The Sultanate of Oman has announced that it plans to lift the current travel ban from September 1, 2021.
The country has enforced strict coronavirus travel regulations during the pandemic, including a near-total entry ban for foreign nationals. Starting in September, Oman’s borders will be open to visitors from at least 21 different countries, as well as Omani citizens and foreign residents of the Sultanate.
There will still be certain rules that travelers will have to abide by. These include vaccination and testing requirements. These measures are in place to combat the spread of the highly transmissible Delta variant of COVID-19.
Travelers who require an Oman visa should make sure that they apply in good time before their trip, in addition to meeting the COVID-related entry requirements.
Improving Situation Leads to Fewer Travel Restrictions for Oman
The move to lift the travel ban comes as Oman’s COVID-19 situation continues to improve.
The latest wave in the Sultanate seems to be over. The number of daily cases has fallen sharply over summer. During the second half of June and the start of July, Oman was registering thousands of new cases daily, while the end of August has seen just a few hundred new infections per day.
August has averaged around 250 new cases per day, compared to around 880 per day in July and over 1,700 per day in June.
This improvement has come as Oman’s vaccination drive kicked into high gear. On June 15, 2021, only 10% of the population had received the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, while less than 4% were fully vaccinated. By August 23, 2021, 47% (2,336,980 people) had received the first dose, with 21% (1,042,882) being fully immunized.
With the fall in infections, Oman has lifted a nighttime curfew and will reopen travel in September. This marks the end of a travel ban that has been in place since April.
Traveling to Oman from September
Visitors from at least 21 countries will be allowed to enter the Sultanate of Oman from September 1, 2021. However, there are still certain rules that must be followed.
To travel to Oman from September, passengers will need the following:
- COVID-19 vaccination certificate
- Registration with the Tarassud+ app
- Printed registration form from Tarassud+
- PCR test either before travel or on arrival
Children under 18 are exempt from needing a vaccination or a PCR test.
The Oman visa policy remains in force, so all travelers who need a visa should ensure they have one before their trip.
COVID-19 Vaccination Needed for Oman
When the entry ban is lifted, one of the conditions for traveling to Oman is to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
According to Oman’s Supreme Committee, all adults (aged 18 and older) must have received all the necessary doses of a vaccine approved and recognized by the Sultanate. These include the following:
- Sputnik V
Travelers are required to bring a vaccination certificate proving that they received the last dose a minimum of 14 days before coming to Oman. It should include a QR code that can be scanned by border control officials.
The vaccination rule applies to all passengers, whether arriving in Oman by air, land, or sea.
The Supreme Committee added that vaccinations would also be required while staying in the country to enter government buildings and private sector establishments, such as:
- Shopping centers
- Business outlets
- Sports venues
- Venues for cultural events
Anyone who is medically unable to receive a vaccine is exempt.
PCR Test Needed to Avoid Quarantine in Oman
When Oman’s borders reopen, a pre-travel COVID-19 test will no longer be mandatory for travelers.
However, those who do not take one in advance will be tested on arrival and will have to self-isolate and wear a Tarassud+ bracelet until they receive the result. A positive result means 10 days of quarantine.
To avoid quarantine, travelers will still need to take a PCR test before making the journey.
In most cases, this must be done within 72 hours prior to departure. For long-haul flights, it may be taken within 96 hours beforehand.
Arrivals should show the negative test result with a QR code to a border control official when they land in Oman.