COVID travel restrictions impacting business aviation

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IMPORTANT: The impact of the global COVID travel restrictions on business aviation is fluid and evolving by the minute. While we do our best to keep this article current by adding additional information once it is received and confirmed, always check with your Universal Trip Support Team and local authorities for the most current information.

The top section of the blog will feature weekly insights and trends. Scroll down to see a list of country restriction changes and visit the individual region blog articles for full details. Note: Older updates will now be kept at the end of the country sections.


COVID-19 Restriction Trends

June 17, 2021

Major News, Trends, Insights & Other Stuff –

  • BIGGEST Movers:
  • Med Reopening Schedule – Most major destinations are open. Just waiting on Italy at this point:
  • Reminder: Secure Med Parking BEFORE Hotels – Don’t book Med-area hotels until you confirm your parking. Most hotels in the Med are non-refundable during peak season. Lock in your aircraft parking first. After that, our Hotels Team can help you secure your best hotel options. Like parking, hotel availability is very competitive.
  • Don’t Forget Passports & Visas Entry Requirements – Don’t get tunnel vision on COVID entry requirements and overlook passport and visa requirements. We’re seeing cases of this happening. They all factor into feasibility for entry. Our destination Feasibility Guides contain all this information for you, which you can request from us at any time.
  • Watch the Customs Procedures – U.S. CBP is still on reduced hours at many airports vs pre-pandemic, so don’t assume an airport that used to have 24-hour customs still does. Similarly, on the int’l front, clearing onboard the aircraft or in the GAT may longer be available. Check with us on the latest.
  • U.S. to be Added to EU’s Green Certificate – EU Members have agreed to lift travel restrictions on the U.S. and a few other named countries in July. Of course, many EU countries have already opened or have announced their opening independently of this. The more interesting piece of this will be to see how processes ease by rolling U.S. travelers into the EU’s digital Green Certificate program.
  • The New Atlantic Charter and U.S.-UK Travel Corridor – While there was some big press on the new Atlantic Charter between the U.S. and UK going into the G-7, not much more came out of it other than a “Task Force” (working group) at this stage. Can has been kicked.
  • Possible Easing U.S. Presidential Proclamations – Related to the above, this Biden Administration announced on June 8 it is forming expert working groups with Canada, the United Kingdom (UK), Mexico and the European Union (EU) to determine how to lift border restrictions. Hopefully we see something from this soon.
  • Rumor Mill: Canadian Quarantine Requirements Changing in July – Again…this all tied to these working groups mentioned above, but nothing official has come out. We’ll report on the latest as we get it.
  • The Vaccine Passport Watch Party 💉🛂🥳 – More countries joined the party this week. You can track the list of countries adopting some form of a vaccine passport/exemption policy on our blog.
  • Yesterday’s Ops Webinar Meetup – Watch the video recording here. Lots of good info was shared on the UK, Mediterranean, and US/CAN operating landscapes.

June 17, 2021

United States

Summary info only. Detailed intelligence available – Pre-arrival testing requirements, health forms, quarantine details, local curfews, and scenario-specific info have been omitted from this overview. Ask your Universal Trip Support team for a Feasibility Guide to get detailed intelligence for your destination of interest.

Travelers from outbreak & variant virus hotspots – Many countries are restricting entry for travelers who have visited an outbreak and/or variant virus hotspot, including Brazil, India, and South Africa. Travelers from neighboring countries may also be restricted.

  • U.S. – See Hawaii.
    • On Jan. 12, 2021, the U.S. CDC issued an order requiring proof of a negative viral COVID-19 test (NAAT/PCR or antigen), or medical proof of recovery, for anyone arriving from a foreign country to the U.S. The order went into effect Jan. 26, 2021 for ALL flights, including private flight and GA aircraft. Key points:
      • Only ACTIVE crew members are EXEMPT. You can find the full definition of ACTIVE CREW and some analysis on the various exemption scenarios that we’ve been asked about on our website.
      • Passengers must show aircraft operator proof of negative result, taken with 3 days of boarding, or of recovery prior to boarding.
      • U.S. CDC Approves Home Test for Int’l Arrivals – On May 7, the CDC updated its Order to allow self-administered COVID tests (aka home tests) to qualify for int’l arrivals to the U.S. Note that the CDC has guidance on what home tests will be allowed.
      • Operators of private flights and general aviation must maintain passenger Attestations (i.e., declaration forms) for 2 years. Note: While the operator needs to see the test result, only the Attestations (which can be captured digitally) must be kept on file. We are providing free pre-populated Attestation forms on Universal-managed trips in-bound to the U.S. Ask us for details.
      • The CDC’s website has more information on the order, including the official announcement and FAQs.
      • Note FAA NOTAM reinforcing the CDC order.
      • This article on our blog has more information, including a comprehensive list of FAQs we’ve received such as vaccines exemptions (not allowed), types of tests accepted, enforcement, “active crew” definition, impact to air ambulance missions and more.
    • On March 8, the CDC issued its first set of guidelines on how fully vaccinated people can visit safely with others. The CDC continues to advise against all non-essential travel, but there is no meaningful impact on int’l travel with the release of these guidelines.
    • U.S. Presidential Proclamations: On April 30, the U.S. travel restrictions were extended to include India. All non-U.S. travelers who have recently been in Brazil, India, South Africa, and most EU countries, including the UK and Ireland, are restricted.
      • CBP has published a bulletin announcing a variety of U.S. visa holders have been granted blanket national interest exceptions to the current entry restrictions on travelers from suspended regions. Note: B1 and B2 visas are not exempt; HOWEVER, read next bullet.
      • The U.S. State Department quietly released a buried update allowing National Interest Waivers (NIWs) to be issued to foreign crew seeking entry to the U.S. for the purposes of training or aircraft pickup, delivery, or maintenance – despite their travel history. Crew must have a B-1/B-2, B-1, or M-1 visa, or Visa Waiver Program authorization to qualify. This is a big one many in the business aviation community have been asking for. We have extensive expertise with NIWs and can assist.
      • All stops in suspended regions, overnight or just tech stops, are treated the same.
      • Entry by any non-U.S. foreign national (that includes Canadian and Mexican citizens) who has been in a suspended region over the past 14 days is HIGHLY RESTRICTED and will be denied, with few exceptions.
      • CDC guidelines RECOMMEND quarantine; they don’t mandate it. CDC spokespeople have confirmed the same.
    • Expired U.S. Passports for Return Travel – CBP issued this bulletin announcing that U.S. citizens holding a U.S. passport that expired on or after January 1, 2020 may still be able to use their expired U.S. passport for direct return travel to the United States until December 31, 2021.
    • New U.S CBP Documentation Provided for Arrivals – Effective April 26, Part 91 arrivals into the U.S will begin receiving this new document [PDF] with their landing rights packages at select ports. It basically covers roles and responsibilities for both operator and CBP for int’l arrivals. NO ACTION is needed when you get this. It’s just good-to-know info to have in your back pocket.
    • U.S. APIS Update: All GA travelers are now required to provide additional details, including primary phone number and email address, for contact tracing purposes when coming from Guinea or the DROC in response to Ebola. Scheduled airlines have already been doing this. Airport funneling from these destinations is also in effect. While these destinations aren’t the most popular for GA travel, it’s not unlikely that we could see the APIS data collection portion of this requirement expanded to cover arrivals from more countries (e.g., for contact tracing other diseases). Note that Private and Charter flights will have different processes for complying with this based on how APIS information is currently transmitted for each of these two flight types. Read more about this on our blog.
    • Applications for signatory carrier status under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) are still being processed. All U.S.-based operators (including some international companies with U.S. subsidiaries) and non-U.S. commercial operators are eligible to apply. If you are not a signatory carrier and qualify, we recommend you apply to increase your operating flexibility. We can help.
    • The National Interest Waiver (NIW) is another avenue foreign nationals can seek for entry into the U.S. and can be an effective means of entry. Allowed purposes of visit include Business, Education, Training, and Medical. Application for entry is available for the following U.S. AOEs: KLAX, KEWR, KDFW, KJFK, and KIAH, as well as through the U.S. Embassy in France and the UK. Our Global Regulatory Services team has worked out the repeatable process to apply at each of these and can provide support.
    • The U.S. STEP Program is an important risk mitigation program that U.S. nationals should be using on every international trip, especially now with COVID. When the first wave hit and we saw the massive wave of lockdowns, this program helped get people on the U.S. Embassy’s evacuation list to return home. It has a whole host of other benefits like if you lose your passport or have medical issues, if there is a terrorist incident or civil unrest, etc. Our Global Regulatory Services team offers an optional, turnkey STEP Registration Service for your trips with us.
    • Any operator entering the U.S. from the south should be taking advantage of the CBP’s Border Overflight Exemption (BOE) program to avoid having to make an extra stop at the first designated AOE when returning home. A BOE is good for 2 years, and it greatly increases your operational flexibility. We can take care of this for you.
    • Non-U.S. charter (non-scheduled commercial) operators flying to/from the U.S. with less than 12 flights per year MUST have a DOT Part 375 Ops Permit and/or Special Authorization. We can assist.
    • Advise passengers and crew to continue maintaining a 14-day travel history log of the countries, states, and cities they visit. This is critical for both travel into the U.S., within it, and abroad.
    • Restrictions on non-essential travel for USA/Canada/Mexico land borders remain in place until June 21, 2021.
    • Hawaii –
      • Effective June 15, 2021, those traveling inter-island will no longer need to take a pre-travel COVID test. Quarantine rules are also being dropped entirely. Additionally, those who have been vaccinated IN Hawaii will be able to forgo the 10-day quarantine without getting a COVID test. Those who were vaccinated anywhere else will still have to take a test before flying to Hawaii. If not, they will need to quarantine for 10 days.
      • The pre-arrival testing program began Oct. 15, allowing visitors to bypass quarantine. Read more online. Hawaii has a specific list of approved C19 testing providers and tests that you must use, and this supersedes the CDC pre-testing order. All travelers arriving in Hawaii are still required to have a temperature check and complete a Travel Declaration Form. U.S Presidential Proclamations restricting flights apply. People traveling interisland can find additional information and the interisland limited quarantine request by visiting county webpages. Note that each island has its own requirements and rules, so check beyond the state level.
    • Puerto Rico – Open to foreign tourism. Both U.S. and international pax need a COVID-19 test (within 72 hours of travel); otherwise, traveler will be tested on arrival. Complete a digital Travel SAFE Declaration Form and submit at www.travelsafe.pr.gov or www.viajaseguro.pr.gov. Proof of negative COVID test required to avoid quarantine. Crew are exempt.
    • USVI – International leisure hotel guests are allowed. U.S Presidential Proclamations restricting flights apply. Since this is a U.S. territory, CDC testing requirements for int’l arrivals do not apply for U.S. citizens. Visit the USVI Travel Screening Portal and fill out the info requested in advance. Additional information and testing requirements available on https://usviupdate.com/. Note that testing requirements DO apply to the crew, unless crew is on the ground less than 24 hours. Our preferred ground handler at TIST, Standard Aviation, has parking availability and can provide air transfers to neighboring Caribbean islands.
    • Alaska – Alaska’s travel mandates and orders are now just travel advisories. Full entry details online.
    • See detailed restrictions for the U.S.

Canada



  • Canada has this online tool to help you assess if you can enter the country.
  • Canada to Ease Restrictions on Returning Residents – It was announced that fully vaccinated citizens and residents returning to Canada will be exempt from quarantine in early July. The official regulatory update is still pending.
  • Airport Funneling in Effect – All international passenger flights, including those from the U.S., are required to enter Canada through one of the following four funneling airports: CYYZ/Toronto, CYVR/Vancouver, CYUL/Montreal, and CYYC/Calgary. Medevac, ferry and crew repatriation flights, cargo-only flights, and tech stops where no passengers disembark are exempt.
  • Mandatory 3-Day Quarantine in Gov’t Sanctioned Hotel – All air travelers arriving in Canada, with very limited exceptions, must reserve a room in a Government of Canada-approved hotel for three nights at their own cost, and take a COVID-19 molecular test on arrival at their own cost. Travelers will need to book a hotel in the city in which they first arrive in Canada: Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto or Montreal. Bookings can’t be made directly with the hotel. Prepare for high call volume.
  • Vaccinated Americans and vaccinated Canadians are not exempt from quarantine.
  • Canada’s airlines are slowly starting to resume flight services to/from Mexico, Costa Rica, and the Caribbean. Check each airline’s website for published schedules.
  • Officials in Canada extended a ban on entry for most nonresident foreign nationals until further notice as part of the measures to curb the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
  • All airline passengers from abroad aged 5 years and over must present a negative PCR test taken up to 72 hours before departure to Canada. Persons with a negative PCR test result and who are authorized to enter Canada must still complete the mandatory 14-day self-quarantine.
  • As of Nov. 21, travelers will be required to submit contact and quarantine information via ArriveCAN app. Fines of $1,000 CAD may be placed upon any traveler for not complying.
  • Restrictions on non-essential travel for USA/Canada/Mexico remain in place until June 21, 2021. CANPASS / CBSA (CANADA) is by far the most stringent enforcer of this policy in regards to air travel.
  • Flights from the U.S. are being allowed on a case-by-case basis. Some are getting through without issue; others are getting denied. Canada is very strict on vetting “essential” vs. “non-essential” travel between the U.S. and Canada. Best practice is to gather all relevant documentation (e.g., travel history, medical declarations, purpose of flight, etc.) and seek approval from CANPASS well in advance. Canada is still restricting entry to 4 ports. Consult with us for any planned mission.
  • Note that Canada has very strict quarantine requirements for anyone entering the country. Active crew are exempt but need to follow these contact collection guidelines.

Mexico

  • Mexico is open and accessible. Popular tourist destinations like Los Cabos, Cozumel, PV, and Cancun are active with flights.
  • Our ground handing teams in Mexico (Mexico City/TolucaLos CabosCancunCozumelPVMonterrey, etc.) are available to support your missions.
  • AFAC remains closed but is processing AOC renewals and modifications, one time permits, blanket permit modifications, and blanket permit verifications remotely/online. Note that AFAC is working under reduced staffing hours, so application processing will take longer than normal. For assistance with your Mexico permits, we can help.
  • There is a no-touch Covid-19 health assessment form, which is required on arrival/departure. After completing the form, print or screen cap the QR code that is generated for easy access. You’ll need to present this to the health inspectors upon arrival into Mexico. Here is the link: https://afac.hostingerapp.com – Note that you need to actually copy/paste it into your browser; just clicking it will throw an error. A 14-day quarantine at residence may be necessary; however, popular tourist zones in the typical vacation cities (e.g., Cancun, Los Cabos, PV, Cozumel) are excluded.
  • Restrictions on non-essential travel for USA/Canada/Mexico remain in place until June 21, 2021. CANPASS / CBSA (CANADA) is by far the most stringent enforcer of this policy in regards to air travel.
  • The Mexican government has established an epidemiological traffic light monitoring system based on the number of cases and risk of contagion to manage the relaxing of restrictions. The status of it varies from state to state.

Caribbean

 

Summary info only. Detailed intelligence available – Pre-arrival testing requirements, health forms, quarantine details, local curfews, and scenario-specific info have been omitted from this overview. Ask your Universal Trip Support team for a Feasibility Guide to get detailed intelligence for your destination of interest.

Travelers from outbreak & variant virus hotspots – Many countries are restricting entry for travelers who have visited an outbreak and/or variant virus hotspot, including Brazil, India, and South Africa. Travelers from neighboring countries may also be restricted.

