Chile has removed the mandatory five day quarantine for international visitors. The regulation had been in place since the country opened its borders on October 1st.
It joins several other South American countries in fully opening its borders, in the move announced in October.
Travelers to the South American country will now be required to show evidence of full COVID-19 vaccination before traveling. A medical questionnaire is also required, along with travel insurance showing a minimum of $30,000 coverage. Upon arrival in Chile, travelers will have 72 hours to undergo a PCR test confirming a negative result.
Proof of vaccination is to be in the form of “Mobility Pass” (Pase de Movibilidad). American travelers are advised to organize their pass well in advance of their date of departure. Processing of the pass may take up to 2 weeks. According to government statements, foreigners arriving without a valid Mobility Pass may be subject to a seven day quarantine.
Chile is reporting 88% of the population has now been fully vaccinated. Given the high vaccination rate of its citizens, the Chilean government is confident in further relaxing its entry requirements and restoring its tourism economy.
As with many other countries, Chile’s borders closed twice during the pandemic: once in March 2020, and again in November 2021 after the emergence of the Delta variant.
The timing of the new regulations is welcomed by the tourist sector in Chile, as the summer season is typically the most popular visiting period for international tourists to the country. With nations like the UK removing South American countries from red lists, and the relaxation of regulations in the US, the year end and beyond could prove a successful one.
Pre-COVID, Chile was the third most visited country in South America after Brazil and Argentina. United States citizens are the most frequent visitors to the country outside of South America.
Danny Callaghan, the chief executive of the Latin American Travel Association said,
“This iconic destination has one of the best Covid programs in the world, and I’m pleased that they are now seeing the benefits of tourism returning.
“This also bodes well for the Antarctic cruise season, with many vessels set to depart from Chile. I see this as the beginning of a long-awaited recovery for the wider region.”
The Antarctic cruise industry is one of many sectors in the country hoping to return to normal in the coming months. But the entire country isn’t fully behind the measures.
Just last week, the residents of Easter Island, the iconic UNESCO site 2000 miles from mainland Chile, voted against reopening the island to visitors.
Its isolation has allowed the residents to enjoy a COVID free life for over a year. However, as a tourist based economy, local governments and those on the mainland intend for it to open on January 1st. The vote is non-binding, and can be overruled by authorities.
Recommendations remain in place for social distancing and wearing of masks indoors.
All travelers to Chile, and any other country, should keep informed of any potential changes to regulations, as these are subject to COVID-19 trends.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com