Airport ordeal: Oman Airports COVID-19 travel guidance
If you are traveling to, from, and through the airports of the Sultanate of Oman these days of the pandemic, you need to exercise extreme caution and take care to have all your travel and personal documents (like ticket, passport, medical test reports) in order before you embark on travel.
Those who have recently travelled say, it is important to have handy printouts of all documents, even if you have electronic copies saved in your smart phone. Also, ensure that you have adequate funds in your bank account to use your bank cards for payment towards the PCR test as well as for the bracelet on your return trip to Oman.
Since you have to spend long hours at the immigration when you arrive at your destination (and when you return to Oman), make sure to have proper meals before your set out (and carry some packed food along, to take care of long waits) though some airlines provide food in flight. Also, make sure not to exceed the allowed luggage weight limit as some airlines do not allow exceeding by even one kilogramme.
Since formalities of checking PCR tests, etc are carried out everywhere, it might take between 4-6 hours to get out of the airport once you arrive. So, make sure to have all documents in order to cut out unnecessary delays, and be mentally as well as physically prepared for the ordeal. And remember, no meeters/greeters are allowed in the airport terminal building.
Travelers Arriving in Oman
The requirements for entering the Sultanate through Oman Airports as featured in the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) Circular, effective December 29, 2020, is as follows:
- All travelers arriving in Oman are required to undergo a PCR test at least 72-hours before their scheduled arrival and to present a certified medical certificate of a negative COVID-19 test result.
- Travelers are required to pre-book the PCR test through https://covid19.emushrif.om/traveler/travel, pay RO25 test fee, and download (Tarrasud+) application prior to arrival in the Sultanate.
- All travelers arriving in Oman from any country will be required to undergo another COVID-19 PCR test on arrival, wear Tarrasud+ bracelet, and isolate for 7 days.
- At the end of 7 days, travelers are required to undergo a new PCR test on the 8th day and if the test result is negative, the isolation period will end.
- Test results will be available within 24 hours.
- The test report can be viewed and printed electronically on https://covid19.emushrif.om
- Travelers arriving in Oman for a period shorter than 7 days are no longer exempt from the isolation requirements.
- Airlines are required to ensure that all passengers are adhering to the health requirements of the Sultanate of Oman prior to departure.
- GCC citizens, residents with valid residency permits, and travelers with a valid visa are allowed to enter the Sultanate without prior approval.
- All travelers arriving to the Sultanate of Oman are required to have international health insurance covering the cost of COVID-19 treatment valid for one month, except for citizens, GCC nationals, and passengers with free treatment card.
- Children below 15 years old are exempt from the PCR test and Tarrasud+ bracelet requirements.
- Diplomats working at foreign embassies accredited to the sultanate of Oman and diplomats visiting the Sultanate are exempted from COVID-19 PCR test. Tarassud+ and the bracelet, however, are subject to a seven-day quarantine.
- Aircraft crew are exempt from the PCR test, Tarrasud+ bracelet requirements, the isolation requirements, and are subject to the precautionary measures issued by the Ministry of Health.
- All other previously issued requirements for entry in the Sultanate of Oman remain in force, in as much as they do not contradict with the above newly issued requirements.
- The Sultanate of Oman has announced a new visa policy exempting tourists from 103 countries from entry visa and providing a 10-day visa on arrival, subject to presenting a valid health insurance, return ticket, and a hotel booking confirmation upon arrival. Tourists who exceed the permitted stay will face an overstaying penalty.
- To check the list of countries whose nationals are exempt from entry visa, please visit: https://www.omanair.com/gbl/ar/oman-welcomes-the-world
Travelers departing from Oman
Before booking a flight, passengers must consider the following requirements:
- Omani citizens and residents can travel abroad without pre-approval.
- Omani citizens shall have health insurance covering COVID-19 valid in the country they are traveling to.
- Check the latest COVID-19 travel and testing requirements for your destination.
- Consider online check-in, where possible, prior to arrival at the airport to avoid face-to-face contact at the airport
- Travelers need to be at the airport at least 3 hours before the official time of departure or 4 hours at most.
- Never travel if you display coronavirus symptoms.
- Thermal screening takes place at the airport to identify passengers with fever. If you have a temperature above 38 degrees Celsius or higher, you will be asked to undertake a COVID-19 PCR test.
- If required, PCR tests can be done at the Airport Drive-through and Walk-in facilities, located in P5 car park in Muscat and at the Cargo terminal in Salalah (follow the road signs).
- The cost of the PCR test is RO19.
- Test results will be available within 24 hours.
- The test report is available electronically on https://covid19.emushrif.om
Oman Airports has implemented protective measures at the terminal building and at security checkpoints to make the travel procedures and screening process safer for our passengers and employees. Travelers are reminded to observe the following travel, safety, and health measures:
- You must have a valid air ticket to be allowed into the airport terminal building
- Do not travel if you feel sick or have a fever.
- Wear a face mask at all times while at the airport and during your trip. Face masks must be changed every 4 hours, so please bring enough for your journey
- Maintain social distancing of at least 1.5 meters inside the airport terminal.
- Check-in online to avoid face-to-face contact at the airport.
- Avoid carrying your phone or other items in your hands when going through the check-in process and security checkpoints.
- Clean and disinfect touched objects and surfaces, including mobile phones.
- Wash your hands or use a hand sanitiser frequently.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a paper towel cover or a flexed elbow when sneezing or coughing, even when wearing a mask.
- Avoid unnecessary contact with others, including handshaking and other greeting gestures.
- Meeters and greeters are not allowed into the airport terminal, except for individuals accompanying passengers with special needs (one accompanying individual only).