    • Anguilla – Open. With proof of vaccine, there is no need for medical insurance, but there is still a 7-day quarantine. Starting July 1, travelers who have been fully vaccinated, with the last dose administered at least 21 days before arrival, will no longer be required to quarantine nor be tested upon arrival.
    • Antigua and Barbuda – Open to most travelers, except hotspot countries (like Brazil, India, and South Africa). Requires approval before operating. See official website for details on access to tourist zones and when quarantine comes into play.
    • Aruba – Aruba is accepting flights from all U.S. states. Aruba’s Digital Embarkation-Disembarkation Card (ED card) and health insurance are required.
    • Bahamas – Open. No quarantine required. This electronic health visa must be completed. Health insurance is required. More info at the Office of the Prime Minister and Reopen Bahamas. Effective May 1, travelers who have completed their vaccine plus two weeks immunity will not be required to take COVID-19 test prior to arrival.
    • Barbados – Open. Negative test must be uploaded at www.travelform.gov.bb in advance. Upon arrival take Rapid Antigen test and wear a tracer bracelet during quarantine. After 5 days take PCR test to exit quarantine. Effective May 8, immunized travelers will be administered a PCR or Rapid test on arrival. These travelers would have restricted movement until the result of the arrival test is known. See details online.
    • Bermuda – Open. Vaccinated travelers will be tested on arrival and must quarantine until results are known (about 24 hours). Then they will be released from quarantine and free to move around. Unvaccinated travelers must quarantine a full 14 days on a gov’t approved location.
    • Bonaire – Open, but many countries restricted. Check with us for latest. Must complete a Health Declaration Form at www.bonairepublichealth.org. Quarantine is required unless traveling from “low-risk countries.”.
    • British Virgin Islands (BVI) – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE: Open for tourism. Testing pre-arrival, on-arrival, and on day 4 required. Details online. Form must be submitted in advance of arrival on the BVI Gateway Traveller’s Authorization Portal. Contact tracer app required. Immunized travelers will be tested on arrival. Once arrival test result is known, immunized traveler will be exempt from 7-day quarantine. Health insurance is required.
    • Cayman Islands – Leisure travel allowed. You must apply at TravelTime for pre-approval. 14-day quarantine at hotel/villa (plus 48-hr testing period) required prior to freely roaming island. Can be reduced to 10 days with proof of a vaccine. Health form required. Wearable health monitoring device and tracer app install also required. See website for more details.
    • Cuba – Certain parts of country are open for tourism. U.S. sanctions still apply. COVID-19 test upon arrival. Quarantine is required.
    • Curacao – Vaccinated travelers from the U.S. and these other countries are permitted to enter Curacao without quarantine.
    • Dominica – Open; however, entry requirements, disembarkation, and quarantine protocols vary depending on the country-of-origin’s risk level (CARICOM Travel Bubble, Low Risk, Medium Risk, High Risk). An online health questionnaire is required. Upon arrival, passenger will undergo a health screen and a rapid COVID test. If negative, no quarantine required unless traveler is from high-risk country.
    • Dominican Republic – Open to international passengers. COVID-19 test not required for crew and passengers, except for passengers coming from India, Brazil, and South Africa. Universal Aviation DR is open and supporting missions.
    • Grenada – Open. Apply for approval online. Expect to quarantine. Tracer app required. More information online. Persons providing proof of full vaccination will only be required to quarantine for up to 48 hours, pending a negative result from a PCR test administered upon entry.
    • Guadeloupe – French territory – Closed for tourism. See website (note: may not reflect the latest).
    • Haiti – Open. No quarantine required.
    • Jamaica – Open. All foreign crew and passengers must obtain travel authorization online prior to arrival. Travelers from India, Trinidad, and six South American countries are prohibited. Quarantine required for length of stay or 14 days, in either a residence or tourist zone (“Resilient Corridor”). See full details online.
    • Martinique – French territory – Effective Jun 9, French citizens and permanent residents will be allowed to travel as tourists. Citizens from other EU countries are not allowed to travel as tourists at this time.
    • St. Barts – French territory – Open for vaccinated travelers. Read announcement.
    • St. Lucia – Open, with quarantine. More info online. Immunized travelers can apply to Min. of Health to be exempt from quarantine.
    • St. Kitts & Nevis – Open. All travelers must seek permission prior to travel. Quarantine is mandatory. Negative COVID test and tracing app install required. See website for details.
    • Sint Maarten (Dutch side) – The island is split between France and the Netherlands. However, TNCM falls on the Netherlands side. The Netherlands side is enacting stricter restrictions for passengers from “high-risk” countries. Travelers from the U.S. and Canada can enter. Check with us for details based on your specific flight scenario.
    • St. Martin (French side) – The island is split between France and the Netherlands. French side is closed for tourism.
    • St. Vincent & Grenadines – TVSA is fully operational after La Soufriere volcano eruption and cleanup citywide. Consider TVSC if transferring to TVSM. Travelers from high-risk countries (including Canada and U.S.) will self-quarantine for 14 days at government-approved hotel or facility. Immunized travelers must quarantine for seven days at an approved government facility or accommodation. Testing upon arrival required for all pax and crew. Aircraft disinfection required.
    • Trinidad and Tobago – Closed UFN.
    • Turks and Caicos – Open. Travel insurance required.
    • USVI and Puerto Rico – See U.S. section above.
    • Ask your Universal Trip Support team for a Feasibility Guide to get detailed intelligence for your destination of interest.

Latin America

Summary info only. Detailed intelligence available – Pre-arrival testing requirements, health forms, quarantine details, local curfews, and scenario-specific info have been omitted from this overview. Ask your Universal Trip Support team for a Feasibility Guide to get detailed intelligence for your destination of interest.

Travelers from variant virus hotspots – Many countries are restricting entry for travelers who have visited a variant virus hotspot, including the UK, Brazil, and South Africa. Travelers from neighboring countries may also be restricted.

  • Our FBOs and ground handling offices in ArgentinaBrazilChileCosta RicaMexico, and Venezuela are still operational and supporting missions.
  • Argentina – Closed UFN. Universal Aviation Argentina is staying on top of the latest.
  • Belize – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE. Travelers with proof of COVID-19 immunization are no longer required to present a negative COVID-19 test result for entry.
  • Brazil – COVID test and health entry form for both crew and passengers. Crew are not exempt. Universal Aviation Brazil is following our C19 Health and Safety standards to support you safely.
  • Bolivia – U.S. passengers allowed entry for business. Travel health insurance and quarantine required.
  • Chile – Until at least June 30, entry is restricted to medical, humanitarian, cargo and foreigners who have been specially authorized to enter by the Chilean diplomatic mission in their country. Travel medical insurance and quarantine required. Universal Aviation Chile is staying on top of the latest.
  • Colombia – International passengers are allowed to arrive in Colombia. CHECK MIG form required on the Colombian Immigration website. SKBO, SKCG, SKRG, and SKCL are open to accept flights from the U.S., Ecuador, Mexico, Guatemala, Dominican Republic, Bolivia, Curacao, and Panama.
  • Costa Rica – Open. No quarantine is required. All passengers and crew must have travel insurance and complete this health form in advance.
  • Ecuador – Is permitting persons to enter, but if you are coming from Brazil you will need to quarantine. Health form required. For mainland airports, no test required with proof of both vaccine doses. Galapagos airports SEGS and SEST still require a test.
  • El Salvador – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE: Open. No quarantine. Travelers with proof of COVID-19 immunization are not required to present a negative COVID-19 test result for entry.
  • Falkland Islands – Business flights require special invitation letter. Quarantine and periodic COVID testing required, no exemptions. Leisure flights possible if transiting direct to a private vessel. Contact locator form required. Adequate aeromedical insurance is recommended.
  • Guatemala – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE for entry. Open. No quarantine. Health screening on arrival.
  • Guyana – Advanced screening on arrival. No quarantine.
  • Honduras – Open for business flights. Quarantine not required with proof of a negative test. COVID test on departure required. Travelers with proof of vaccination may be exempt from the testing requirement.
  • Nicaragua – Open. No quarantine. Local contact, aircraft sanitization certificate, and traveler declaration form required.
  • Panama – Open. Testing on arrival and quarantine are required. Quarantine may be avoided depending on the 14-day travel history. Travelers with digital vaccine certificates proving they have been fully vaccinated at least two weeks prior and have a negative COVID test in their IATA Travel Pass will be exempt from further testing requirements at the airport. Must complete an online registration form.
  • Paraguay – Paraguay is open for flights. Proof of Medical insurance required. Health card required.
  • Peru – Reopened for international flights with the exception of those who have been on Brazil, South Africa, or India in the past 14 days.
  • Suriname – Flights require government approval. Health insurance and quarantine required. Nationwide lockdown in effect through June 18. Aircraft Disinfection Required.
  • Uruguay – Effective June 1, foreign non-residents can enter with special authorization issued by the government and a valid reason to travel. Vaccinated passengers will be exempt from quarantine. Medical insurance with COVID-19 coverage is required.
  • Venezuela – Accessible with approval from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Quarantine at government facility required, up to 14 days. Aircraft Disinfection is required.
  • Ask your Universal Trip Support team for a Feasibility Guide to get detailed intelligence for your destination of interest.

Europe

Summary info only. Detailed intelligence available – Pre-arrival testing requirements, health forms, quarantine details, local curfews, and scenario-specific info have been omitted from this overview. Ask your Universal Trip Support team for a Feasibility Guide to get detailed intelligence for your destination of interest.

Travelers from variant virus hotspots – Many countries are restricting entry for travelers who have visited a variant virus hotspot, including the UK, Brazil, and South Africa. Travelers from neighboring countries may also be restricted.

    • Our FBOs and ground handling offices in IrelandUKFranceGreeceItalySpain and Turkey are all open and supporting missions.
    • Reopen Europe has improved its online tool for helping you assess entry requirements into the EU based on your trip scenario.
    • Golden Visa Countries – Portugal, Cyprus, Malta, Greece, Spain and Ireland have golden visa programs that grant real estate owners and their families citizenship or residency status. For instance, Portugal requires a 500K Euro investment to qualify for citizenship, and having citizenship means other EU countries become accessible. Many aircraft owners and charter passengers are leveraging these programs.
  • European countries that are accessible to passengers from the U.S. and other countries not on the EC’s list include:
    • Albania – Open. Health screening upon arrival.
    • Austria – U.S. citizens with a business purpose are allowed entry directly. Or, U.S. citizens can enter via intra-Schengen without restrictions. As of May 19, hotels, restaurants, leisure and culture facilities reopened with strict protective measures in place. Flights from the UK are prohibited June 1-20. Flights from Brazil, India and South Africa are prohibited UFN. See entry details online.
    • Belarus – Accessible. Travelers from this list of countries will likely have to self-quarantine.
    • Belgium – Authorized travel is only possible upon presentation of a certificate issued by the employer and a certificate issued by the Belgian diplomatic or consular post, if it’s demonstrated that the trip is essential.
    • Bosnia and Herzegovina – U.S. citizens are allowed entry with an invitation letter.
    • Croatia – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE: Allowing entry based on economic interest or tourism. Submit notice at https://entercroatia.mup.hr. Our Universal Aviation offices in Italy are helping coordinate arrangements to enter Croatia for customers. Quarantine is not required for vaccinated persons.
    • Cyprus – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE: Vaccinated travelers from the UK, U.S., EU, and others are exempt from pre-arrival testing and quarantine. They are still subject to random testing upon arrival.
    • Czech Republic – Authorities have announced that the country will reopen its borders to nationals of all remaining EU-associated countries and Serbia starting June 21, provided travelers can provide evidence of a negative COVID-19 test OR proof of full vaccination or recovery from COVID-19. Similar arrangements already apply for nationals of Austria, Croatia, Germany, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, and Slovenia.
    • Denmark – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE: Denmark opened to fully vaccinated travelers from orange and yellow EU and Schengen countries plus Canada, United Kingdom and USA will be allowed to travel to Denmark. No testing or quarantine required.
    • France – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE – Open for tourism to fully vaccinated non-EU citizens from countries not on the red list. U.S. and Canada sit on the Green List (least restrictive). Vaccinated travelers from the U.S. and Canada can enter France for any reason. Travelers from countries on the Orange List will also need to provide proof of a negative PCR or antigen test of less than 72 hours upon boarding. Our blog article has the full details.
    • Germany – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE. U.S. travelers are allowed in with proof of vaccine or proof that the passenger had COVID and has recovered. Testing upon arrival required. HOWEVER, note that the country is still under partial lockdown, and hotels are not available for tourists…only for those visiting on essential business.
    • Greece – Open to U.S. travelers that are vaccinated OR those who have a negative PCR test result taken 72 hours before arrival. PLF form needs to be filled out at least 24 hours prior to arrival. Our FBO ground support offices in Greece are ready to support you. Be sure to submit your parking requests ASAP for best options during Mediterranean summer peak season. Our Greek Islands destination guide has more details. Travel back and forth from the mainland to islands or vice versa requires PCR test or proof of vaccination.
    • Hungary – U.S. persons can travel to Hungary for essential business. An invitation letter from the receiving party should be submitted in advance for approval. All U.S. passengers approved in for essential business don’t require COVID testing or quarantine.
    • Ireland – Our Universal Aviation offices in Dublin and Shannon can assist.
      • Fully-vaccinated travelers can avoid the mandatory quarantine requirement (see below) starting July 19, 2021. Quarantine at home or a hotel of choice still required. Full details online.
      • Anyone entering the country from the U.S, or has recently visited or transited either, is required to complete a 14-day quarantine. Quarantining for just length of stay (e.g., 2 nights) is not an option, but you can end the quarantine if you get a negative PCR test obtained no less than 5 days after arrival. Crew are exempt from this new requirement.
      • This pre-departure testing provider is available at EIDW for travelers headed to the U.S.
      • U.S. CBP Preclearance is open at Shannon/EINN for GA; however, hours have changed again. Read our blog for details and ops procedures.
      • Shannon has an onsite COVID testing program providing quick turnaround. Appointments are required and can be booked online at https://rocdochealthcheck.ie.
    • Italy – Now open to U.S. tourists via select Covid-tested Commercial flights, Delta, AA, and United. Details are expected for GA leisure flights by July 1 (or sooner). In the meantime, the Prime Minister is urging foreign visitors to start booking their summer plans now. In addition, there are a few ways third-country nationals (including U.S. citizens) can enter now. Complete details are online and there is this survey tool you can use:
      • Direct Access: Business purposes with prior approval, and Universal Aviation Italy reports that Italian authorities have been approving many requests.
      • Intra-Europe Corridors: Travelers who have stayed in the EU for 14 days or more can enter some regions of Italy. Travel history will dictate if a passenger will need to quarantine or not. See website for details.
    • Latvia – Open. Passengers who have been in the EU, EEA, Switzerland or UK for the past 14 days and have proof of vaccine approved by European Medicines Agency or WHO are exempt from quarantine.
    • Macedonia – Open. Travelers arriving from India will have to quarantine for 14 days.
    • Malta – U.S. passengers are not allowed in general, unless “corridoring” in with a clean 14-day travel history. Health form required. Travelers from some high-risk cities/regions within Europe will need to have a special permit. Quarantine required, depending on country of origin and travel history. Proof of full vaccination will be accepted in place of a COVID test result for those allowed to enter.
    • Moldova – Foreign citizens from most Red countries are prohibited, with some exceptions.
    • Montenegro – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE. Open to U.S. citizens. Aircraft disinfection required.
    • Netherlands – U.S. citizens can enter for essential business if they are able to get a “Note Verbale” from the Dutch Embassy. Non-EU/Schengen passengers transiting from high-risk, hotspot countries are prohibited UFN.
    • Poland – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE for countries on the allowed list only, which doesn’t include U.S. Passengers, including U.S. citizens, can apply for essential business travel waiver from the Polish Embassy. All international arrivals with special permit will be required to self-isolate. Travelers with a vaccine are exempt from quarantine. The updated flight ban list can be found online.
    • Portugal – Officially open to tourism, including U.S. travelers. A negative COVID test on arrival is required.
    • Serbia – U.S. citizens can enter for business or tourism. No quarantine required. Fully vaccinated travelers from some EU countries are exempt from providing negative COVID-19 test results for entry.
    • Slovak Republic – PCR test and quarantine required for entry. Burgundy District has a 20-hour curfew in effect UFN. Travelers from the EU and Schengen region are not required to test or quarantine with proof of vaccine. Slovakia implemented a system to categorize countries using Green, Red and Black. Travelers from Green countries can end their quarantine with a negative PCR test at any time after arrival. Travelers from Red countries (including USA) can end their quarantine with a negative PCR test on the eighth day of quarantine. Travelers from Black countries must complete 14 days of quarantine.
    • Slovenia – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE, but only for travelers from countries not on the red list. While the U.S. currently sits on the red list, U.S. travelers may be still able to enter if can prove essential business reason.
    • Spain – Open. Travelers from “at-risk” zones, including the United States can enter Spain for any reason. Travelers must provide either proof of vaccination, a negative COVID test, or proof of recovery. Our blog article has all the details.
    • Sweden – U.S. passengers allowed if arriving from Schengen country. Quarantine not required. U.S. passengers on direct flights from U.S. with special business invitation letter may be allowed entry.
    • Switzerland – Will be reopening to vaccinated U.S. travelers June 28. Until then, U.S. passengers allowed for business if arriving from Schengen country, or passengers can get in direct from the U.S. if they obtain approval via the Swiss Embassy. Business purpose letter required. Quarantine required if they have been to any of these countries (note that U.S is NOT on this list) at any time within the last 14 days before entering Switzerland.
    • Turkey – Travelers from Brazil, India, and South Africa must quarantine. Other than the countries above, Turkey remains open on the Mediterranean to Private/Business flights (including leisure) regardless the country of registration and/or nationality of passenger. Foreign tourists are exempt from the country’s local curfew measures, and they are not required the quarantine. Our Universal Aviation office in Turkey can provide assistance.
    • Ukraine – Open. Travelers who have completed the vaccine process are exempt from presenting a negative Covid-19 test on arrival. Medical insurance and tracer app required. Aircraft disinfection required. Read more online.
    • UK – Accessible. See section below for more details.
    • Rest of Europe – Most EU countries are allowing essential business travel (for instance, your principal is considering investing in a European business), so if you can state your case, there may be a way in.
  • UK –
    • The final stage (four) of easing lockdown restrictions has been delayed until July 19.
    • Jail time – The UK is imposing jail time of up to 10 years for travelers who lie about their travel history.
    • UK entry requirements – Travelers must follow the UK’s Red, Amber, and Green list rules for entering the UK.
      • Travelers from Green List countries don’t require quarantine. The U.S., Canada, and most EU countries currently sit on the Amber List, which mean a 10-day quarantine for travelers arriving from these countries, unless you pay to test out early on day 5.
      • Arrivals from Amber List countries must take COVID-19 tests on the second and eighth days of their quarantine period, as do permitted arrivals from Red List countries.
      • Crew on international arrivals will need to take (and retake) LFD tests for stays of more than 2 days to avoid quarantine, if it applies based on departure country. Read details online.
    • Luton’s Night Slot Ban (June 1 – Sept. 30)– London’s Luton Airport announced a new Night Slot Ban is taking effect June 1 through Sept. 30, between the hours of 2200Z to 0600Z. London-Stansted Airport will be the preferred alternative. Read full details on our blog.
    • RAF Northolt Airport in London has extended its M-F operating hours by three hours to 0800-2000L. This is a big deal because as the closest GA-accessible to central London, as well as the closest airport to Heathrow, these longer hours make it a much better option for international operators. Universal Aviation Northolt worked hard to make this happen.
    • Don’t miss your UK-APD payments! – Passenger flights out of the UK are subject to Air Passenger Duty (UK-APD) payments, and many operators forget to pay these within the 7-day deadline. Since we have a local office, we can monitor and manage any payments owed on your behalf. Just send a request to our Global Regulatory Team to get started. It’s a fast and easy setup process.
    • A new emissions reporting scheme now applies as a result of Brexit – UK-ETS. If you need help with your UK-ETS monitoring and reporting, we can make this easy for you. Contact our Global Regulatory team directly.
    • See published COVID-19 guidance on safer travel and working principles for airports and aviation operators.
  • Reopen Europe is good resource to reference for country entry requirements.
  • Ask your Universal Trip Support team for a Feasibility Guide to get detailed intelligence for your destination of interest.

