Johannesburg, 26 November 2021 – On Friday morning the Dutch government announced that South Africa, Lesotho, Eswatini, Botswana, Namibia and Zimbabwe have been flagged as a “very-high-risk area where there is a COVID-variant of concern”, Omicron. This means passengers flying KLM from South Africa to the Netherlands will only be permitted to board if they comply with the entry restrictions imposed by the Dutch government.
The entry ban does not apply for the repatriation of people carrying Dutch passports, EU citizens, Schengen residents, medical emergency staff, ships’ crew, airline staff and people travelling under exceptional circumstances, such as family emergencies.
Passengers in the above exceptional categories will have to comply with the following test requirements in order to travel:
- A negative PCR/NAAT test that is less than 24 hours old when going on board and less than 48 hours old when arriving the Netherlands, or a negative PCR/NAAT test that is less than 48 hours old before departure to the Netherlands, as well as a negative rapid test that is less than 24 hours old when boarding the flight;
- A compulsory 10-day quarantine on arrival in the Netherlands, reduced to five days if a negative test is obtained after five days via the GGD public health authorities in the Netherlands.
Effect of entry ban on KLM flights
KLM says it will continue to fly to South Africa, operating its flights from Johannesburg and Cape Town to Amsterdam in compliance with the stricter protocol.
“KLM is taking the situation very seriously and will continue to prioritise the safety of passengers and crew. KLM will therefore impose strict on-board safety requirements for passengers and crew. This protocol will be in line with the requirements issued by the respective governments,” KLM said in a statement.
On Friday morning two KLM flights from Cape Town and Johannesburg landed at Schiphol. All passengers were ushered off these flights to a special location at Schiphol where they are being tested. The disembarking and testing procedure is the responsibility of the GGD public health authorities.
KLM said passengers who wish to rebook their flight, due to the prevailing circumstances, are welcome to do so in accordance with the flexible booking conditions that already apply.