Kathmandu, January 20
Nepal Tourism Board, a public-private partnership body formed to promote tourism in the country, has objected to the health protocol the government has imposed on foreign tourists considering the Covid-19 risk.
The board says the existing protocol tarnished Nepal’s image in the international market and urges the government to relax provisions.
The board says international media have begun to give a message that Nepal is not open yet for tourism, stating revising the protocol is a must to revive the country’s tourism sector, worst hit by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The board says it has made this conclusion after a meeting with stakeholders earlier this week.
Mainly, the board has proposed the following provisions in revising the protocol:
- On-arrival visa service should resume.
- The PCR test requirement should be waived for the children below five years of age whereas others should submit a report certifying they are coronavirus negative from a test done 16 hours before they began the journey.
- Tourists from other countries except India should undergo a PCR test after arriving in Nepal, and testing negative in it should allow them to travel freely without quarantine. Provisions for Indian nationals should be as agreed between the two governments while launching the Air Bubble service.
- All Nepal-India border points should open, letting people enter the country by submitting a PCR negative report from a test within the last 96 hours.
- Those vaccinated against Covid-19 should not submit any test report, neither should they quarantine and test themselves in Nepal.
- Travel insurance should be compulsory.