Middle East & Africa

Summary info only. Detailed intelligence available – Pre-arrival testing requirements, health forms, quarantine details, local curfews, and scenario-specific info have been omitted from this overview. Ask your Universal Trip Support team for a Feasibility Guide to get detailed intelligence for your destination of interest.

Travelers from variant virus hotspots – Many countries are restricting entry for travelers who have visited a variant virus hotspot, including the UK, Brazil, and South Africa. Travelers from neighboring countries may also be restricted.

  • Afghanistan – US citizens can enter for business. COVID test required, No Exemption for vaccinated passengers. No quarantine.
  • Angola – Non-resident travelers from or who have transited Brazil and India are prohibited. Travel registration form and mandatory quarantine required. Flight ban in effect on India and Brazil.
  • Bahrain – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE: Vaccinated foreign nationals are allowed entry. Test on arrival required and quarantine until results come in. Unless specifically exempted by Bahrain Civil Aviation Affairs, all scheduled passenger flights to/from Bahrain and the following destinations are suspended due to COVID-19 infection prevention: Dhaka (VGFR FIR), Addis Ababa (HAAA FIR), Baku (UBBA FIR), aerodromes in Syria (OSTT FIR), aerodromes in Iraq (ORBB FIR), and aerodromes in Lebanon (OLBB FIR)
  • Botswana – Accessible. No quarantine.
  • Burkina Faso – Locator form and health declaration required.
  • Burundi – U.S. passengers can enter with government approval. Test on arrival and quarantine required.
  • Cape Verde – All int’l flights are allowed. Test on arrival required.
  • Central African Republic – Open with stringent health requirements. U.S. citizens may have to quarantine.
  • Chad – Open. Travelers must surrender their passports and remain in self-isolation for seven days, with an additional test being performed on the seventh day in isolation. Travelers in Chad for fewer than seven days do not need to quarantine.
  • Comoro Is.– Open to U.S. passengers. Health survey, aircraft disinfection, visa, and pre-departure test required. No quarantine. Aircraft disinfection required.
  • Congo, Democratic Republic of (DRC) – Health forms required. Private flights authorized on a case-by-case basis. Testing on arrival required. Outbound test required within 72 hours prior to departure from DRC.
  • Djibouti – U.S. passengers are allowed. Flights must get permission. Mandatory COVID-19 testing on arrival.
  • Egypt – All airports are open. Tourism is limited to resorts. No quarantine. Aircraft disinfection required. Health insurance required.
  • Equatorial Guinea – Some essential business flights allowed. Quarantine required. Travelers from countries with variant strains of the disease may be prohibited from entering the country UFN.
  • Eritrea – U.S. citizens can enter with a valid visa and a special invitation letter. Diplomatic permission required for all landings.
  • Ethiopia – Open with quarantine. Aircraft disinfection required.
  • Gabon – Open, with quarantine. Test upon arrival and on departure required.
  • Ghana – Government authorization is needed for entry.
  • Guinea – U.S. passengers allowed for business. Health declaration form required.
  • Guinea-Bissau – U.S. passengers allowed. No quarantine.
  • Iran – U.S. passengers allowed entry with an Iranian visa. Quarantine may be required. Travelers from Europe will be tested upon arrival and have to quarantine.
  • Israel – Starting July 1, Israel will ease restrictions for foreign nationals and is taking entry requests for organized tourism via commercial flights (GA is not considered at this time). MOFA approval required for GA. Testing on arrival and quarantine required. Health insurance that covers treatment for COVID-19 is required. Our ground handling office in Tel Aviv is monitoring the latest.
  • Jordan – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE – Fully-vaccinated travelers from the following countries do not require PCR test on arrival: Australia, Bahrain, Canada, China, EU, Japan, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Malaysia, Morocco, New Zealand, Oman, Qatar, Russia, South Korea, Taiwan, Tunis, Turkey, UAE, UK and USA. No quarantine. Health insurance, aircraft disinfection and tracing app required.
  • Kenya – Open to 200+ nations/states, including U.S. No quarantine. Test required to exit.
  • Lebanon – Private flights have resumed. Health insurance and test on arrival required. Quarantine required for passengers from high-risk countries.
  • Liberia – Open. Mandatory testing on arrival and departure. Liberia Travel App download and health screening arrival form required.
  • Malawi – Open. Travel Surveillance Forms to be filled out upon arrival.
  • Mali – Open. Health form required. Quarantine not required.
  • Mauritania – Open with new exclusions for countries with COVID mutations. Quarantine and test on arrival required.
  • Mauritius Is. – Approval is on case-by-case basis by Prime Minister’s office. Nationwide lockdown through June 30. Airports will stay open for essential services. No passengers are allowed to enter FIMP through Jun 30. Aircraft disinfection required.
  • Morocco – Effective June 15, Morocco has reopened to fully vaccinated travelers arriving via select commercial airline flights, with no test or quarantine requirements. Countries with high rates of COVID excluded. GA can only access for essential business purposes with preapproval.
  • Mozambique – Open. Business travel permitted (including for U.S. citizens) with approval. Aircraft disinfection required.
  • Namibia – Open.
  • Niger – Open. CAA might require MOFA approval. 7-day self-isolation required.
  • Nigeria – Open. 7-day quarantine required. Health form portal.
  • Oman – Officials have lifted entry restrictions for foreigners with visas. Health insurance and smartphone app required. Testing on arrival and quarantine required.
  • Qatar – U.S. passengers are allowed with permission in advance. Quarantine and smartphone app required.
  • Republic of Congo – Authorities resumed international air travel. 14 days self-isolation at residence or hotel. No quarantine requirements for crew. Must provide a negative test for departure.
  • Rwanda – Charter tourism and business flights allowed. Test on arrival, 24-hr quarantine, passenger locator form, and aircraft disinfection is required.
  • Sao Tome & Principe – Open to domestic and international travel with government approval at least 72 hours prior to arrival. Aircraft disinfection required.
  • Saudi Arabia – Now allowing travelers from the U.S., UK, and other countries. Testing on arrival and smartphone app required. Immunized travelers not require quarantine.See official announcement.
  • Senegal – Open. Passengers must complete a tracking form online and present it on arrival.
  • Sierra Leone – Open. Traveler’s passports will be held by authorities until the results of the on-arrival PCR test have been received. Aircraft disinfection required.
  • Seychelles – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE: First country to implement the Vax PassSee official website for details. Regardless of vaccine status, travelers must provide a negative COVID test taken within 72 hours prior to travel. Exemption from quarantine still applicable to vaccinated travelers.
  • Somalia – Open, with quarantine.
  • South Africa – Allowing travel into/out of South Africa for business, leisure, and other travel. Travelers must be screened on arrival and must install contact tracing app. Aircraft disinfection required.
  • South Sudan – Open. Aircraft disinfection required.
  • Sudan – Open. All travelers must self-isolate for length of stay, up to 14 days
  • Tanzania – Open. Pax will undergo advanced screening on arrival.
  • Togo – Open. COVID-19 test required upon arrival and departure. Quarantine while awaiting results. Aircraft disinfection required. Contact tracing app required.
  • Tunisia – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE – Foreign travelers allowed, subject to approval by CAA. Quarantine not required for those that can provide proof of vaccination or who tested positive for COVID 6 weeks prior to traveling and can provide a medical certificate issued by health authorities.
  • Uganda – All international passenger flights allowed. Aircraft disinfection required. Immunized travelers must still present a negative COVID-19 test result.
  • United Arab Emirates – Open, but entry requirements vary by emirate. Emirates Airlines has a great tool for checking this. Dubai is accessible without any quarantine. Health insurance and tracer app required. More on Dubai here.
  • Yemen – U.S. passengers are allowed entry for business.
  • Zambia – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE: Open. Daily self-monitoring for COVID-19 symptoms is required. Vaccinated travelers with a negative test result are exempt from quarantine requirements.
  • Zimbabwe – Open. Quarantine required. All individuals arriving must quarantine for 10 days.
  • Ask your Universal Trip Support team for a Feasibility Guide to get detailed intelligence for your destination of interest.

Asia-Pacific

Summary info only. Detailed intelligence available – Pre-arrival testing requirements, health forms, quarantine details, local curfews, and scenario-specific info have been omitted from this overview. Ask your Universal Trip Support team for a Feasibility Guide to get detailed intelligence for your destination of interest.

Travelers from variant virus hotspots – Many countries are restricting entry for travelers who have visited a variant virus hotspot, including the UK, Brazil, and South Africa. Travelers from neighboring countries may also be restricted.

  • Our FBOs and ground handling offices in ChinaJapanMaldivesPhilippinesSingaporeSouth Korea, and Thailand all remain open and are supporting missions.
  • American Samoa – Open to U.S. pax with prior permission. Fully vaccinated travelers exempted from quarantine.
  • Armenia – All foreign nationals are allowed entry into Armenia with approval if they meet the Visa requirements. Fully vaccinated travelers with 14 days since final dose of vaccination and proof of vaccination will be exempt from PCR test on arrival.
  • Australia – Still predominantly closed to international travelers, with some exceptions for those from New Zealand.
  • Bangladesh – Testing on arrival required. Passengers must quarantine after arrival. Visa-on-arrival services are suspended until further notice. Aircraft disinfection required.
  • Cambodia – Allowing U.S. citizens and foreign nationals to enter. Visa, insurance, test on arrival, and quarantine required.
  • China – Remains highly restrictive. Testing on arrival and quarantine required for those who can get in. Universal Aviation China is in close contact with local authorities and will be reporting on the latest.
  • Fiji – International arrivals and departures are not permitted.
  • French Polynesia/Tahiti/Bora Bora/Moorea – VACCINE PASSPORT ACTIVE. Open for tourism to U.S. persons or persons that have been in the U.S. for the preceding 15 days. If vaccinated, you’ll need a PCR test prior to arrival, complete the online form, and take an antigen test upon entry. Quarantine not required. Aircraft disinfection required. See details online.
  • Georgia – Special permit required to enter for business purposes. Most foreign nationals must present a vaccination certificate to immigration officials. Online travel form required for entry. Air travel is permitted from any country for individuals who have completed a full course of vaccination against COVID-19.
  • Guam – Open to U.S. passengers. Fully vaccinated passengers with proof of FDA-approved vaccine are exempt from quarantine. COVID testing prior to arrival still required.
  • Hong Kong – Travelers who have stayed in India, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, S. Africa, or Brazil for more than 2 hours in the past 21 days are prohibited from entering Hong Kong. Crew members who have visited these countries in the past 21 days have to self-isolate at designated hotels. All arriving passengers must undergo COVID-19 testing upon arrival and quarantine. Fully vaccinated passengers are eligible for shortened quarantine depending upon travel history.
  • India – Has resumed issuing most types of visas, making business travel now possible with valid reason to enter. Electronic visas (e-Visa), tourist visas, and medical visas are still restricted. Details online. Quarantine requirements vary by region. Testing on arrival and quarantine required depending on travel history.
  • Indonesia – U.S. passengers are allowed only if they have a diplomatic visa, temporary (KITAS) permit, or permanent (KITAP) permit to stay. All arriving passengers must undergo COVID-19 testing upon arrival and quarantine. Mobile app required.
  • Japan – Not open to U.S. travelers. See full list of banned countries. State of emergency extended to June 20.
  • Kyrgyzstan – Open to US. Multiple airports have opened. Forms and test are required.
  • S. Korea – Pax from all countries can enter South Korea with a VISA. Nationals from the USA, UK, Ireland and Mexico do not require a visa. Mandatory screening on arrival, and quarantine required at government-designated facilities. The government will exempt fully vaccinated people from quarantine requirements, provided they received their doses in South Korea and test negative for COVID-19.
  • Laos – U.S. passengers currently are allowed only with special permission. Insurance required. Pre-arrival testing no longer required with proof of vaccination. Test on arrival and quarantine required. Aircraft disinfection required. Passengers must obtain a negative test for COVID-19 within 72 hours before the departure from Laos.
  • Macau – Most foreign nationals not allowed. All foreign visitors and the residents of Mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan who have been to other countries in the past 14 days are not allowed to enter Macau. Quarantine required. Aircraft will need to be disinfected if coming from a high-risk area.
  • Maldives – VACCINE PASSPORT REVOKED. Quarantine is once again required for vaccinated travelers…However, you are free to roam hotel/villa properties.
  • Myanmar – Officials have closed airports nationwide and suspended all international commercial flights through June 30.
  • New Zealand – Still predominately closed. New Zealand removed the quarantine restrictions for travelers from Australia.
  • North Mariana Islands – Open to U.S. passengers for business, tourism, and tech stops. Health form and quarantine required. Fully vaccinated travelers with PCR test are exempted from quarantine.
  • Pakistan – Test on arrival and tracing app required. Quarantine and aircraft disinfection required. There are 23 countries banned from entry.
  • Palau – International traffic has officially resumed but remains restricted.
  • Philippines – Open to foreign nationals with appropriate visas. Must show proof of quarantine hotel for ten days. Subject to COVID-19 testing upon arrival at quarantine hotel on day 6.
  • Singapore – Is in the process of phased re-opening. Check here for eligible travelers and requirements (see “Border/Health Control Measure Summary Table” on the webpage). Pre-arrival and post-arrival testing required. Quarantine based on travel history. Residents and visitors must submit this electronic Health Declaration Card before entering Singapore. TraceTogether App or TokenGoWhere wearable tracer device required. Short-term travelers of (very) high economic interest may be eligible to qualify to enter under the Connect@Singapore program. Our team in Singapore can provide assistance.
  • Sri Lanka – Passenger flights have resumed. Special permission required to enter. Medical insurance, Quarantine and testing on arrival required.
  • Taiwan – Foreign nationals without Alien Resident Certificates are prohibited from entering through at least June 18. Depending on departure country, quarantine requirements vary. Leisure not allowed.
  • Thailand – Non-Thais are no longer required to present a fit to fly Certificate to enter Thailand. 14-day quarantine for all arrivals, with proof of health insurance required. Aircraft disinfection required.
  • Turkmenistan – Flights remain suspended. U.S. passengers are allowed for business, with prior approval through diplomatic channels. Testing upon arrival and quarantine is required in a state-run facility required.
  • Uzbekistan – Arrivals from any “Yellow Zone” or “Red Zone” countries (like U.S.) can enter with pre-testing and additional requirements. Test on arrival required.
  • Vietnam – Flights require special approval from Vietnam National CDC. Quarantine required.
  • Ask your Universal Trip Support team for a Feasibility Guide to get detailed intelligence for your destination of interest.

