Happy New Year everyone! Wow 2022 - sounds almost like we should be zooming around in flying cars, and taking weekend trips to the moon already - but thank goodness, not quite there yet. May 2022 be kind to you and your loved ones.
We had quite the "adventure" during the holidays. Just as I thought everyone is set for their island holidays, and visiting friends and family in Europe & USA, and planning to settle in for a for a peaceful festive season, all hell broke loose, with the travel regulations changing by the minute, due to the new Omicron variant and subsequent knee-jerk reactions by countries worldwide. I am pleased to say the hysteria seems to have settled though, with travel regulations being more favourable again for Southern Africa travellers.
Most countries, including our beloved island holiday destinations, Mauritius & Maldives, (Zanzibar never closed for us) most of Europe and UK, and if course USA, have removed Namibia & South Africa from so called red lists. We are still awaiting news of Dubai and some Far East/Asian countries . Effectively, as things stand right now, if you are fully vaccinated, the world is your oyster (well almost). For the unvaccinated, a few extra regulations and hoops to jump through and some no-go countries for you.
On the 15th January, the Trusted Travel System regulation for travel to Namibia will be implemented It is mandatory for all travellers to upload their PCR Tests to the Trusted Travel System / Global Haven websites. I have designed an easy to use, step by step document for your reference. Hopefully this will help you with the process. I promise it looks more daunting than what it really is. It is quite easy to navigate and most labs that have subscribed to the TTS send you the link to register anyway. So first thing first is go for the PCR Test. Give them the e-mail address that you will register on the system with. This is important. Must always use the same e-mail address and then it's easy from there. Also remember that if you cannot find a Panabios / Trusted Travel lab in the area where you are, you can still go to any approved lab in your country of departure to Namibia( Test must have a QR Code - next to being tested negative of course) Once you have your Test result you can then upload to the globalhaven.org website. This too is accepted.
Some really good news for those Namibians/Residents still testing positive in SA , after their 10-days isolation, FlyNamibia will accommodate you on their flights back to Namibia from Cape Town. I have received written notification in this regard. You will need to present the following ; Original PCR positive test, before isolation started, De-isolation certificate/doctor’s letter stating 10-day isolation has been completed, A PCR test (positive or negative), not older than 72-hours, will be required before departure. Thank you FlyNamibia! I have also been in touch with Airlink, who has indicated that they too will assist under certain circumstances. I have unfortunately not received anything in writing as yet from them. Best is to get into contact with us at the office, and we will do the rest.
On the travel front, 2022 does look promising. I have no doubt that Government Restrictions around the world, due to Covid-19 or finding some frozen vials labeled "Smallpox" in a freezer in a vaccine research facility ( I kid you not ), will continue to affect travel, but I have faith in the powers that be, to carefully re-consider travel bans and react to the facts rather than fear. So this year, I am optimistic, that you can add travel, to your to-do list again. Dust off that passport, check if it is still valid and make that booking. Please continue to stay safe, wear your mask, Test Negative, Get Vaccinated and Safe Travels ! with best wishes Chantell van den Heever Founding Agency Owner
(I.A.T.A. / U.F.T.A.A. DipTT (Mgt))