Flight ban under review

March 23, 2022

(To watch the full press conference with sign language interpretation, click here.)


The Government is aware that the number of flights arriving in Hong Kong may be affected by the place-specific flight suspension mechanism in place and is finding a solution to the problem, Chief Executive Carrie Lam said today.


It announced on March 21 that the flight suspension on nine countries including Australia, Canada, France, India, Pakistan, the Philippines, the UK, the USA and Nepal would be lifted from April 1.


At a press conference this morning, Mrs Lam stressed that this latest decision is not a relaxation of border control measures as only fully vaccinated Hong Kong residents will be allowed to board a flight for Hong Kong and they will be subject to very stringent quarantine requirements.


She also said that she has received a lot of feedback on lifting the flight ban.


One is whether there will be enough flights to come back to Hong Kong because we still have the flight-specific suspension mechanism in place.


That is if an inbound flight brings in a certain number of COVID-19 positive cases upon arrival, then they will not be allowed to fly again for a period of two weeks. This is going to limit the number of flights inbound.


I can only say that we know the problem and we are looking at how we could resolve this without compromising our border control measures.”


Noting that there are also concerns about the availability of designated quarantine hotel (DQH) rooms for inbound travellers, the Chief Executive said the Government is working hard to encourage more hotels to turn into DQHs.


There are currently 25 DQHs in the city, providing about 6,500 rooms, she added.

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