Additional Resources

Visit your country’s local health department. Other resources to check include:


Previous updates

June 10, 2021

Spain & France are OPEN 

Biggest news this week is that both Spain and France have opened up to leisure travel from non-EU countries. Details on entry requirements are below. This was me on a team Zoom call when the news first broke:

In addition…yesterday, we successfully managed the first direct leisure flight into Paris from the U.S. that the city has had in over a year! Our Universal Aviation FBO in Paris was excited to welcome that flight, and everything was reported as smooth sailing.

Major News, Trends, Insights & Other Stuff –

  • France Opens. Book ASAP. – Vaccinated travelers from non-EU-countries, including the U.S. can now enter for leisure. Proof of vaccination and a negative COVID test are required to avoid quarantine. Details are on our blog. There’s been a HUGE amount of pent-up demand for France, so if you are planning a trip, get your arrangements in NOW.
  • Spain Opens – Travelers from “at-risk” zones, including the U.S. can now enter for any reason. Travelers must provide either proof of vaccination, a negative COVID test, or proof of recovery. Details are on our blog.
  • Coming Soon: Portugal – A Portuguese official has announced that the country plans on allowing fully-vaccinated U.S. tourists to enter as early as next week. Offical details pending.
  • “I’ll Take the EU Sampler Platter” – We’re now seeing a big increase in multi-destination EU trips being planned and booked. Passengers are asking what’s open and picking a smorgasbord of destinations to visit – like they’re ordering off the tapas menu on an empty stomach. Revenge Travel 2021 is in full effect!
  • Shortages: Mediterranean Parking, Hotels & Ground Transportation – Preferred options are very competitive across the Med. Make arrangements ASAP for best options and be flexible.
    • Parking – Get all your Med parking requests in with us ASAP. For Greece, remember that authorities won’t accept any request until 2 weeks prior to arrival. By getting in your request now, Universal Aviation Greece will secure the best option that they can for you as soon as your booking window opens. Just keep in mind that the best available option may not be your preferred.
    • Great Hotels vs. Rewards Programs – Your hotel options will be dictated by where you can secure overnight parking and what hotel rooms are available. In the Med, this often means your best option may not be tied your preferred rewards program. Our Hotels Team has agreements with the big chains and many independents to help you secure a great option with nice perks, no matter where you overnight. However…we strongly recommend staying flexible and not limiting yourself to one chain.
    • Ground Transportation – Limited availability is happening all across the islands. Sign up for a free Drivania account to check vehicle availability and pricing at any destination you’re looking at. Book through your Universal Trip Support team to keep the ground transportation arrangement connected to your Universal-managed trip.
  • EU Green Passport – The eagerly anticipated EU Green Passport is now live in some EU countries for citizens of select EU countries. Details are still being worked out on how it will be extended to citizens of non-EU countries. In the meantime, Reopen Europe has improved its online tool for helping you assess entry requirements into the EU based on your trip scenario.
  • Med Reopening Schedule – June 1 was the official start of the Mediterranean peak season. Here’s the reopening status for the most popular ones:
  • The U.S.-UK Travel Corridor – Airlines have been advocting this for this. Now U.S. President Biden and UK British Prime Minister Boris Johnson have agreed on a new Atlantic Charter to expedite opening up travel between the two countries.
  • Canada to Ease Restrictions on Returning Residents – It looks like Canadians get to enjoy vacation abroad, too. It was announced on Wednesday that fully vaccinated citizens and residents returning to Canada will be exempt from quarantine in early July. The official regulatory update is still pending.
  • Charter Demand Exceed Pre-Pandemic Levels – Charter booking numbers into international destinations are exceeding what they were pre-pandemic. Demand for charter flights into Europe is surging. Similarly, ForwardKeys is reporting that U.S. passengers are willing to pay more for premium seats with more space on commercial flights to Europe.
  • Revenge Travel 2021 KPIs – All of our in-house and market data continues to show pent up and growing demand for summer travel. Internally, we continue to see week-over-week increases all across the board:
    •  Trip Feasibility Guide requests and related-inquires, with top ICAO searches being beach destinations proximal to the U.S., open Med countries, and the UK.
    •  Int’l Trip Cost Estimate requests. – Heavy volume for Europe.
    •  Flight departments with 1st int’l trip planned since March 2020.
    •  Universal-managed int’l trips booked – We had another record-breaking day last week, as well as a record-breaking week. Charter demand is surging.
    •  Int’l trips booked <1 week out – Massive number of last-minute trips for U.S. Memorial Day Weekend.
    •  Int’l trips booked >4 weeks out – Growing confidence in stability of regulations (esp. Europe).
    •  Int’l trips booked >8 weeks out – Notable increase in bookings related to high-traffic events.
    •  Multi-destination int’l trips – Many trips planned for multiple stops across Europe.
    •  EU leisure trips – Now outpacing business purpose trips.
    •  Hotel reservations – Europe #1 this week.
    •  uvGO OFP int’l flight plans calculated by users. Big increase in U.S.-Europe and Europe-Europe calculations.
    •  Trip-related calls & emails logged.
  • The Vaccine Passport Watch Party 💉🛂🥳 – More countries joined the party this week. You can track the list of countries adopting some form of a vaccine passport/exemption policy on our blog.
  • Save the Date: Next Ops Webinar Meetup (June 16 @ noon Central) – The focus will be Mediterranean and UK ops. I’ll have the official invite to send you tomorrow.

June 3, 2021

Major News, Trends, Insights & Other Stuff –

  • The UK Green List Tightens – News just came out that no new countries were added to the UK Green List of safe countries, and the list got smaller with Portugal being removed. The UK is a high-interest destination that many travelers from the U.S, Canada, and EU have been waiting to visit. Unfortunately, quarantine and repeated COVID testing is still required when entering from a non-Green list country, including for UK citizens. Another review of the Green List is expected around June 18.
  • Luton Night Slot Ban (June 1 – Sept. 30) – In somewhat surprising news, London’s Luton Airport announced a new Night Slot Ban is taking effect June 1 through Sept. 30, between the hours of 2200Z to 0600Z. London-Stansted Airport will be the preferred alternative. Read full details on our blog.
  • EU Green Passport – The eagerly anticipated EU Green Passport is now live in some EU countries for citizens of select EU countries. Details are still being worked out on how it will be extended to citizens of non-EU countries.
  • Med Reopening Schedule – June 1 was the official start of the Mediterranean peak season. Here’s the reopening status for the most popular ones:
  • Med Parking & Hotels – Get your requests in ASAP as preferred options are increasingly becoming competitive.
  • EU Corridor Access – Cooridor access is available for travelers who don’t have a direct way in. We recommend consulting with us prior to any mission so that we can help you fully vet your options.
  • FAA Downgrades Mexico – The recent FAA downgrade of Mexico’s aviation safety rating to Cat2 status is creating new challenges for Mexican charter operators trying to operate into the U.S. Our Global Regulatory Services team is providing assistance.
  • Upcoming High-traffic Events – The calendar is populating rapidly with events that draw international traffic like the UEFA EURO Championships (London, June), Cannes Film Festival (French Riviera, July), Milan Furniture Festival (Milan, Sept.), Cannes Yachting Festival (French Riviera, Sept.), Prix de L’Arc de Triomphe (Paris, Oct.), F1’s, fashion weeks, business conferences, major music festivals, etc.
  • ACTION NEEDED: WEF Davos 2022 – While WEF Singapore (Aug) was canceled, the World Economic forum returns to Davos, Jan 17-22. This is an event where operators normally secure parking a whole year in advance. Get your requests in NOW. Don’t be last in line.
  • Revenge Travel 2021 KPIs – All of our in-house and market data continues to show pent up and growing demand for summer travel. Internally, we continue to see week-over-week increases all across the board:
    •  Trip Feasibility Guide requests and related-inquires, with top ICAO searches being beach destinations proximal to the U.S., open Med countries, and the UK.
    •  Int’l Trip Cost Estimate requests. – Heavy volume for Europe.
    •  Flight departments with 1st int’l trip planned since March 2020.
    •  Universal-managed int’l trips booked – Another record week since the pandemic, thanks to U.S. Memorial Day Weekend.
    •  Int’l trips booked <1 week out – Massive number of last-minute trips for U.S. Memorial Day Weekend.
    •  Int’l trips booked >4 weeks out – Growing confidence in stability of regulations (esp. Europe).
    •  Int’l trips booked >8 weeks out – Notable increase in bookings related to high-traffic events.
    •  Hotel reservations – Europe #1 this week.
    •  Requests for Regulatory Services – Lapsed and new blanket permits, BOEs, VWPs, NIWs, etc.
    •  uvGO OFP int’l flight plans calculated by users. Big increase in U.S.-Europe and Europe-Europe calculations.
    •  Trip-related calls & emails logged.
  • The Vaccine Passport Watch Party 💉🛂🥳 – More countries joined the party this week. You can track the list of countries adopting some form of a vaccine passport/exemption policy on our blog.

May 26, 2021

Major News, Trends, Insights & Other Stuff –

  • Med Peak Season Starts Next Week – June is the official start of peak season, and demand is high among both scheduled commercial and private travelers. See our Revenge Travel 2021 KPIs below.
  • Med Reopening Schedule – Most Mediterranean countries have come out publicly with their plans to reopen in time for tourist season, ahead of the EC’s guidance. Here’s a quick synopsis of the most popular ones:
  • Med Parking & Hotels – Get your requests in ASAP. Preferred options are getting competitive for short-notice trips, and trip bookings from June through Sept. are coming in fast. Long-notice charter bookings are also strong this year.
  • EU Corridor Access – More access corridors for certain countries in the EU have opened to travelers who don’t have a direct way in. We recommend consulting with us prior to any mission so that we can help you fully vet your options.
  • The UK’s Restrictions for Crew and Pax – Last week, the UK launched its new Red, Amber, and Green list rules for entering the UK. We’ve summarized the key things you need to know on our blog.
  • Record Season for Yacht Charters – As mentioned last week, the charter yacht market is forecasting this summer to be a record season. The Med (especially eastern), the Caribbean, and Costa Rica will be where the super yachts are positioning. If you’re rolling in Dogecoin and/or plywood, you may be able to afford chartering one of these beast boats that the Robb Report recently highlighted. (In my case… I’m limited to “chartering” some arm floaties at the community pool.)
  • Expired U.S. Passports for Return Travel – CBP issued this bulletin announcing that U.S. citizens holding a U.S. passport that expired on or after January 1, 2020 may still be able to use their expired U.S. passport for direct return travel to the United States until December 31, 2021.
  • ACTION NEEDED: WEF Davos 2022 – While WEF Singapore (Aug) was canceled, the World Economic forum returns to Davos, Jan 17-22. This is an event where operators normally secure parking a whole year in advance. Get your requests in NOW. Don’t be last in line.
  • Revenge Travel 2021 KPIs – All of our in-house and market data continues to show pent up and growing demand for summer travel. Internally, we continue to see week-over-week increases all across the board:
    •  Trip Feasibility Guide requests and related-inquires, with top ICAO searches being beach destinations proximal to the U.S., open Med countries, and the UK.
    •  Int’l Trip Cost Estimate requests. – Heavy volume for Europe.
    •  Flight departments with 1st int’l trip planned since March 2020.
    •  Universal-managed int’l trips booked – Another record week since the pandemic.
    •  Int’l trips booked <1 week out – Massive spike in short-notice trips to open Med countries, especially Greece, Croatia & Cyprus.
    •  Int’l trips booked >4 weeks out – Growing confidence in stability of regulations (esp. Europe).
    •  Int’l trips booked >8 weeks out – Notable increase in bookings related to high-traffic events.
    •  Hotel reservations – Europe #1 this week.
    •  Requests for Regulatory Services – Lapsed and new blanket permits, BOEs, VWPs, NIWs, etc.
    •  uvGO OFP int’l flight plans calculated by users. Big increase in U.S.-Europe and Europe-Europe calculations.
    •  Trip-related calls & emails logged.
  • The Vaccine Passport Watch Party 💉🛂🥳 – More countries joined the party this week. You can track the list of countries adopting some form of a vaccine passport/exemption policy on our blog.

May 20, 2021

The EU’s Reopening Gains Momentum

The biggest news this week is that we’re another step closer to the EU fully opening for leisure. Vaccinated travelers from the U.S. and other countries will be welcomed in under the EC’s recommended guidance. Final approval and the official announcement could come within the next week.

Major News, Trends, Insights & Other Stuff –

  • Mediterranean Reopening Schedule – Most Mediterranean countries have come out publicly with their plans to reopen in time for tourist season, ahead of the EC’s guidance. Here’s a quick synopsis of the most popular ones:
  • UK Reopening Schedule – This week, the UK launched its new Red, Amber, and Green list rules for entering the UK. The U.S., Canada, and most EU countries currently sit on the Amber List, which mean a 10-day quarantine for travelers arriving from these countries, including Brits returning from popular vacation destinations like Spain. With travel season on the horizon and the UEFA EURO 2020 Championship (yes, “2020” vs. “2021”) scheduled to start in June, the UK is under pressure to add more countries to the green (quarantine-free) list. The list is re-evaluated every three weeks, so we expect more news around May 28. Stay tuned.
  • Intra-EU corridors – While we anxiously await the EC’s guidance and how countries will enact it, there are potential travel corridors into Schengen countries that are currently restricting direct travel from third countries (non-Schengen). The process to corridor-in requires first routing through a Schengen country that is open to direct third-country travel, prior to routing to you final destination country. If you are looking for these options, please reach out to us to discuss further.
  • Increasing Demand for Northern EU – Beyond the UK and the Med, we’re seeing a pickup in travel inquires for northern EU countries. Germany just reopened to vaccinated travelers last week, and we’ve immediately seen a jump in summer bookings there.
  • Charter Yacht Market Preps for Record Season – The Robb Report published this insightful article how the charter yacht market is strategizing to take advantage of what is expected to be a record summer, despite the travel restrictions. Some yachts that normally would be heading across the Atlantic are staying back in the Caribbean to maximize booking there. Others are being repositioned to the Eastern Med where countries like Greece and Croatia have less uncertainty right now than France and Spain. And Costa Rica is predicted to be a new hot yacht destination.
  • The Mediterranean Hotel Blitz Continues – Same as last week, bookings through our Hotels Team for June/July trips remains high in anticipation of competition with commercial travel. FYI…We’re a great hotel resource to lean on, and you’ll often get better rates, more amenities, more flexible check-in/out and cancellation options, and access to more room availability than by going direct.
  • Med Parking Requests – Get yours in as soon as schedule is known. We’re seeing a lot of requests coming in for preferred options across the Mediterranean, and the charter folks have been especially active this year in grabbing spots running up through the end of July.
  • Revenge Travel 2021 – All of our in-house and market data continues to show pent up and growing demand for summer travel. Internally, we continue to see week-over-week increases all across the board:
    •  Trip Feasibility Guide requests and related-inquires.
    •  Int’l Trip Cost Estimate requests.
    •  Flight departments with 1st int’l trip planned since March 2020.
    •  Universal-managed int’l trips booked – We just had the busiest weekend day for bookings since the pandemic.
    •  Int’l trips booked >4 weeks out – Confidence in stability of regulations (esp. Europe).
    •  Int’l trips booked >8 weeks out – Same as above.
    •  Hotel reservations – Europe #1 this week.
    •  Requests for Regulatory Services – Lapsed and new blanket permits, VWPs, NIWs, etc.
    •  uvGO OFP int’l flight plans calculated by users.
    •  Trip-related calls & emails logged.
  • REMINDER: Your Tokyo Olympics Parking Preferences – While the IOC is still deciding on whether or not it will allow sponsors/VIPs to attend, Japan CAA wants to gauge aircraft parking demand for the Games. CAA is asking that you apply for parking now. If the IOC decides to allow VIPs, your application is in. If not, they’ll just cancel it. Get with us ASAP.
  • The Vaccine Passport Watch Party 💉🛂🥳 – Germany and New Caledonia joined the party this week. You can track the list of countries adopting some form of a vaccine passport/exemption policy on our blog.

