El Salvador officially reopened borders for international flights into the San Óscar Arnulfo Romero Airport on September 19, 2020.
Since closing their borders back on March 18th, El Salvador has been closed to all international arrivals with the exception of humanitarian, medevac or repatriation flights. On September 10th the government of El Salvador announced the country will finally reopen air borders and will allow international flights to resume on September 19th.
El Salvador gets around 1.7 million tourists every year, and with the borders being closed for the past 6 months, the nation is eager to restart their tourism industry as safely as possible.
Entry Requirements for El Salvador
Countries Allowed to Enter El Salvador
All nations that could visit El Salvador ‘pre-covid’ will be able to once again enter the country after September 19, 2020. Of course, all normal visa entry requirements will still be in effect.
86 nations can enter El Salvador visa-free
PCR Testing Required
A 72-hour PCR, LAMP or NAAT test is required for entry.
Children under 2 are exempt.
Now as of April 15, 2021, vaccinated travelers can bring proof of receiving their full treatment and will be exempt from the PCR testing requirement.
“According to the new provisions issued by the Ministry of Health, as of September 19, 2020, it is a requirement that all passengers entering El Salvador and of any nationality must present proof of PCR COVID-19 (Reaction in Polymerase Chain) with an original certificate from a laboratory giving a negative result, also that it was taken within a period of no more than 72 hours prior to the flight.”
It’s also mentioned in the above government document that any passenger who fails to produce the negative PCR test will considered inadmissible.
International Flights Resuming to El Salvador
On September 19 many direct international flights are restarting from the San Salvador (SAL) airport. Avianca, the largest airline that operates in the country, has already released some of their routes that will be immediately restarting:
Resuming between Sept 19 and Sept 22:
- Pan Pedro Sula
- Los Angeles
- New York
- San Francisco
#ElSalvador: A partir del 19 septiembre reanudaremos nuestra operación internacional desde El Salvador, siguiendo estrictos protocolos de bioseguridad. Conoce más aquí: https://t.co/RMXNrsFGUS. #AviancaSigueVolando pic.twitter.com/xya6TkqoQe
— Avianca Centroamérica (@AviancaCAM) September 10, 2020
Avianca has additional destinations scheduled for October like: Mexico City, Cancun, Dallas and more.
Avianca is reminding all passengers they must wear the mask throughout the entire travel day: from leaving home, at the airport, on the plane and until arrival at the final destination.
United, Spirit, and American Airlines are all scheduled to resume to El Salvador in September as well, with Delta and COPA coming back in October.
San Óscar Arnulfo Romero Airport
The San Óscar Arnulfo Romero Airport has already implemented heightened biosecurity and health protocols, like temperature screening for all passengers, mandatory face masks, sanitizing stations and enforcing social distancing.
Central and South America are slowly starting to reopen. Colombia has also just announced the reopening of their airspace for September 21, Guatemala on September 18, and more reopening news for Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, and Honduras.
Read More: See which countries in Latin American have reopened for tourism, and what companies are offering travel insurance that covers covid
Sources: elsalvador.com / CEPA.gob.sv / CEPA twitter / elMundo.sv / Avianca /
Disclaimer: El Salvador’s reopening news is ever-changing and being updated constantly. We do our best to keep this article up to date with all the latest information, but the decision to travel is ultimately your responsibility. Contact your consulate and/or local authorities to confirm your nationality’s entry and/or any changes to travel requirements before traveling.
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Originally published Sept 12, 2020 with updates