*Last updated on: December 8, 2020
COVID-19 Safety Measures at Hong Kong International Airport
As anyone who has flown recently will confirm, the COVID-19 pandemic has led to some major changes in the way airports operate, with every location taking slightly different countermeasures. If you're planning to fly to Hong Kong with CheapTickets.hk, this primer of COVID-19 safety measures at Hong Kong International Airport should tell you everything you need to know.
What airport measures are currently in place for travellers?
Hong Kong International Airport has been among the most proactive airports in the world when dealing with COVID-19. High-tech "sterlization robots" have been introduced to continually clean surfaces, while all arrivals must pass through the thorough "CleanTech" system, featuring temperature checks and disinfection measures. travellers from certain countries must provide evidence of a negative Covid test (including the UK and the USA), and the physical environment of the airport has been redesigned to ensure maximum distancing and safety for staff. So it's one of the safest places to travel in the world at the moment.
Do immigration or security checkpoints have new procedures?
Yes, everyone who touches down at Hong Kong International Airport must undergo temperature checks and pass through disinfection stations before they have their passports checked as normal. Restrictions are also in place to limit travel from areas with high Covid infections, and those coming from at risk nations must provide documentary evidence that they have received a negative test. Failure to present this evidence can result in fines or even imprisonment, and any test documents must come from an ISO 15189 certified testing institution. It is also mandatory to complete a Health & Quarantine Information Declaration before arriving. Passenger quarantine procedures at Hong Kong Airport can be found here. Additionally, testing for Covid is now compulsory (see below), and a 14 days quarantine is mandatory for all arrivals.
Are there any testing facilities at Hong Kong International Airport?
Yes. In August 2020, the airport set up a Temporary Specimen Collection center (TSCC), which collects saliva samples for Covid testing. The TSCC can be found on the Midfield Concourse of the main terminal, and every arrival is required to attend after passing through passport and customs control. After the test, travellers must remain at the TSCC until results are provided, at which point they can continue to baggage reclaim as normal. The whole process of Covid testing at Hong Kong Airport can take as long as 12 hours (comfortable seating is provided). So take any essentials with you such as toiletries or food and drink, and be prepared for a wait.
What are the social distancing and face covering policies at Hong Kong International?
Face masks must be worn within the airport site, and floor markings have been provided to make it easier to socially distance from other passengers. A distance of 1.5 meters should be maintained at all times.
Is there a clinic at Hong Kong International?
In addition to the TSCC, HKIA offers a medical center run by Raffles Medical Group. The center caters for everything from cuts and bruises to vaccinations, physiotherapy, mobilisation, and X-rays, and can be found at Departures Level 6. It is open 24/7, and appointments can be made by phoning +852 2261 0999.
How often is Hong Kong International Airport being cleaned?
HKIA has one of the best records for cleaning of any international airport. Early on in the Covid pandemic, the authorites introduced sanitisation robots which automatically clean all public spaces on a rolling basis. Antimicrobial coatings, an invisible coating which will kill germs, bacterias, and viruses, have been applied on high-touch surfaces of passenger facilities and is currently being conducted.
Are the shops and restaurants at HKIA open as normal during the pandemic?
No. Some eating places remain open for business, and arrivals can pick up snacks or essentials like medications, water and face masks from shops in the HKIA terminal. However, most shops and restaurants reduced their operations from March 2020 and remain closed. List of open shop and restaurants open in Hong Kong Airport.
Are there any other special guidelines or information for passengers to know about?
travellers should be aware that all arrivals must respect a mandatory 14 day quarantine period, and that details of onward travel must be provided to the local authorities. If a postiive test is received at the TSCC, further treatment and quarantine may be needed. It will also be necessary to wear face masks on all connecting transport, including buses and ferries to the mainland. So have a stock of masks ready for use at all times.
Are there any links to the government website for travellers?
Hong Kong's quarantine and testing rules are among the most complex in the world. More information on Hong Kong Governments arrival policy for inbound travellers is available. It's essential reading for anyone who is flying into Hong Kong with CheapTickets.hk so bookmark it, and please check the most updated information before your departure.