May 13, 2021

We saw a massive jump in trip requests for the Med this week with operators starting to lock in preferred options for summer peak season.

Similarly, scheduled commercial ticket sales to Greece have spiked in response to the country’s reopening, as reported by ForwardKeys. Italy will announce its reopening any day now, and we’re expecting the same.

The BIG TAKEAWAY for this week…START PLANNING NOW to secure what you can (aircraft parking, slots, hotels, etc.). Or…in the case of Greece…get your requests in with us ASAP so we can secure your best options as soon as your 2-week pre-arrival booking window opens.

In yesterday’s webinar on European summer ops (which had >300 attendees), we heard similar advice from our European panel of experts. EBAA Chairman Juergen Wiese was part of that panel, and he had some really informative insights to share. Watch here.

Major News, Trends, Insights & Other Stuff –

  • Mediterranean Reopening Schedule – Most Mediterranean countries have come out publicly with their plans to reopen in time for tourist season. Here’s a quick synopsis of the most popular ones:
  • The Mediterranean Hotel Blitz – Booking requests through our Hotels Team jumped massively this week with operators securing rooms for trips 4-8 weeks out, versus the <2 week out window that has been the norm during the pandemic. This is in anticipation of competition with commercial travelers for the Med. Just a reminder…through our preferred agreements with many hotel chains and independents, we can often get you better rates, more amenities, more flexible check-in/out and cancellation options, and access to more room availability than by going direct. We’re an awesome hotel resource to lean on. Completely bizav focused.
  • Universal Aviation expands to Mykonos – Universal Aviation Mykonos began ground operations this week. You now have dedicated Universal Aviation staff directly supporting your missions to the island. We’re expecting a very busy summer in Mykonos, which is currently ranked the No. 1 destination seeing a rebound in traffic since the pandemic.
  • Med Parking Requests – OK…this is a copy/paste from last week, but it’s important. Get your Mediterranean parking requests into us as soon as your schedule is known for preferred options. Spain, Southern France, Italy, Croatia, and Turkey can all be booked now. For Greece, parking is booked no more than 2 weeks prior to arrival on a first come/served basis, so we need to be ready to grab you a spot the minute your booking window opens.
  • New UK entry requirements effective May 17 – The UK will have new entry regulations effective May 17. If you come from a country on the green list and haven’t been to a red or amber country in the preceeding 10-day period, then no quarantine is needed. Testing still required. The U.S. is currently on the amber list, which means a 10-day quarantine unless you pay to test out early after day 5.
  • U.S. CDC Approves Home Test for Int’l Arrivals – On May 7, the CDC updated its Order to allow self-administered COVID tests (aka home tests) to qualify for int’l arrivals to the U.S. Note that the CDC has guidance on what home tests will be allowed.
  • Revenge Travel 2021 – All of our in-house and market data continues to show pent up and growing demand for summer travel. Internally, we continue to see week-over-week increases all across the board:
    •  Trip Feasibility Guide requests and related-inquires
    •  Int’l Trip Cost Estimate requests
    •  Flight departments with 1st int’l trip planned since March 2020
    •  Universal-managed int’l trips booked – We saw another record day since the start of the pandemic.
    •  Int’l trips booked >4 weeks out – Confidence in stability of regulations (esp. Europe).
    •  Int’l trips booked >8 weeks out – Same as above.
    •  Requests for Regulatory Services – Lapsed and new blanket permits, VWPs, NIWs, etc.
    •  uvGO OFP int’l flight plans calculated by users
    •  Trip-related calls & emails logged
  • ACTION NEEDED: Your Tokyo Olympics Parking Preferences – While the IOC is still deciding on whether or not it will allow sponsors/VIPs to attend, Japan CAA wants to gauge aircraft parking demand for the Games. CAA is asking that you apply for parking now. If the IOC decides to allow VIPs, your application is in. If not, they’ll just cancel it. Get with us ASAP.
  • Yesterday’s Ops Webinar Meetup – If you missed yesterday’s webinar on European summer ops you can watch it here. EBAA Chairman Juergen Wiese and our experts from Spain, Greece, and Italy shared their insights with the over 300 people in attendance. There is some really good information in here. It’s worth the watch.
  • The Vaccine Passport Watch Party 💉🛂🥳 – The party is just warming up! BVI and Bahrain have arrived. You can track the list of countries adopting some form of a vaccine passport/exemption policy on our blog.

May 7, 2021

  • Extended Hours at London-Northolt – The airport will be extending its M-F operating hours by three hours to 0800-2000L, effective May 17. This is a big deal because as the closest GA-accessible to central London, as well as the closest airport to Heathrow, these longer hours make it a much better option for international operators. Universal Aviation Northolt worked hard to make this happen.
  • Mediterranean Reopening Schedule – Most Mediterranean countries have come out publicly with their plans to reopen in time for tourist season. Here’s a quick synopsis of the most popular ones:
  • Unofficial EU Travel Corridors – The opening of Greece and Croatia to leisure and business flights from the U.S and other non-EU countries has now created the possibility of corridor access into other parts of the EU. Consult with us if this is an option you want to explore.
  • Pro Tip: Med Parking Requests – Get your Mediterranean parking requests into us as soon as your schedule is known for preferred options. Spain, Southern France, Italy, Croatia, and Turkey can all be booked now. For Greece, parking is booked no more than 2 weeks prior to arrival on a first come/served basis, so we need to be ready to grab you a spot the minute your booking window opens. Shops and restaurants have started reopening in Greece, and after Greek Easter (May 2) is usually when we see the official summer kick off.
  • Reminder: Greece Charter Blanket Permits Now Available – After shutting down blanket permits for more than a year, Greece is once again accepting applications now that it’s open for tourism. You can read more and get started with yours online.
  • Revenge Travel 2021 – All of our in-house and market data continues to show pent up and growing demand for summer travel. Internally, we continue to see increases all across the board:
    •  Trip Feasibility Guide requests and related-inquires
    •  Int’l Trip Cost Estimate requests
    •  Flight departments with 1st int’l trip planned since March 2020
    •  Universal-managed int’l trips booked
    •  uvGO OFP int’l flight plans calculated by users
    •  Trip-related calls & emails logged
  • India Travel Bans – Many countries, including the U.S., are now enforcing restrictions on travelers from India.
  • ACTION NEEDED: Your Tokyo Olympics Parking Preferences – While the IOC is still deciding on whether or not it will allow sponsors/VIPs to attend, Japan CAA wants to gauge aircraft parking demand for the Games. CAA is asking that you apply for parking now. If the IOC decides to allow VIPs, your application is in. If not, they’ll just cancel it. Get with us ASAP.
  • The Vaccine Passport Watch Party 💉🛂🥳 – The list of countries making it easier for vaccinated travelers continues to grow weekly. This week’s additions include: Denmark (but not for U.S. travelers yet), Serbia, Slovenia (EU only). You can track the list of countries adopting some form of a vaccine passport/exemption policy on our blog.

April 29, 2021

  • Revenge Travel 2021 – All of our in-house and market data continues to show pent up and growing demand for summer travel. Internally, we continue to see increases all across the board:
    •  Trip Feasibility Guide requests
    •  Int’l Trip Cost Estimate requests
    •  Flight departments with 1st int’l trip planned since March 2020
    •  Universal-managed int’l trips booked
    •  uvGO OFP int’l flight plans calculated by users
    •  Trip-related calls & emails logged
  • New U.S CBP Documentation Provided for Arrivals – Part 91 arrivals into the U.S will begin receiving this new document [PDF] with their landing rights packages at select ports. It basically covers roles and responsibilities for both operator and CBP for int’l arrivals. NO ACTION is needed when you get this. It’s just good-to-know info to have in your back pocket.
  • EC Recommends Opening to U.S in June – The European Commission recently confirmed in an interview that it plans to open Europe to vaccinated U.S. travelers in June. The EC is a little late to the party with its recommendations, as many EU countries have already announced their plans.
  • Greece Charter Blanket Permits Now Available – After shutting down blanket permits for more than a year, Greece is once again accepting applications now that it’s open for tourism. You can read more and get started with yours online.
  • Pro Tip: Med Parking Requests – Get your Mediterranean parking requests into us as soon as your schedule is known for preferred options. Spain, Southern France, Italy, Croatia, and Turkey can all be booked now. For Greece, parking is booked no more than 2 weeks prior to arrival on a first come/served basis, so we need to be ready to grab you a spot the minute your booking window opens. Shops and restaurants have started reopening in Greece, and after Greek Easter (May 2) is usually when we see the official summer kick off.
  • ACTION NEEDED: Your Tokyo Olympics Parking Preferences – While the IOC is still deciding on whether or not it will allow sponsors/VIPs to attend, Japan CAA wants to gauge aircraft parking demand for the Games. CAA is asking that you apply for parking now. If the IOC decides to allow VIPs, your application is in. If not, they’ll just cancel it. Get with us ASAP.
  • Pro Tip: Validate/Update Your Ops Profile Info Now – If you haven’t been flying internationally and plan to, don’t wait to update your ops profile info with us. Now is the time to make sure we have all your current documentation, aircraft specs, crew info, comms preferences, etc. before summer peak season is in full swing. You’ll be ready to go when that trip comes in.
  • The Vaccine Passport Watch Party 💉🛂🥳 – The list of countries making it easier for vaccinated travelers continues to rise weekly. This week’s additions include: Barbados, Croatia, Grenada, and Spain. Cyprus expanded theirs by adding the U.S. Ireland eased its mandatory hotel quarantine for vaccinated travelers. You can track the list of countries adopting some form of a vaccine passport/exemption policy on our blog.

April 22, 2021

  • BIG NEWS: The Med Just Opened 🙌 – Greece officially opened to the U.S., EU, and UK this week with NO RESTRICTIONS for vaccinated travelers! Parking requests have already started streaming in. COMING SOON: France told CBS it will start reopening in May, and Spain announced similar plans to begin reopening.
  • Pro Tip: Med Parking Requests – Get your Mediterranean parking requests into us as soon as your schedule is known, as preferred options will be competitive. We’ve had a running 2-week spike now in requests for long term parking in Southern France, Italy, and Spain…which can all be booked now. For Greece, parking is booked no more than 2 weeks prior to arrival on a first come/served basis, so we need to be ready to grab you a spot the minute your booking window opens.
  • More French Islands Open – St. Barts is now open to vaccinated travelers, with preapproval made through your hotel or villa. French Polynesia (Tahiti/Bora Bora/Moorea) is still expected to open May 1. Other French islands remain closed.
  • Revenge Travel 2021 – The pent-up demand for int’l travel continues to trend higher. We’re seeing week-over-week increases in trip feasibility questions and bookings. We’re also seeing a spike in operators who are planning their first major intercontinental trip since the pandemic started. We expect to see these trends continue with Europe and the Mediterranean now starting to reopen to foreign travelers.
  • Pro Tip: Validate/Update Your Ops Profile Info Now – If you haven’t been flying internationally and plan to, don’t wait to update your ops profile info with us. Now is the time to make sure we have all your current documentation, aircraft specs, crew info, comms preferences, etc. before summer peak season is in full swing. You’ll be ready to go when that trip comes in.
  • The Vaccine Passport Watch Party 💉🛂🥳 – More countries such as Anguilla, Bermuda, Greece, the Maldives, St. Barts, and Sri Lanka have made it easier for vaccinated travelers to enter and move about. We’ve also confirmed on a trip we supported this week that Iceland will accept CDC vaccination cards, not just the EEA/EFTA vax cards as stated in the regs. You can track the list of countries adopting some form of a vaccine passport/exemption policy on our blog.
  • BIG NEWS: U.S. Laxes for Foreign Crew – Earlier this month, the U.S. State Department quietly released a buried update allowing National Interest Waivers (NIWs) to be issued to foreign crew seeking entry to the U.S. for the purposes of training or aircraft pickup, delivery, or maintenance – despite their travel history. Crew must have a B-1/B-2, B-1, or M-1 visa, or Visa Waiver Program authorization to qualify. This is a big one many in the business aviation community have been asking for. We have extensive expertise with NIWs and can assist.

April 15, 2021

  • Revenge Travel 2021 – I’m going to start a business selling #RevengeTravel2021 T-shirts because this is how the second half of this year is looking like based on the pent-up demand we continue to see. We’re fielding more trip feasibility requests than we’ve seen since the start of the pandemic, with Europe being the hot ticket this summer.
  • Pro Tip: Mediterranean Parking Requests – Get those requests into us as soon as your schedule is known, as preferred options will be competitive. We are seeing a spike in requests for long term parking in Southern France, followed by Italy and Spain. For Greece, parking is booked no more than 2 weeks prior to arrival on a first come/served basis, so we need to be ready to grab you a spot the minute your booking window opens.
  • EU Green Passport Program – There was more news this week that this continues to move forward with 13 countries now agreeing on the framework of the program. The EU is pushing to have this ready in May for tourist destinations (e.g., Mediterranean) and fully implemented by end of June.
  • The Vaccine Passport Watch Party 💉🛂🥳 – Several new countries such as Iceland and Ecuador have made it easier for vaccinated travelers to enter. Barbados will allow you to bypass quarantine after May 8. You can track the list of countries adopting some form of a vaccine passport/exemption policy on our blog.
  • U.S. Visa Update – U.S. CBP has published a bulletin announcing a variety of U.S. visa holders have been granted blanket national interest exceptions to the current entry restrictions on travelers from suspended regions. Note: B1 and B2 visas are not exempt.
  • 🦗 Crickets on the Big Events – The 2021 World Economic Forum and Tokyo Olympics are rapidly approaching, but authorities remain silent on requirements. Our teams in Singapore and Japan are on top of it, and we’ll let you know as soon as anything is announced.
  • Rumor Mill: Greece Reopening Soon – Greece officially said it would open mid-May, but Reuters is reporting that an unnamed gov’t official said it could open next week to U.S., UK, and EU travelers. Our FBO ground support offices in Greece will be reporting as soon as something official drops.
  • Ireland tightens for U.S./Canada – Ireland announced that anyone entering the country from the U.S. or Canada, or has recently visited or transited either, is required to quarantine for 10-14 days. Quarantining for just length of stay (e.g., 2 nights) is not an option. You’re stuck. Crew are exempt from this new requirement.
  • French Polynesia to Open; Others Close – Good news came this week from French Polynesia, which will be reopening its borders May 1. This puts popular destinations Tahiti, Bora Bora and Moorea back in the game. On the flip side, Bangladesh, the Philippines, and Oman are once again prohibiting foreigners. I’ll take that trade off…This one’s still on my bucket list.
  • Israel loosens – Israel has been another notable mover this week, as it has been pretty much closed for the past year. The country will start allowing a limited number of foreign nationals in for tourism via commercial flights. GA still has to wait.
  • Yesterday’s Zoom Meetup – If you missed yesterday’s webinar, you can watch it on our blog.

April 8, 2021

Restrictions remain mostly stable, with some countries retightening or extending lockdowns in response to outbreaks – everything is basically the same while we wait for vaccination numbers to increase and a major int’l vax pass program to materialize.

We’re continuing to field lots of inquiries for trips to Europe – for both leisure and business flights. The number of planned EU and UK trips in the backlog continues to grow. If you’re considering one, I can help you navigate best options.

More detailed information is available through our Feasibility Guides.


