The Kingdom of Tonga will reopen its borders on August 1, after more than two years of closure due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Tonga’s Prime Minister Siaosi Sovaleni made the announcement on Friday after meeting with his cabinet earlier in the day.
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A limited number of international flights would be allowed into Fua’amotu International Airport in Nuku’alofa as travel to the country resumed.
Sovaleni said all travellers entering Tonga must comply with all requirements and conditions that have been approved in their open border policy framework.
“While we are progressively opening the borders we must emphasise that compliance with the conditions is important to ensuring the safety of all travellers and our people,” he said.
There will be two flights a week from New Zealand between August 1 and August 28, which will then increase to three flights per week from August 29 to October 31.
New Zealand flights will increase to six per week after that.
Two flights from Fiji will be allowed from August 1 to October 31, while flights from Australia will continue with one per week.
A review of Tonga’s borders will take place again in September.
The review will look at the number of flights and cruise lines into the Pacific nation.
All travellers aged over 12 years will be required to be fully vaccinated, with two doses of the Covid-19 vaccine, before they can gain entry into Tonga.
Negative rapid antigen tests must be produced within 24 hours of departure.
Visitors must also confirm hotel bookings or accommodation to Tonga authorities 48 hours before departure, and again at check-in.
Sovaleni said all foreign visitors must have travel insurance.
Upon arrival, visitors must wear masks at the airport and follow national Covid-19 restrictions in place.
A Health Arrival Declaration Form is mandatory upon arrival, and visitors will be encouraged to download the Tonga ‘Atautolu contact tracing app.
Tonga citizens who have not completed their vaccination, but wish to return to Tonga must pay for a five-day quarantine stay at a government-approved facility.
A supervised PCR test will be required between day 3 to day 5 of quarantine for quarantined passengers.
Passengers who return positive results will need to self-isolate at home for five days from the date they tested positive.
Tonga joins Samoa and the Federated States of Micronesia in reopening borders on August 1.