Hong Kong lifts quarantine for foreigners but maintains strict rules

Audio 01:22

Medical staff wearing protective gear direct arriving passengers to quarantine hotels at Hong Kong International Airport (illustrative image).

AP - Kin Cheung

Text by: RFI Follow

1 min

Is this the end of restrictions and the “zero Covid” policy in Hong Kong?

Not quite.

Since Monday and after two and a half years of almost total closure, the former British colony has once again welcomed foreigners, without locking them up for several days in hotel rooms.

But those who arrive are however not free of their movements and must respect strict rules, as our reporter saw when landing at Hong Kong airport.


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With our special correspondent in Hong Kong,

Heike Schmidt

In the empty corridors of the airport, still deserted by most airlines, arriving passengers come across an armada of blue blouses. 

The agents, protected by a mask, a visor and surgical gloves, give a number to each one.

Eyes darkened by the night flight, the arrivals drag their suitcases to one of the cabins to carry out the first of eleven Covid tests.

Once at the hotel, beware of those whose body temperature exceeds 36.8.

A security guard watches over the grain: " 

36.8 is still ok, but at 36.9, you have a problem


This young Filipino passes without incident, he is delighted.


Yes, with the quarantine lifted, you no longer have to stay in solitary confinement for three days! 


Finally, the foreigners are back, rejoices Anson, reception manager of a large hotel in Central, the business district.


You see, we have more check-ins and check-outs, it will take a little more time, but here we already have 20% more customers, I would say.


For three days, new arrivals are prohibited from frequenting bars, cafes and restaurants.

Those who try to enter discreetly are quickly expelled.

With any luck, the yellow QR code should turn blue on day 4. 


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  • hong kong

  • China