Passengers aboard late-night international flights arriving into the country will be exempted from the 9pm to 4am curfew imposed as part of efforts to curb the spread of Coronavirus.
The Ministry of Transport said the exemption was to facilitate smooth operations at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA)
“International passengers will be exempted from restrictions on movement past curfew hours when the international flights resume,” the ministry said.
In his State address on July 6th, President Uhuru Kenyatta announced the phased reopening of air travel starting with domestic flights on July 15th and International flights on August 1st.
Passengers are however reminded to observe all other protocol to contain the spread of Coronavirus. They are required to wear masks at all times, sanitize and maintain a social distance.
The Kenya Airports Authority and the Ministry of Health exempted in-flight passengers from the social distancing rule, as it would not make economic sense to fly with an empty row of seats.
Domestic flights have had to adhere to the curfew timings, although this may not be practical for international flights, especially those from Europe and the Middle East.
Transport Cabinet secretary James Macharia also said last week that passengers arriving into the country would be exempted from the 14-day mandatory quarantine if they do not show any signs of the Coronavirus.
“All passengers shall be exempted from quarantine on arrival at their destinations if their body temperatures are not above 37.5 degrees Celsius and they do not have a persistent cough, difficulty in breathing and other flu-like symptoms,” Mr Macharia said last week.
The move is part of a strategy aimed at restoring Kenya’s economy, which has suffered a big hit from the pandemic, slowing to 2.5 per cent growth this year from 5.4 per cent previously. The tourism industry, which is one of the key pillars of the economy, has incurred losses amounting to Sh85 billion.
The government released protocols for commercial air transport last month requiring the airlines to adhere to the highest level of safety for customers and staff.