Starting from the date of December 30 of this year, all passengers arriving from other destinations via international flights that disembark at the country's airports must present the test for Covid-19 | Negative RT-PCR performed at least 3 days before travel.

Dispatch nº 630 of the Civil Chamber of the Presidency of the Republic was published on Thursday (17) in an additional edition of the Federal Official Gazette and establishes “exceptional restrictions for foreigners who wish to travel to Brazil or Brazilians who return home by plane, highway or waterway”.

“Before any boarding procedure at airports, travelers from international destinations in Brazil or abroad must submit, along with their documents to the airline offering the flight: documents from the laboratory examination of certification I (RT-PCR) for screening for infection by SARS-CoV-2, and obtain a negative or non-reactive result performed within 3 days before departure”, which establishes Article 7 (1) of the Ordinance.

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However, the obligations under this standard do not apply to immigrants with permanent residence in Brazil, foreign professionals who provide services to international organizations and employees in other countries recognized by the Brazilian government.

The requirement also excludes foreigners who are relatives or spouses of Brazilians who have obtained authorization from the Brazilian government “for public interest or humanitarian reasons” or who have a National Immigration Registry.

According to the same decree, the restriction does not include humanitarian operations in border areas, nor the movement of people in Brazil and in the “twin cities” of neighboring countries and workers who deal with the transport of cargo.

covid airport Brazil

Photo: Fernando Frazão / Agência Brasil

The rule also does not include foreigners with an entry visa, coming from Paraguay by land, as long as they are in a regularized migratory situation.

Failure to comply with the requirements may result in civil or criminal liability, deportation to the country of origin or invalidation of the integration application (if any).

Thus, in order to be able to disembark in Brazil, travelers need to test negative for covid-19 while still abroad, so it is highly recommended that you check availability, cost and testing procedures in advance at the destination where the traveler is located. One more thing for the travel agent to coordinate and serve the customer and another cost and obligation for travelers. For airlines, another process needs to be implemented: verifying the health records (test and declaration) of passengers traveling to Brazil.

The requirement for a negative test on foreigners is a trend already demanded by some countries. Some countries, like Uruguay, also require requirements from residents and citizens, while other countries still need to quarantine travelers from abroad (like China). On Thursday (17) it was the first time in three months that Brazil recorded more than a thousand deaths from covid-19, indicating that the second wave should intensify during holidays and end-of-year meetings.

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