Partial Opening of Airspace for Commercial Flights
As of Monday, November 23, 2020, the Surinamese airspace will be partially opened for commercial flights on the Mid-Atlantic route (Amsterdam-Paramaribo, vice versa) and for pre-arranged regional flights. As of the aforementioned date, airlines are allowed to operate commercial flights in a regulated and controlled manner. This is bound to the number of passengers per flight per week as determined by the authorities.
As of this date, travelers can book their tickets directly through travel agents or airline companies. The permission of the Consular Affairs Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, International Business and International Cooperation (BIBIS) for residents and non-residents will lapse.
Passengers who need Visa must follow the normal E-visa and E-tourist card procedure via the VFS-Global website https://suriname.vfsevisa.com/suriname/online/home/index
The applicable conditions for visitors remain unchanged. Passengers must present the following documents before admission on the flights:
– A negative RT PCR test, no older than 72-120 hours)
(PLEASE NOTE: no GGD test results for passengers from The Netherlands, no quick test results, or antibody test results). Positive ELISA test results, for those who have already been positive, not older than 6 months
– A confirmed accommodation booking (no reservation) of at least 10 days at a registered SHATA hotel or accommodation. Home quarantine requires a written permission from the Ministry of Health.
– Non-residents must have and submit travel insurance with COVID-19 coverage.
Without these 3 requirements, the airline companies will not allow passengers on the flights.
Quarantine in your own accommodation is possible. For this, the traveler will have to state reasons for choosing quarantine at home. When making the request, the traveler will have to indicate who will act as guarantor. The guarantor should be aware that he or she will be held jointly liable if the traveler does not comply with the rules.
Permission for home quarantine is given exclusively by the Minister of Public Health or the director of the Public Health Service (BOG). Application for this facility must be made at least ten 10 working days before scheduled departure via the email address: email@example.com.
Home quarantine will only be possible with the written permission of the aforementioned authorities. At the Johan Adolf Pengel Airport (Zanderij), after arrival, no permission will be granted for home quarantine! Collectors of travelers are therefore not allowed to go to the airport.
After the permission has been obtained, the traveler will have to approach a security company for the (physical) security at the indicated quarantine address. The costs for security are at the expense of the traveler.
BOG registration obligation
The email address of BOG, firstname.lastname@example.org, has a double function.
On the one hand, this address must be used to request permission for home quarantine, on the other hand, this address functions as an information platform for the authorities to prepare for incoming travelers.
Every traveler must email the negative RT PCR test, the confirmation of the SHATA accommodation or the statement from the Ministry of Health in case of home quarantine is permitted, and the travel insurance (for non-residents), not later than 72 hours before departure via email@example.com
Travelers who are traveling due to a death or a visit to a seriously ill family member, should also report via firstname.lastname@example.org
Transport from the airport
Transport from the airport to the accommodation will also be controlled. In case of quarantine in a SHATA accommodation, this will be provided by the SHATA accommodation. In case of home quarantine, the traveler can only be picked up by a taxi company registered with the Airport Management.
In both cases, the costs are borne by the traveler.
Furthermore, travelers must comply with all COVID-19 measures applicable in the country. These include, among others:
– Mandatory putting on/ wearing of a mouth/nose covering in all public places and in public transport (shops, banks, take-away restaurants, hairdressers, etc.) – The hand hygiene measures
– Keeping the 1.5-2-meter COVID distance
– No grouping together (no groups larger than 30 people) – Parties are prohibited!
Society is called upon to continue to adhere to the COVID-19 measures and not to relax once family and friends from abroad are visiting.
Society can contribute to making the mandatory 10-day Quarantine period more pleasant for family and friends, by staying in touch with them digitally. It is also possible to deliver packages and meals for them at the reception of the hotel where they will be staying. It will also be possible to collect packages from the hotels, which can be handed over after disinfection. Visiting them physically is not allowed during the quarantine period. On the 11th day, the Exit-screening will take place as usual by the appropriate authorities.
The guidelines regarding travelling to Suriname, enforcement and other rules can be found on the websites of BOG, SHATA, airlines, Airport Management and the FB page of the ASRA.
The partial opening concerns a pilot phase of one month, with evaluation moments during that month with all stakeholders involved. Everyone is therefore requested to take this into account and to reserve changes in the policy.