April 1, 2021

  • New US APIS Requirements – All GA travelers are now required to provide additional details, including primary phone number and email address, for contact tracing purposes when coming from Guinea or the DROC in response to Ebola. Scheduled airlines have already been doing this. Airport funneling from these destinations is also in effect. While these destinations aren’t the most popular for GA travel, it’s not unlikely that we could see the APIS data collection portion of this requirement expanded to cover arrivals from more countries (e.g., for contact tracing other diseases). Note that Private and Charter flights will have different processes for complying with this based on how APIS information is currently transmitted for each of these two flight types. Read more about this on our blog.
  • The Vaccine Passport Watch Party 💉🛂🥳 – The list of countries adopting some form of a vaccine passport/exemption policy grew this week, with Cyprus and Thailand joining the club. You can track the running list of these on our blog.
  • Don’t Laminate Your Vaccination Card – While some businesses are offering free lamination services for COVID vaccination cards, we recommend not doing it so that you can add your boosters to your card when you get them. Instead, use a plastic badge sleeve. I think I have a box full of them somewhere from every NBAA tradeshow I attended prior to COVID.
  • Prepare for a Busy Summer Travel Season – The uptick in vaccinations, the influx of stimulus money, and pent-up demand are fueling what the airlines project to be a busy summer travel season for the typical beachy destinations. Plan for congestion and start making arrangements as soon as your schedule is known for best options.
  • 4th Wave vs. EU Travel Demand – Inquiries for travel to Europe remains strong, but it’s just the essential, can’t-wait business flights that are happening now. We’re tracking a growing backlog of planned trips to Europe once restrictions ease and things start to open back up.
  • Get Smart on Lateral Flow Device (LFD) Testing – We’re starting to see LFDs pop up in the regulations for various countries. Watch a 2-min video here on how to take the test. Notably…starting April 6 in the UK, crew on international arrivals will need to start taking (and retaking) these tests for stays of more than 2 days to avoid quarantine.
  • Peak Period Priority Lists – Let me know if you plan on flying into any destinations during these peak periods. Our local offices are maintaining priority lists to secure best options (parking, slots, etc.) as soon as details are available:
    • Mediterranean Summer Peak Season 2021 (late May-Sept 2021) – Spain, French Riviera (which is locked down for 30 days as of March 19), Italy, Croatia, Greece, Turkey
    • Japan Summer Olympics (July 23-Aug 8, 2021) – While this will be a “no fans” event, Tokyo Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (TOCOG) is considering allowing VIPs/sponsors attend.
    • World Economic Forum – Singapore (Aug 17-20, 2021)
    • Beijing Winter Olympics (Feb 4-20, 2022)

 

March 25, 2021

Major News, Trends, Insights & Other Stuff –

  • Do you fly for a Tokyo Olympics VIP? – While general spectators won’t be attending, the Tokyo Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (TOCOG) is having ongoing conversations whether VIPs, including sponsors, will be allowed to attend. Universal Aviation Japan is in close discussion with Authorities to stay on top of the latest.
  • Int’l Traffic Demand – Based on trip feasibility inquires we’ve received and trips booked, the Caribbean, Mexico and Costa Rica will continue to dominate the top international destinations for the next two weeks. Inquiries for EU travel remains strong, with many operators waiting to get in. We’re also seeing more feasibility requests coming in for Asia-Pacific – the most since the beginning of the pandemic.
  • ProPilot PRASE Survey – This is the last week to vote in ProPilot’s annual PRASE survey. If you think we’ve done a good job this year for International Trip Planning, or if you have had a good experience at any of our FBOs, please consider voting a 10 for us in the relevant categories. While we don’t put a lot of weight in these trade surveys, they do create nice recognition and celebratory moments for our operational teams when they rank. Fill out the PDF survey online.
  • The Vaccine Passport Watch Party 💉🛂🥳 – The list of countries adopting some form of a vaccine passport/exemption policy grew this week. You can track the running list of these on our blog.
  • Peak Period Priority Lists – Let me know if you plan on flying into any destinations during these peak periods. Our local offices are maintaining priority lists to secure best options (parking, slots, etc.) as soon as details are available:
    • Mediterranean Summer Peak Season 2021 (late May-Sept 2021) – Spain, French Riviera (which is locked down for 30 days as of March 19), Italy, Croatia, Greece, Turkey
    • Japan Summer Olympics (July 23-Aug 8, 2021)
    • World Economic Forum – Singapore (Aug 17-20, 2021)
    • Beijing Winter Olympics (Feb 4-20, 2022)

 

March 18, 2021

  • ProPilot PRASE Survey – ProPilot is running its annual PRASE survey. If you think we’ve done a good job this year for International Trip Planning, or if you have had a good experience at any of our FBOs, please consider voting a 10 for us in the relevant categories. While we don’t put a lot of weight in these trade surveys, they do create nice recognition and celebratory moments for our operational teams when then rank. Fill out the PDF survey online.
  • Spring Break Travel – This week and next, we’re seeing a lot of flights into the all the expected Spring Break hotspots in the Caribbean, Mexico and Costa Rica.
  • EU Demand – There continues to be pent-up demand for essential travel to Europe. The recent COVID surge in Europe that forced Italy into lockdown hasn’t helped. We’re hopeful the EU will have a clear plan on its digital vaccine passport program soon so that operators can begin planning.
  • French Territories – St. Bart’s and French Polynesia remain closed, despite rumors that they may reopen. These are popular destinations, and many operators are waiting to get in. We’re continuing to monitor.
  • Vaccine Passports – The list of countries adopting some form of a vaccine passport/exemption policy didn’t change much this week. You can track the running list of these on our blog.
  • Peak Period Priority Lists – Let me know if you plan on flying into any destinations during these peak periods. Our local offices are maintaining priority lists to secure best options (parking, slots, etc.) as soon as details are available:
    • Mediterranean Summer Peak Season 2021 (late May-Sept 2021) – Spain, French Riviera, Italy, Croatia, Greece, Turkey
    • Japan Summer Olympics (July 23-Aug 8, 2021)
    • World Economic Forum – Singapore (Aug 17-20, 2021)
    • Beijing Winter Olympics (Feb 4-20, 2022)
  • No Zoom Webinar Meetup Next Week – We’re skipping next week’s webinar due to the conflict with the NBAA Go Leadership Summit. If you have suggestions for topics you’d like to hear about other than restriction updates, please tell us here.

March 11, 2021

Major News, Trends, Insights & Other Stuff –

  • ProPilot PRASE Survey – ProPilot is running its annual PRASE survey. If you think we’ve done a good job this year for International Trip Planning, or if you have had a good experience at any of our FBOs, please consider voting a 10 for us in teh relevant categories. While we don’t put a lot of weight in these trade surveys, they do create nice recognition and celebratory moments for our operational teams when then rank. Fill out the PDF survey online.
  • Vaccine Passports – The list of countries adopting some form of a vaccine passport/exemption policy is growing. You can track the running list of these on our blog.
  • Recommendation: Test Even if Vaccinated – While some countries are rolling out vaccine passport-esque programs, you should still plan on pre-arrival testing to give you maximum flexibility in case something changes and/or you need to change destinations.
  • Int’l Trip Volume Continues to Rise –
    • Record Numbers – The encouraging trend of rising trip bookings and inquiries continued its upward climb this week. We’re seeing the highest numbers since the start of the pandemic.
    • Plan EU Travel Sooner than Later – It’s becoming clear that there is a glut of pent-up demand for EU travel for both leisure (Mediterranean Peak Season) and essential business (UK, France, Germany). If you have plans to travel to Europe this summer, start those arrangements as soon as you have a date picked. Keep in mind that you’ll also be competing with pent-up demand on the commercial side, which typically gets priority at any airport.
  • BizAv Outlook Survey Results – Thanks for participating in our BizAv Outlook Survey (PDF). Some things you told us:
    • There is some optimism for a return to ≥75% normal int’l flying in July (37%), but a majority of you reported being more bullish for the fall.
    • Only 1/3 of you said passenger health concerns was your #1 trip blocker. Most reported regulatory instability and country accessibility as the major blockers. So basically…you’re ready to fly when the vax pass programs come online.
    • Over 80% of you are planning 1 or more int’l flights between now and July, with Europe and Mexico/Caribbean/Central America being the top regions.
    • Expect some bumps. Everyone in the industry will be challenged by the bounce-back as ground service providers will have to rapidly rehire and retrain staff to accommodate traffic demands, as well as navigate new procedures. Have patience, double check everything, and set expectations with stakeholders.
  • Olympics Double Header – We’re looking at first time we’ve dealt with 2 Olympics back-to-back – the Japan Summer Olympics (July 23-Aug 8, 2021) and Beijing Winter Olympics (Feb 4-20, 2022). Our offices across Japan and in Beijing will be ready to support you. In a normal year, most operators begin planning for these a year in advance. If you plan on going, let me know so I can put you on our priority list to secure your best options for these events as soon as details are published, as well as keep you informed.
  • REMINDER: World Economic Forum – Singapore – The Singapore World Economic Forum takes place Aug 17-20. Parking will be EXTREMELY limited at both airports in Singapore. If you plan on flying in, let me know ASAP. Our Singapore FBO is maintaining a priority list to help you secure your best options for parking as soon as details are released.
  • Yesterday’s Zoom Meetup – If you missed yesterday’s COVID ops webinar meetup, you can watch it here. We had over 250 poeple on the call, and a lot of great insights were shared.

March 4, 2021

  • Vaccine Passports – Lots of news and intel on various vaccine passport initiatives in play:
    • There have been various reports on the progress of IATA’s Travel Pass Initiative, set to launch this month. However, as mentioned last week, GA was not considered when putting this program together. We’re all over this with IBAC, NBAA, and other GA advocates and will keep you posted.
    • EU officials estimate its “Digital Green Pass” will take three months to implement, just in time for the Mediterranean peak travel season.
    • EU Nations including Denmark, Greece, Italy and Portugal are not waiting for the EU and are forging ahead more quickly with plans for their own vaccine passport programs. Slovakia already has theirs active. Note several of these are Med hot spots for tourism.
    • Chinese officials have announced that they are considering a digital vaccine passport.
    • Some smaller countries like Seychelles and Belize already have theirs.
  • Singapore’s New Business Travel Option – The Connect@Singapore initiative finally went into effect this week for select travelers of business, official, and high economic value. Check out pics.
  • March/April Int’l Trip Volume ▲ – We continue to see a rise in travel bookings and inquires for March and April. We’re also seeing more bookings for dates longer out…a great sign for growing optimism among operators.
  • Our Feasibility Guides Now Include COVID Testing Providers – You can now find testing site information for over 470 ICAOs and 1,000 individual testing sites included in our Feasibility Guides. Let me know if you need one for a destination of interest.
  • BizAv Outlook Survey – Thanks if you were able to take last week’s BizAv Outlook Survey. We’re keeping it open a few more days if you want to contribe and haven’t yet. Take the 5-min survey here. We’re compiling the results and will share next week.
  • UPDATE: 2020 Tokyo Olympics – Universal Aviation Japan is reporting that the gov’t is considering having a NO FANS games. We’re staying on top of this and will report the latest as we have it.
  • REMINDER: World Economic Forum – Singapore – The Singapore World Economic Forum takes place Aug 17-20. Parking will be EXTREMELY limited at both airports in Singapore. If you plan on flying in, let me know ASAP. Our Singapore FBO is maintaining a priority list to help you secure your best options for parking as soon as details are released.

Feb. 25, 2021

Major News, Trends, Insights & Other Stuff –

  • Vaccine Passports – We’re also receiving a TON of inquiries on vaccine passports. While there isn’t widespread adoption of vaccine entry exemptions by countries yet, IATA is working on its Travel Pass initiative which is reported to launch next month. A BIG HOWEVER is that IATA’s program is NOT being written for GA. We’re all over this with IBAC, NBAA, and other GA advocates and will keep you posted.
  • Trip Volumes Picking Up. So is Booking Further Out. – Leisure travel to the beachy places that have been open remains strong, and now we’re seeing bookings and inquiries for business purpose flights pick back up. Also notable is more operators are booking flights further in advance vs. short notice – a good sign that there is increasing optimism for travel stability.
  • No Major Change in Int’l Restrictions. Domestic Enforcement Up. – On a macro level, int’l entry restrictions haven’t changed much in recent weeks. However, more countries are re enforcing their domestic measures, threatening fines and jail time for those who break quarantine and mask mandates.
  • No Crew Exemptions for “Dirty” Countries – Crew exiting “dirty” countries with mutated COVID strains should double check the requirements of the country they’re entering, as many countries have eliminated crew exemptions in these scenarios. We’re also seeing fewer total bans of entrants from dirty countries in favor of just more stringent testing and quarantine requirements.
  • Europe Back in Focus – With Mediterranean peak season coming up soon, there’s a renewed interest in European travel both for leisure and essential business in the May-June timeframe. As we have locations all across the Med, we’ll be ready to support you.
  • REMINDER: World Economic Forum – Singapore – The Singapore World Economic Forum takes place Aug 17-20. Parking will be EXTREMELY limited at both airports in Singapore. If you plan on flying in, let me know ASAP. Our Singapore FBO is maintaining a priority list to help you secure your best options for parking as soon as details are released.
  • REMINDER: Recurrent Training and PDP CAM Credits – We’re hosting an upcoming 2-day virtual scheduling and dispatch recurrent training course on March 9-10. This is the same course we’ve hosted at the NBAA SDC Convention, and it counts toward NBAA CAM credits. It’s super interactive, and everyone who takes it loves it. Learn more and enroll online.

Feb. 11, 2021

  • International Viral/PCR Testing – There’s been a lot of demand for a global database of COVID viral testing providers, so we decided to build it. We’ll soon have providers identified in over 350 top destinations. You’ll find this information in our Feasibility Guides which you can request from your Universal Trip Support team.
  • Possible U.S. Quarantine Rules – No news is good news. The fact that nothing has been released yet, while other requirements like mask mandates were quickly announced, could be a positive sign. We’re continuing to watch for anything new.
  • COVID Testing for Relief Crew on Airlines – This continues to be a hot question. Technically, relief crew are active crew and, thus, exempt. NBAA has suggested this template letter that active crew could present to the airlines to be exempted. However, it’s our opinion that doing the testing is a less risky, more straightforward option than trying to get exemption authorization from airlines – and reports from other operators on yesterday’s meetup confirmed the same.
  • FAA: “I got your back, CDC.” – Read the new FAA NOTAM reinforcing the CDC order.
  • Don’t **** with the UK – To crackdown on travelers trying to cheat the system, the UK is now imposing jail time of up to 10 years for travelers who lie about their travel history. Don’t MESS with the UK.
  • Closed: Ireland-France Corridor The French government has issued this notice that travelers from the Ireland and other European Area (EA) countries who have been in a non-EA country within the previous 30 days must follow procedures applicable to arrivals from non EA countries. While this is not reflected in the NOTAM for France, it shuts the door on the popular Ireland-France corridor.
  • Travel to Beachy Destinations Remains Strong – We normally see a bit of lull in beach destination travel in February, but that hasn’t been the case this year. We’re seeing a healthy amount of traffic and interest for Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America, and Maldives.
  • ALERT: World Economic Forum – Singapore – The Singapore World Economic Forum takes place Aug 17-20. Parking will be EXTREMELY limited at both airports in Singapore. If you plan on flying in, let me know ASAP. Our Singapore FBO is maintaining a priority list to help you secure your best options for parking as soon as details are released.
  • Recurrent Training and PDP CAM Credits – We’re hosting an upcoming 2-day virtual scheduling and dispatch recurrent training course on March 9-10. This is the same course we’ve hosted at the NBAA SDC Convention, and it counts toward NBAA CAM credits. It’s super interactive, and everyone who takes it loves it. Learn more and enroll online.
  • Yesterday’s Ops Webinar Meetup – There were almost 300 people on yesterday’s Zoom call. If you missed it, you can watch it here.

Feb. 4, 2021

  • Canada’s New Entry Restrictions & Quarantine – Canada announced tighter entry restrictions including airport funneling and a mandatory 3-day quarantine at a gov’t sanctioned hotel. Funneling into YVR/YYC/YYC/YUL went into effect today (tech stops exempt). Implementation date for the 3-day quarantine mandate is still TBD. See more in the Canada section below.
  • New Pending/Probable U.S. Quarantine Rules – Like Tom Petty once said, waiting is the hardest part…but that’s where we’re at right now. HHS, TSA and FAA are due to provide the Biden administration their recommendations for implementing a mandatory quarantine on arrival today. We’re not sure if those recommendations will be made public, and there is no news as to when we might see a new Presidential Proclamation. We’re watching and waiting. 👀 ⌛
  • More Tightening en Français – France has shut down entry from any non-EU country. Additionally, its overseas territories including Miquelon, French Caribbean, French Guiana, and French Polynesia are implementing similar restrictions.
  • European Corridors – More corridors have recently closed due to tightening, but some remain open with the right pressure testing. For example, U.S. operators can still enter France via an overnight in Ireland, but via Germany is no longer an option.
  • Vaccine Passport Update – IATA is now pushing for exemptions for vaccinated travelers. Denmark has just announced its program. We really hope to see something similar in the whatever the U.S. quarantine requirements end up being.
  • ⚠️ ALERT: World Economic Forum – Singapore – News broke yesterday that the World Economic Forum is pushing from May to Aug 17-20. Regardless of the date, parking will be EXTREMELY limited at both airports in Singapore. If you plan on flying in, let me know ASAP. Our Singapore FBO is maintaining a priority list to help you secure your best options for parking as soon as details are released.

