Sri Lanka on Monday began a pilot program to welcome tourists into the island country by re-opening an airport in the southern part of the country.
The country’s international airports have been shut since March due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
A group of over 200 Ukrainian tourists arrived in the Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport on Monday in order to see the possibility of re-opening the airports for all travellers next month.
The chairman of Bandaranaike International Airport, G.A. Chandrasiri told Xinhua that the program will be conducted on a trial-and-error basis and will welcome tourists under a strict travel bubble.
The tourists will be subject to PCR tests upon their arrival at the airport and will be staying in a travel bubble operated in Bentota, Koggala, and Beruwela, along the country’s southern coast, tourism officials said.
More flights carrying tourists are expected to arrive in the coming days under the program, where tourists will be under a strict travel bubble.
Sri Lanka airports have been opened for repatriation fights only, as all its international airports were shut in March after the first local COVID-19 case was detected in the country to prevent spread.
Sri Lanka has to date reported over 41,000 COVID-19 cases in the midst of a second wave.