Good news, everyone! The K-pop capital of the world is now open to all vaccinated tourists.
The South Korean government has just announced that they are ending the mandatory 7-day quarantine for all fully vaccinated travellers coming into the country. This is excellent news for those of us who have been itching to travel again and explore South Korea. So pack your bags and get ready for an amazing (and safe) trip to one of the most fascinating countries in the world!
From 1 April 2022, fully vaccinated leisure travellers to South Korea can freely enter the country and explore all that it has to offer without suffering through the mandatory seven-day quarantine.
South Korea is a country filled with culture, natural beauty, and delicious food. There are so many things to see and do in this fantastic country, so be sure to add it to your travel bucket list!
This new relaxation of rules applies to all countries except for visitors from Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Ukraine and Myanmar. The excluded list of countries still need to serve a seven-day quarantine.
Some Requirements Still In Place in South Korea
Leisure travellers will still need to have a negative PCR test result 48 hours before departure with a rapid test (also called ART, RAT or lateral flow test) at the airport upon arrival. The authorities will also require vaccination certification.
It remains mandatory to wear face masks at indoor and outdoor public places. In addition, social distancing measures are in place with curfew limits in cinemas, karaoke rooms, bathhouses and restaurants. However, these may be relaxed further over the coming few weeks.
Earlier this year, the quarantine period of 10 days was reduced to 7 days. The government is now doing away with this requirement by 1 April, joining many other countries in taking similar steps.
South Korea had a so-called air bubble with Singapore and Saipan, which exempted travellers from quarantine. The project aimed to boost tourism, but it became clear that the documentation and rules were too much for tourists. They couldn’t enjoy their trip because they had so many worries about what would happen if something went wrong.
Boost to the Airlines
These new rules are a massive boost for Incheon International Airport and the airlines. Asiana Airlines is resuming its flights to Japan, with more flights being added to multiple spots including Narita, Osaka and Fukuoka. After two years, the airlines also plan to reopen its popular Incheon to Hawaii route. Jeju Air and Jin Air also plan to dramatically ramp up their flights to the region.
Perfect Season to Start Visiting South Korea
The South Korean government has opened its borders just in time for travellers to enjoy the spring season. This year, blossom-viewing parties and other festivities will be centre stage as people celebrate this beautiful natural symbol of new beginnings with family members and friends.
The cherry trees will be in full bloom from late March to early April, so plan your trip accordingly! In South Korea, the Forsythias (Sunny Smiles of Springtime), Azaleas (Springtime Joy in the Mountains) and Cherry Blossom are symbols of the arrival of spring. They all come to life after spending their long winter asleep.
The Busan Lotus Lantern Festival will be taking place from 22 Apr to 8 May. The event celebrates Buddha’s birthday, and the lotus lanterns on display offer a magnificent sight in their shapes vary or size, some can even grow over 100ft tall.
South Korea is a beautiful country with much to offer tourists. With the end of mandatory quarantines, it is now easier than ever for leisure travellers to visit and enjoy all that the country has to offer. ◼
© This article was first published online in Mar 2022 – World Travel Magazine.