Jan. 28, 2021

HOTTEST TOPIC: New U.S. CDC Testing Requirements – Effective Jan 26

There have been A TON of questions regarding the new CDC testing requirements. We’ve done our best to answer all these FAQs on our blog and in yesterday’s COVID webinar meetup.

Here are the three main things we’re asked:

  1. Myth or Fact? The CDC’s new Quarantine Requirement – Myth…it doesn’t exist. CDC guidelines RECOMMEND quarantine; they don’t mandate it. CDC spokespeople have confirmed the same. While a new Presidential Proclamation concerning quarantine on arrival is likely, details and possible exemptions (e.g., vaccine passports) are still TBD.
  2. ACTIVE CREW and Exemption Scenarios – While Deadhead Crew can technically be exempted, if you are positioning crew via a commercial carrier, you should still plan on testing (for practical purposes) vs. trying to prove your exemption case to the gate agent. Also…don’t try to sneak passengers or spouses as crew when they aren’t….not good. You can find the full definition of ACTIVE CREW and some analysis on the various exemption scenarios that we’ve been asked about on our website.
  3. Getting Sick Abroad – In our interpretation, you cannot return on a normal flight. You would either have to stay there until you recover or come home on an air ambulance flight, with a lot of paperwork involved. The CDC has provided interim guidance for transporting individuals with COVID exposure into the U.S.

Other Trends, News, & Insights –

  • ⚠️ ALERT: World Economic Forum – Singapore – This event is coming up fast. While many details are still pending, parking is EXTREMELY limited at both airports in Singapore. Many aircraft will likely need to reposition to neighboring countries. If you plan on flying in, let me know ASAP. I’ll put you on a priority list that our Singapore FBO is maintaining to help you secure your best options as soon as details are known.
  • U.S. Entry Restrictions Continue and Expand – The Biden Administration has reinstated the U.S. travel restrictions on all non-U.S. travelers who have been in Brazil and most EU countries, including the UK and Ireland. South Africa gets added started Jan. 30.
  • Stricter Testing and More Quarantines, Globally – In response to the variant strains of COVID, some countries are starting to reduce their validity windows for pre-arrival testing. New mandatory quarantines on arrival have been announced for Barbados, St. Vincent & Grenadines and Tunisia.
  • Bans on Travelers from Mutant Strain Hotspots – Similar to above, many countries are implementing bans on travelers from where there are mutant strain outbreaks, including UK, Brazil, and South Africa – along with neighboring countries as well.
  • UK’s Mandatory Quarantine List – The UK is continuing to impose more restrictions as it battles the surge of infections from the mutant strain. The latest is a mandatory 10-day hotel curfew for international arrivals from 30 “red” countries.
  • Early Adopters: Vaccine Passports – Iceland has removed quarantine requirements for vaccinated travelers, and a few other countries have added “vaccine” language into their restrictions.
  • Easier CDC Attestation Forms – We’re now providing these automatically, pre-populated with your leg and passenger information, on Universal-managed trips where we’re handling your inbound U.S. Customs. Free.
  • Int’l Viral Testing Locations – We’re working aggressively across our Universal Aviation and third-party ground handlers at top destinations to have viral testing providers that you can rely on. A majority of our locations already do. Work with your Universal Trip Support team for details.
  • Easier Middle East Ops – Unrelated to COVID, but good news regardless. As of this month, flights can now operate directly between Qatar and UAE or Saudi Arabia. These routes haven’t been available for years.
  • Reminder: New Feasibility Guide – Starting tomorrow, you’ll receive one of these Feasibility Guides automatically with your Universal-managed trips to provide you better destination intelligence before you land. You can also request one for your self-managed/DIY trips for $10 per airport.

Jan. 21, 2021

  • What’s the CDC’s definition of ACTIVE CREW? – Short answer…we’re still trying to find out. We/Universal, NBAA, and NATA all are trying to get a clear answer from the CDC. The terminology ACTIVE CREW and FLIGHT CREW are not wholly defined in the Order, FAQ, or guidance on the CDC website to address common business aviation crew scenarios. This article on our blog has a running list of FAQs that we’re updating regularly, as well as links to what the CDC has published.
  • Can Universal provide Attestation forms? – Our plan is to start providing these to you automatically, pre-populated with leg and passenger information, on Universal-managed trips where we’re handling your inbound U.S. Customs. We’re still dotting i’s and crossing t’s with our Legal and Compliance teams, but we’re optimistic that we’ll be able to provide these to you starting Jan. 26.
  • U.S. Presidential Proclamation Whiplash – Monday night, the Trump Administration issued a surprise proclamation terminating entry restrictions on certain travelers from the Schengen area, UK/Ireland and Brazil, effective Jan. 26. Within an hour, Biden’s aides quickly went to press saying it wouldn’t last. While it’s highly probably the Biden Administration will officially reverse this, Trump’s last proclamation is still set to go into effect Jan 26. We’re watching this closely…it could change any minute.
  • Hawaii Rules vs. CDC Order – If you’re planning a mission to Hawaii, make sure to use one of Hawaii’s approved testing providers, as the state’s requirements are more stringent than the new CDC order.
  • No Más: UK Quarantine Exemptions – As the mutated virus rages on, all UK safe-travel corridors and quarantine exemptions have been rendered null and void. See the UK section below for details.
  • EU-ETS + Brexit = UK ETS – Yup. Another emissions reporting scheme now applies as a result of Brexit – UK-ETS. Our Global Regulatory experts held a web meetup yesterday covering what you need to know for this and all things emissions in 2021. You can watch the video playback here. If you need help with your emissions monitoring and reporting, we can make this easy for you. Let me know or contact our Global Regulatory team directly.
  • Our New Feasibility Guide is Your Friend – Starting Jan. 29, you’ll start getting one of these Feasibility Guides automatically with your Universal-managed trips. It’s got A TON of great info to help you navigate all these COVID restrictions in detail and a lot of additional destination intelligence for your missions. It’s actually pulling from the same database I use to put together these updates. You’ll also be able to request a Feasibility Guide for your self-managed/DIY trips for $10 per airport.

Scroll to the end of this article for detailed country restrictions.


Jan. 14, 2021

  • CDC – Here is the CDC’s webpage on this. Make sure you’ve read through the Order, the Passenger Attestation (gov’t speak for “Declaration Form”, which you need to retain for 2 years), and the FAQ.
  • Our Blog and FAQs – We’ve published this article on our blog with our summary on this regulation (looking at it through a GA lens), as well as a running list of the FAQs we’ve received. We’re going to keep building on this as new FAQs come in. For answers that are still unknown, our Global Regulatory Services team is reaching out to the CDC for answers.
  • Yesterday’s Webinar Meetup – There were over 400 people on the Zoom call, and this new CDC requirement was the major focus. We talked about how this will apply to GA, questions that operators have, and gaps in the regulation that need to be clarified. The chat and Q&A was super active. You can watch/share the recording here.
  • COVID Testing Providers Abroad – Many of our own Universal Aviation FBO locations already have solutions in place, and we’re working across our global network of preferred third-party handlers to get answers on how they can support your pre-departure testing needs.
  • Best Practice Poll: How will YOU implement this new reg? – I’d love to hear your thoughts on how you see yourself most efficiently implementing this new CDC requirement in your operation. I’ll share what I hear from others as well.

Scroll to the end of this article for detailed country restrictions.


Jan. 7, 2021

Trends, Insights & Other News 

  • U.S. CDC’s New Testing Requirements for Entry – The U.S. CDC recently issued guidance requiring ANYONE entering the U.S. from the UK via an AIRLINE to have proof of a negative COVID test. Our Global Regulatory Services team has confirmed that the requirement currently only applies to airline travel from the UK. Some industry sources are reporting that this will soon apply to GA for all international arrivals from the UK, but the regulation does not say that today. However, aligned with CDC recommendations, it’s always best practice to have proof of a recent negative test prior to any international travel. See the full CDC airline testing order for more details and what is considered a valid test. We will advise of any updates to this as official guidance is released. Note: Universal Aviation UK can help with arranging a pre-departure test in the UK.
  • Mutant COVID 🧟 = More Tightening – The mutated and more highly contagious strain of COVID first identified in the UK has triggered a global tightening of restrictions. The UK, formerly a great jumping off point for potential missions to Europe, is no longer a viable option as a significant number of countries in Europe and globally have instituted UK travel bans. We’re tracking a list of these countries on our blog. If you do travel to the UK (e.g., for business purposes), you’ll be under a hard lockdown until at least mid-February.
  • BREXIT – While the UK and the EU concluded a trade deal shortly before the Dec 31 deadline, there are still changes and unknowns impacting GA travel:
    • Aircraft Importation – We are still awaiting some clarity on the importation status of aircraft previously imported into the EU via the UK to gain free circulation. We recommend you speak with legal counsel should you have concerns about the importation status of your aircraft.
    • Charter Permits – The UK and individual EU member states are now negotiating traffic rights between the nationals carriers and UK carriers. This may result in different traffic rights from one country to another based on reciprocal arrangements. Details remain fluid.
    • Pet Travel – UK pet passports will no longer be replaced when they expire. We recommend anyone who uses a UK pet passport to consider getting an EU passport for their cat, dog, or ferret.
  • Are COVID immunity passports in our future? – There is increasing chatter regarding how COVID immunity passports may impact entry restrictions and quarantine requirements. In the U.S., everyone who has received a COVID vaccine has been issued a vaccination card showing proof they’ve been inoculated. Travelers to certain African countries are already familiar with the yellow fever cards required for entry. We’ll be watching to see if countries issue similar requirements for COVID. This article has some interesting info on the topic.
  • Now at London’s Most Central Airport – As of this week, Universal Aviation UK is now managing the VIP GAT at London’s RAF Northolt Airport. This is a great, secure option for accessing central London — both now during the pandemic, and in the future when restrictions loosen up and normal London-area congestion returns.
  • Scroll to the end of this article for detailed country restrictions.

December 10, 2020

  • December’s Traffic Continues to be Strong – We’re still seeing growing demand for holiday travel, and December has been the strongest month for international GA traffic since the pandemic hit. The same beachy places I’ve been reporting are the most popular: Hawaii, Caribbean, Mexico, Costa Rica, Maldives, and French Polynesia/Tahiti/Bora Bora. Parking and hotels continue to fill.
  • Caribbean via TIST – We have a new preferred ground handler at St. Thomas, Standard Aviation. They have an amazing facility with a 24k sq. ft. hangar, and they provide inter-island transfers via their own helicopter operation or fixed-wing charter. A PC-12 to St. Barth is ~35 min. This could be a good option if you are looking at different ways to access the Caribbean.
  • Restrictions Remain Stable 👍 – At a macro level, mostly everything continues to look pretty stable for getting in and out for holiday travel. You should be comfortable locking in plans, and you should DEFINITELY be putting in requests now if considering a trip…demand is strong.
  • Notable Movers this Week –
  • World Economic Forum moving to Singapore – For only the second time in its 50-year history, the World Economic Forum (WEF) Annual Meeting will be hosted outside of Davos for safety purposes, in Singapore on May 13-16, 2021. WEF is normally a super congested event, so we’re going to be working closely with our FBO in Singapore to provide updates as soon as details are known.
  • Insurance with COVID Waiver – On your insurance, in addition to having documented coverage for COVID-related illness, many countries want to see coverage specifically for their country. If you have destinations planned, get them added to your policy so that you can show proof.
  • COVID Vaccine Delivery Flights – In the coming year, we anticipate that many business aircraft operators will be donating use of their aircraft to help transport the vaccine where it’s needed most. If you’re considering such a mission, Universal is donating pre-trip feasibility and consulting services to help you plan your best path to mission success.

Scroll to the end of this article for detailed country restrictions.


December 3, 2020

  • Strong Traffic Demand for December – The last-minute BLITZ for holiday travel planning is ON, and it’s a race to secure your best options. All the places I’ve been reporting – Hawaii, Caribbean, Mexico, Costa Rica, and Maldives – dominate in popularity. Parking and hotels in these areas continue to fill. French Polynesia/Tahiti has also been getting more interest since it’s open.
  • Notable Movers this Week – BVI and Oman have opened for leisure. Kauai (Hawaii) is mandating a quarantine at a residence or resort, despite the state’s pretesting exemption program. Various countries in Europe with lockdowns in effect have let those expire, allowing some businesses to reopen and easier movement within those countries.
  • CDC’s Reduced Quarantine Time ≠ Regulatory Change (Yet) – While the CDC is now issuing new guidance for a reduced quarantine time of less than 14-days, it’s too soon to know if or when this will manifest in the U.S. Presidential Proclamations. For now, no change.
  • Watch the Local Curfews – While many places are open without a full-blown quarantine requirement, be mindful of local curfews. Night and weekend curfews are common.
  • Insurance with COVID Waiver – Before you travel, make sure your insurance specifically covers COVID-related illness. More and more int’l destinations want to see it, so its easier to get this in writing from your health insurance provider sooner than later if you plan travel.

Scroll to the end of this article for detailed country restrictions.


November 19, 2020

Trends

  • Holiday Travel Planning Just Accelerated – We saw a BIG spike this week in trip feasibility requests and bookings for both Nov. and Dec. leisure travel. Most operators are looking for easy destinations in and out, with low risk of locking down like we saw with the first wave. Hawaii, Caribbean, Mexico, Costa Rica, Dubai and Maldives continue to dominate the list.
  • Get Your BOE Now – U.S. operators traveling south for the holidays should be taking advantage of the CBP’s BOE program to avoid having to make an extra stop when returning home. Average processing time with CBP is about 2 weeks now, but turnaround time is expected to slow starting next week (holiday PTO). A BOE is good for 2 years, and it greatly increases your operational flexibility. We recommend getting your applications in now to avoid issues…we are adept at expediting. (Note: Non-U.S. operators can also leverage this program for ops into the U.S.)
  • Schedule Your COVID Tests ASAP – We’re hearing accounts of operators having to cancel travel plans because their passengers can’t get a COVID test in time. Schedule your lab appointments now. It’s way easier to cancel last minute than to find a last-minute testing slot. For Hawaii, remember that you must use one of the designated testing providers.
  • Parking is Filling Up Everywhere – I mentioned last week that VRMM/Maldives was full. Universal Aviation Maldives can still get you overnight options at VRMG and VRMV. Now we’re seeing that the Caribbean is filling up fast. Costa Rica and Mexico are also tracking high. Work with us ASAP to secure your best options.
  • Sold Out Hotels 🤬 – Same as above. Preferred hotels/resorts are filling up – especially ones with the most roaming space and on-property amenities. Get your reservations in now. Remember that we have a Hotel Services Team that you can lean on for help. We have contracts with a lot of hotels and chains – sometimes giving us access to rooms others can’t get, as well as extra benefits specifically for crew.
  • Option: Brazil? – COVID cases spiked during the Brazilian “winter” in August and have trended downward since. While overall COVID cases remain high, we are seeing some growing interest in holiday trips for the Brazilian summer, which starts in December. Brazil is wide open. Operationally speaking, it can be a good holiday option, and there are some beautiful beach destinations where you can remain socially distant. We have offices all across Brazil that can support you on the ground.
  • Holiday Travel Promotion – Remember that we are running this promotion to simplify your holiday ops, help you avoid any issues, and save you some $$. Take advantage if you can.

  • Traffic Interest & Demand – Besides the holiday travel hotspots, we continue to see growing interest in Asia; however, accessibility into much of the region remains limited. More details are in the Asia-Pacific section below. Demand for flights into Europe is decreasing which is to be expected with the increasing lockdowns combined with the shift away from business travel to leisure for this time of year.
  • Lightening in Warm Areas; Tightening in Cold Ones – More lockdowns have been announced for Europe. On the other hand, more countries are easing restrictions in South America and Africa. Notably, Paraguay is now accessible without quarantine, and Chile opens Nov. 23.
  • Plan Tech Stops Carefully – If you transport non-U.S. nationals, remember that U.S. Proclamations count tech steps as part of your travel history. If you need to tech stop in Europe, you can keep your travel history clean by using Croatia (which is a non-Schengen/non-suspended country) or another non-suspended country.
  • Risk Mitigation: The U.S. STEP Program – STEP is an important risk mitigation program that U.S. nationals should be using on every international trip, especially now with COVID. When the first wave hit and we saw the massive wave of lockdowns, this program helped get people on the U.S. Embassy’s evacuation list to return home. It has a whole host of other benefits like if you lose your passport or have medical issues, if there is a terrorist incident or civil unrest, etc. Our Global Regulatory Services team is now offering an optional, turnkey STEP Registration Service for your trips with us. Let me know if you’d be interested in us doing this for you, and I’ll connect you with our regulatory experts to discuss.
  • Next COVID Webinar Meetup x VBACE – We’ll be hosting our next COVID webinar after Thanksgiving in our virtual booth at the NBAA VBACE Convention (Dec. 2-3). 

