Breakthrough at last: Hong Kong to end compulsory quarantine for overseas arrivals with new ‘0+3’ scheme from 26 September

HONG KONG, CHINA. In big breaking news today, the Hong Kong government announced that it is scrapping mandatory hotel quarantine for overseas arrivals, effective 26 September.

Instead of the current ‘3+4’ (three days in a quarantine hotel and four at home for residents; three days in a quarantine hotel for visitors followed by four in a hotel of their choosing), those entering will only be required to undergo three days of home medical surveillance, with their movement citywide limited.

“Hong Kong is finally ending mandatory hotel quarantine for overseas arrivals after more than two years, marking the lifting of one of the world’s toughest pandemic-control regimes,” said South China Morning Post which broke the story.

Duty Zero by cdf at Hong Kong International Airport will be one of the prime beneficiaries of the new measures

Partner with us on WeChat and reach your key Chinese audience in Chinese. Stories related to the China travel retail market are featured each week on The Moodie Davitt Report’s WeChat Official Account. Please scan the QR code to follow us and contact Irene@MoodieDavittReport.com for native opportunities.

The decision was announced today by recently elected Hong Kong Chief Executive John Lee Ka-chiu. Lee said his administration is determined to reconnect the city with the world and reduce inconvenience to arriving passengers.

The news will be warmly welcomed by Hong Kong International Airport; its retail, F&B and hospitality partners including Duty Zero by cdf (China Duty Free Group and Lagardère Travel Retail), Gebr. Heinemann, The Shilla Duty Free, DFS Group, Dufry, SSP, Plaza Premium Group and others. Travel retailers in other Hong Kong locations (DFS Group and Dufry) will also be delighted at the news (as will a certain well-known travel retail publisher). We will bring you analysis and reaction soon.

This is the third big boost to travel retail in the region in two days. Yesterday Taiwan and Japan confirmed the relaxation of travel curbs. From 11 October Japan will welcome foreign solo travellers and remove the cap on daily inbound arrivals. Taiwan also plans to remove its mandatory three-day quarantine and welcome all visitors by 13 October 1 at the earliest.

Click on the image to read the full article from The South China Morning Post

Hong Kong changes in detail

Incoming travellers under the new plan will only be required to go through a period of home medical surveillance, with their movement citywide limited. Tourists can stay in any hotel during the three-day medical surveillance period

Other key changes

  • Residents not fully vaccinated will be allowed to fly back to Hong Kong
  • The cap on numbers of entries from Mainland China and Macau will be lifted and the scheme extended to the whole of the Mainland.
  • Overseas travellers arriving in Hong Kong will be allowed to take a rapid antigen test (RAT) within 24 hours of departure, instead of the previous requirement for a nucleic acid test (PCR) taken 48 hours before boarding.
  • Arriving travellers need to get tested at the airport but do not need to wait for results there
  • During the three-day period, they will be issued with a yellow code and cannot dine-in at restaurants or enter bars.

More to follow soon.

In June The Moodie Davitt Report launched a new quarterly eZine called The Moodie Davitt China Travel Retail Report. The cover story was dedicated to China Tourism Group. Click on the image to read the bi-lingual title. The next edition will be published in October and will feature a comprehensive follow-up on CTG Duty-Free’s Global Offering and Hong Kong secondary listing. Please email Kristyn@MoodieDavittReport.com for a free first year subscription.

Breakthrough at last: Hong Kong to end compulsory quarantine for overseas arrivals with new ‘0+3’ scheme from 26 September