Thu, 06 May 2021

Israel to accept vaccinated tourists from May 23

14 Apr 2021, 04:44 GMT+10

JERUSALEM, April 13 (Xinhua) -- Israel will allow vaccinated tourist groups to enter the country from May 23, officials said on Tuesday.

After about a year since Israel closed to tourists, the Tourism Ministry and Health Ministry drafted an outline for the reopening of the industry, according to a joint statement.

In the first stage, a limited number of groups could start to arrive in the country, and individual travelers will be allowed into Israel in the second stage, the ministries said.

All visitors will be required to present a negative PCR test before boarding the flight to Israel, and a serological test proving their vaccination upon arrival at the Ben Gurion International Airport outside Tel Aviv.

"Discussions will continue with various countries for consensus on vaccine-certificate validation, so as to cancel the need for the serological test," the statement read.

Tourism Minister Orit Farkash-Hacohen said she was hopeful the move will revive the country's tourism industry, noting that "only opening the skies for international tourism will truly revive the tourism industry."

Israel closed its borders in March 2020. The country launched a vaccination rollout this February aiming to vaccinate its entire adult population. Recent figures released by the health ministry show that some 5 million of Israel's 9.3 million population have received both shots.

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