As of Wednesday, August 30, visitors from outside China will no longer have to show a negative COVID-19 test to be admitted.
The Associated Press reports that Wang Wenbin, a Foreign Ministry spokesman, said during a press conference Monday that lifting the requirement for coronavirus testing is an important step toward reopening China to the rest of the world.
The Asian country abolished quarantine regulations for Chinese nationals returning from abroad in January. The government not only increased the number of foreign flights but also expanded the list of countries whose travelers are allowed to visit.
As of last week, Delta Air Lines has added 10 weekly flights from Seattle and Detroit to Shanghai-Pudong International Airport, starting Oct. 29. The airline will begin four weekly flights from Los Angeles to PVG in March 2024; this route has not been served since before the pandemic.
After China’s “zero COVID” policy, which led to citywide lockdowns and lengthy quarantines for infected individuals, efforts to abolish COVID-related restrictions have persisted.
Previously, travelers were forced to lock themselves in government-approved hotels for weeks, hampering growth in the world’s second-largest economy, increasing unemployment, and sparking widespread protests against the forced closures.
Chinese officials indicated earlier this month that group excursions would be allowed once more for various nations, which would be the first time since the coronavirus pandemic. According to China’s Ministry of Culture and Tourism, group trips to Australia, Britain, Germany, Japan, South Korea, and the United States will be allowed, but not to Canada.