required to self-quarantine and wait for the results at

home or at booked hotel. Arriving travellers must present a valid vaccination certificate showing

their full vaccination status to be eligible for this exception.

c. All travellers arriving or transiting in Rwanda must complete the passenger locator form (PLF) and upload the COVID-19 test certificate and vaccine certificate (if applicable) before heading to the airport. The passenger locator form is available via www.rbc.gov.rw.

d. All travellers who are not vaccinated transiting for more than 12 hours through Rwanda will be screened upon entry and take a second RT-PCR test on arrival. Sample collection will be conducted at the airport upon arrival and passenger will wait for the results at the designated transit hotel. The COVID-19 Test Results for transiting passengers for more than 12 hours will be fast-tracked so that passengers can get the results before their next flight.

e. All travellers transiting/connecting who are not leaving the airport and are in transit for less than 12 hours will be screened upon entry and not required to take a second test . This is not applicable for passengers transiting by land border. In this case, passengers will be tested using RT-PCR Test

and wait for the results at the designated transit hotels before proceeding.

f. All travellers will be tested for COVID-19 upon arrival at the airport and the payment of 60 USD (50USD for covid-19 test and 10USD for specific logistics to the airport) will be done as indicated in the passenger locator form. For passengers who opt for a cash payment at arrival, change will be given in local currency (Rwf). Travellers who do not use the payment methods in the Passenger Locator Form may be

required to pay again at arrival and claim a refund for any previous payment made.

g. Travellers who have not received full vaccination will be required to wait 24 hours in a designated transit hotel while waiting for their COVID-19 test results taken upon arrival.

h. All COVID-19 prevention measures announced by the Ministry of Health must be respected during waiting period (Link of the designated hotels).

i. The Government of Rwanda has negotiated special rates at designated transit hotels for the 24 hours waiting period. Should a guest wish to remain in the hotel after receiving negative test results, they are welcome to extend their stay at the hotel’s applicable rates.


Designated Hotels / At home

Once at the hotel or at home, the process is as following:

1. Test results will be checked on RBC website of covid-19 results portal by using phone number

entered while filling Passenger Locator Form and Unique code received when submitted Passenger

Locator Form prior to departures or by SMS and/or email, and the turnaround time for results is 24hrs from the time a sample is collected. If the results are not out and you are beyond 24 hours, please contact the hotel reception or RBC Medical Team on Duty at Airport 24/7: (+250) 781415724 for quick follow up.

2. If a traveler test positive for COVID-19 (even if asymptomatic) while in Rwanda, they will be treated as indicated in the National Covid-19 Management Guidelines until they have fully recovered, at their own cost. All travellers are encouraged to have international travel insurance.


Departure

• All travellers departing from Rwanda must test negative for COVID-19. The only accepted test is a SARSCoV 2 Real Time Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) performed within 72 hours before departure performed by the Rwanda Biomedical Center/National Reference Laboratory, Provincial or District Hospitals. Other tests, such as Rapid Diagnostics Tests (RDTs), are not accepted. COVID-19 test is not mandatory for accompanied children under 5 years. All travellers are encouraged to book and pay for their tests at least 2 days prior to departure through the online platform available on www.rbc.gov.rw

• Travellers are advised to check with airlines about the COVID-19 requirements of the final destination and/or transit countries.

• Travellers are not allowed to go to the airport without negative COVID-19 PCR test results, if the

results are not yet out within 48 hours as mentioned above, please contact LAB HELP DESK on (+250) 787243836 or (+250) 787793446 or (+250) 784026239.

• If travellers test results are positive for COVID-19 (even if asymptomatic) while in Rwanda, they will be treated as indicated in the National Covid-19 Management Guidelines until they have fully recovered, at their own cost. All travellers are encouraged to have international travel insurance.


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