Scroll to the end of this article for detailed country restrictions.


November 12, 2020

Trends & Insights 

  • 2nd-Wave Restrictions: So Far, So Good – Despite seeing new restrictions being implemented in response to the 2nd COVID wave, most continue to be in the form of increased specificity and/or local lockdowns, not major entry restrictions. China is the notable exception, as it just tightened entry requirements for business purpose flights.
  • Traffic Demand – It’s the same trend I’ve been reporting…Business purpose flights into Europe and holiday travel to beach getaways is where much of the interest in international travel is focused right now. More operators are also expressing interest in Asia as the region steadily continues to loosen.
  • End-of-year Holiday Travel – Hawaii, Puerto Rico, UVSI, the Caribbean, Mexico, Costa Rica, Maldives, and Dubai are the dominant hot spots since restrictions are light. Plan your trips sooner than later for best options. Take advantage of this promotion if you can.
  • Filling up: Maldives – As one of the best options for holiday travel in Asia this year, demand is very high. Universal Aviation Maldives is reporting that overnight parking at VRMM is already completely booked Dec 24 – Jan 6. However, you can still drop-n-go and overnight at VRMG or VRMV. Let me know if you’re considering a trip here.
  • COVID Aircraft Disinfection – More countries are requiring proof of this on arrival. We’re also hearing reports from operators that they’ve been asked to provide documentation showing when the aircraft was last sanitized, although it’s not specifically stated in the restrictions. Bangladesh, Egypt, Mali, Nicaragua, Thailand, Ukraine, and Tanzania are confirmed locations with the requirement that we are aware of. Please share if you’ve encountered others.

Scroll to the end of this article for detailed country restrictions.


November 5, 2020

Trends & Insights 

  • EU lockdowns are not flight restrictions. – Sure, no pubs or theaters…But if you need to get in for business purposes, restrictions haven’t changed, and hotels are generally available for non-leisure. You may be racking up more points than usual on room service charges for meals.
  • Permission to walkabout – Certain cities in Greece have been requiring that you get permission (via SMS) before leaving your residence. Now France requires that you get permission and carry around this certificate.
  • COVID Aircraft Sanitization – This question came up on the meetup yesterday. So far, only Egypt and Nicaragua have this requirement that we are aware of. I can provide a sample sanitization certificate if you need it.
  • Holiday Travel – We continue to see week over week increases in inquiries and bookings for Hawaii, the Caribbean, Mexico, and Costa Rica. Restrictions are also light in Dubai and Maldives, and we’re seeing solid interest there for the holidays.
  • Hawaii Crew Testing Exemption – We’ve heard from some crew that they’ve been able to get an exemption on arrival to bypass Hawaii’s pre-testing requirement (i.e., no quarantine without a test). After speaking with local handlers, we’re recommending you get the COVID test if you can, but if you can’t, it looks like you can get around quarantine for a short-term stay or until you can get a test.
  • Brexit Cometh – Ok…not COVID-related, but it’s a hot topic. Our team in the UK has put together a good summary on how Brexit may impact our industry. Think CIQ, charter permits, aircraft importation, pet passports, etc. It’s worth a quick read.

Scroll to the end of this article for detailed country restrictions.


October 29, 2020

  • Canada removed from EC Safe List – Late last week, the EC updated its recommended “Safe List” for the first time in months, removing Canada, Georgia and Tunisia and adding Singapore.This remains merely the EC’s recommendation, not law. Any flight carrying Canadian passengers to an EU country will need to be more closely vetted, as each country will enact its own unique requirements.
  • More Asia-Pacific Easing – India has resumed issuing most types of visas (not tourism) and is accessible for business travel. Philippines will be accessible Nov. 1 for leisure.
  • More Caribbean Easing – Bahamas drops the mandatory quarantine Nov 1. Cayman’s 14-day quarantine can be reduced to just length of stay (at a beautiful villa). St. Kitts & Nevis open Oct 31 if you are OK staying at the resort hotel for the first 7 days of your visit.
  • Holiday Travel Hotspots – The Caribbean, Hawaii, Mexico, Costa Rica, and Maldives continue to be popular destinations for the upcoming holiday season due to their accessibility. We’re also starting to see more interest in UAE/Dubai among European travelers.
  • Hawaii x Canada – Hawaii’s pre-travel testing program names specific providers they’ll allow you to use. While there are some major lab networks on this list, accessibility has been limited for Japanese and Canadians. Hawaii just approved a list of Japanese labs, but Canada is still waiting. Making a stop in mainland U.S. to get the test before proceeding to Hawaii has been the workaround.
  • U.S. Visa Delays – Non-U.S. nationals needing to enter the U.S. should start their visa applications/renewals sooner than later. We’ve heard multiple accounts of U.S. Embassies in various countries being slow to process these.
  • Crew Rest Option: Sri Lanka – The country remains closed, but it’s accessible for crew rest. Just quarantine overnight at the hotel. If you’re looking for something in the region, this is a good option.

Reminder – Remember that these regulations are constantly changing, highly-nuanced, and specific to each flight scenario – often requiring a lot of pressure testing.

Scroll to the end of this article for detailed country restrictions.


October 22, 2020

Popular Topic: Sick Pax Onboard – On the international missions we are supporting, a growing number of flight departments have asked us for help with WHAT IF scenario analyses on what do if a passenger begins showing COVID symptoms for the particular trip leg being flown.

Many countries, especially those in Europe, have procedures specified in their regulations for this, but others do not. As a general rule of thumb, we recommend always contacting us, your handler, or local authorities at your destination if this happens. And of course, take preventative steps by following your own screening processes prior to allowing passengers onboard your aircraft.

Trends & Insights 

  • Europe Still Accessible – Despite rising COVID cases across Europe, accessibility into Europe has not significantly changed. There are still a good number of flights getting in and out carrying non-EU foreign nationals. The access corridors shuffle around occasionally, but they can often be successful navigated if you are flexible. At some destinations, local restaurants/bars/shops have (once again) reduced capacity or have shut down.
  • Demand Hotspots – Same as last week. Europe, Mexico, Caribbean, Central America continue to be really popular. Within our own operation, we are supporting a lot of missions into these regions, as well as performing a lot of trip feasibility assessments for operators wanting to access these destinations.
  • Prediction 🔮: Pre-Departure Testing – In addition to pre-/on-arrival COVID testing, some countries are starting to also implement pre-departure testing. Our experts predict that we will probably see more of this.

Help us help YOU: Holiday Travel – Based on what we are hearing from operators, there is going to be a big short-notice rush for holiday travel over the November/December timeframe. Everyone is just waiting to see what the restrictions look like before they lock in a plan.

If you have destinations you are considering, please let me know. We are going to be working closely with ground handlers at popular destinations to make sure that we have the latest restriction info in hand for when the requests start coming in AND that the handlers themselves are ready for the influx.

Advice: Please continue checking with us prior to travel – There was a recent situation where an operator attempted to do a trip into Europe without performing full due diligence. The operator had a business invitation letter but missed other requirements. The result: denial of entry and last-minute calls to us for help.

Reminder: These regulations are constantly changing, highly-nuanced, and specific to each flight scenario (who’s onboard, where have they been, documentation in hand, etc.). Websites alone are not dependable sources, and if you call two ground handlers on the field, you may get two different answers.

Scroll to the end of this article for detailed country restrictions.


October 15, 2020

#1 Question This Week: A Holiday Free of Restrictions –

It’s not normal that operators come to us for trip support questions without a destination in mind, but that’s exactly what’s happening now that stores are packed with Halloween stuff and holiday vacation planning is near the top everyone’s mind. We’re seeing a lot of demand for Nov./Dec. getaways, and people are itching to go wherever.

“Where can I go for the holidays with minimal restrictions? Anywhere.” And it’s being asked a lot.

Hawaii, USVI, parts of the Caribbean, Mexico, Costa Rica, Maldives, French Polynesia, and Turkey are all great leisure options. Possibly London as well (see below).

Rumor Mill: NYC-London Corridor –

We’re also getting a lot of questions about the reciprocal, quarantine-free corridor between the UK and U.S. that’s rumored to happen before Christmas. Right now, we don’t have much information. It’s our guess that we won’t know anything for sure until after the U.S. Presidential Election.

Obviously, our teams on both sides of the Atlantic are watching this closely, and I’ll keep you informed on the latest rumblings.

Pro Tip 2020: Passport renewals
A thoughtful customer asked us to share this one, and we’ve heard the same from others. Passport renewals for some countries, especially the U.S., are taking FOR-EV-ER to process right now…even if you pay for rush.

Many countries require a 3-to-6-month passport validity to enter—making these renewal delays a real trip killer.

Scroll to the end of this article for detailed country restrictions.


October 9, 2020

Trends

  • Japan– Our team in Japan has confirmed with local authorities that the country will now accept foreign nationals coming to Japan for business purposes. There are a number of prerequisites (PCR test, invitation letter, visa, etc.) and, unfortunately, there is still a 14-quarantine at a hotel or residence.
  • The Corridor Shuffle – More countries in the EU are mimicking the UK model – watching the latest reported COVID infection numbers and rapidly adjusting which countries they are restricting. As a result, access corridors are continually evolving but are still very usable as long as you can be flexible.
  • That’s not what the website says. – This has been a common theme throughout the pandemic, so you cannot rely on what is on the web alone. Many countries struggle to keep their official websites current with the latest restrictions. It seemed to get better for a while, but with more countries issuing rapid changes to their regulations based on changing COVID infection rates, their websites are not keeping up.
  • Intra-APAC Easing – Australia, Japan, Singapore, and South Korea are slowly starting to loosen to travelers from APAC-area countries. Our offices in the region are cautiously optimistic that we will see more of this.Scroll to the end of this article for detailed country restrictions.


October 2, 2020

  • High Interest Regions – We’re seeing growing demand for flights into Latin America as it continues to loosen up…both in trip feasibility requests and actual missions flown. Business purpose flights into Europe and leisure flights into the Caribbean also remain of high interest to operators we’re supporting.
  • More Intra-Schengen Corridor Complexity – As mentioned last week, more European countries are deviating from the EC’s guidance and imposing restrictions on other EU countries, adding complexity to intra-Schengen corridor access. Despite added complexity, we continue to see success in navigating missions through these challenges.
  • Business Purpose Flight Specificity – Countries are putting more definition around what they classify as a “business purpose flight,” as well as what information they expect to see on your business purpose letter (e.g., size of economic interest, business purposes, etc.). Generally speaking, we don’t view these revised definitions as being more restrictive, but more clear on what it takes to get a YES to enter.

Scroll to the end of this article for detailed country restrictions.


September 18, 2020

  • U.S. CBP Preclearance Returns to Shannon – The U.S. CBP Preclearance program at Shannon, Ireland (EINN) will resume Sunday, September 20. More details and the current ops procedures are available on our blog.
  • Travel history tip – If a country has an X day clean travel history restriction – for instance, 14 days – your travel history has to be clean for the entire 14-day period. Plan on being subject to the restriction until the 15th day (X + 1). We’re seeing cases where passengers are trying to do trips on the 14th day, and they are getting denied or told to quarantine. The 14th day must be completed prior to departure or entry, based on whatever the country’s regulation specifically says.
  • More Reopenings – Belize, Cayman Island, Colombia, Japan, South Africa, and USVI (hotels back online) are some of the more notable destinations that have just partially reopened or have announced plans to do so by October. See each respective country below for details.
  • More Localized Restrictions – Some countries, most recently in Europe, are getting more specific on entry and quarantine restrictions by restricting specific states/provinces/cities versus whole countries. While better than a full country-level restriction, it adds more complexity to travel history vetting, trip feasibility assessment, and scenario analysis.
  • Increased Corridor Complexity – Some EU countries have added new restrictions on other Schengen countries/regions/cities which is impacting corridor access.
  • Missions Flown & Feasibility Requests – Within our own operation, we continue to see strong demand for business purpose flights into Europe and leisure flights into the Caribbean. With the loosening that’s been happening in Latin America, we’re seeing more interest in that region as well.

Scroll to the end of this article for detailed country restrictions.


September 11, 2020

U.S. ends airport funneling

By far, the biggest COVID-related news this week was the announcement that the U.S. CDC will remove requirements for funneling through the 15 named AOEs starting this coming Monday, as well as remove its requirements for enhanced entry health screening for passengers previously required to funnel, since symptom-based screening has been deemed ineffective in preventing the transmission of COVID-19.

This is positive news, and a nice step forward to a more pre-COVID operating environment.

It is important to remember that the funneling program is completely independent of the U.S. Presidential Proclamations declaring suspended regions. This is a change in HOW individuals can enter the country, but not a change in WHO can enter the country.

Our Global Regulatory Services team continues to work closely with U.S. CBP and DOS to stay on top of any possible policy and/or procedural changes impacting foreign nationals from suspended regions that may arise.

See full list of country updates below.


September 3, 2020

Trends

  • More countries are requiring visitors to install cell phone apps for the purpose of GPS tracking you while you are in the country. The Bahamas and Fiji are the latest to require this. If this trend continues, burner phones may start growing in popularity.
  • More countries in Latin America have partially opened or announced they will do so.
  • More countries are dropping quarantine requirements if proof of a recent negative PCR COVID test can be provided. (Reminder: Have your full legal name, driver’s license number, and passport number included on any tests you take.)
  • Business purpose flights and travel corridors (of which there are many) continue to be a popular mode of access – especially within Europe.
  • See full list of country updates below.


August 28, 2020

Rumors – There are rumblings once again that France may exercise reciprocity on the U.K. by requiring a quarantine for all travelers from the country.

Golden Visas – Countries like Portugal, Cyprus, Malta and others have programs that grant you – and your immediate family – citizenship or residency status if you make a real estate investment in the country. These programs were previously popular for tax purposes, but now they’ve taken on a whole new life.

A rapidly growing trend of aircraft owners and charter passengers pursuing this route for access into Europe.

Based on current regulations, most EU countries are open to citizens and residents of other EU countries – making this a very powerful travel instrument.

Trends – More countries continue to open up access for legitimate business purposes. For Europe, once you clear one Schengen country, the rest are pretty much accessible. These “business access corridors” are rapidly increasing in popularity among operators, and many are successfully using them to access Europe.

Important Reminder – For travel to the U.S., remember that U.S. Presidential Proclamations affecting entry are still in effect. U.S. citizens and permanent residents who have been in a suspended region over the last 14 days must (re)enter via one of the 15 approved airports for funneling. Entry by any non-U.S. foreign national who has been in a suspended region over the past 14 days is HIGHLY RESTRICTED and will be denied, with few exceptions.


August 21, 2020

Trends – More countries are reopening. Latin America and central Asia have had a wave of countries ease restrictions – predominately for business purposes, but that is often enough to find a way to get passengers in for whatever reason.

There is a growing number of access corridors within Europe that passengers can leverage. France did not execute reciprocity on the UK, so the UK-France access corridor is still alive and well for U.S citizens and other third-country nationals. Austria, Germany, Switzerland, and Sweden have been added to the accessible list.


August 14, 2020

More European access for U.S. and other third-country nationals:

Despite the tightening of the EC’s Safe List, more flights with third-country nationals are getting into more European countries – particularly from the U.S. The key is having a business purpose for entering a Schengen country. Once in a Schengen country, more options for intra-Europe travel are available.

Check with your Universal trip support team for specifics and options.

UK and France quarantine
The UK has just announced quarantine requirements on passengers arriving from Aruba, France, Malta, Monaco, the Netherlands, and Turks and Caicos starting August 15. This could lead to reciprocity from France. Check with your Universal trip support team for the latest.

August 7, 2020

GENERAL STATUS UPDATES:
A majority of the restrictions set to expire Aug 1 just extended to Sept 1 – no big surprise there.

In Europe, all the same access points are still available for U.S. operators – with Croatia, France, Ireland, Italy (with an invitation letter from a local business), Turkey and UK being the most popular.

Croatia continues to have the parking issues due to high demand. Traffic from the U.S. into France (via UK) also continues to increase.

Turkey and the UK remain popular and convenient jump points to a next destination with 48-hour test validity requirements. Universal Aviation has rapid PCR testing providers set up at both Universal Aviation and Universal Aviation Turkey.

This week, a number of African countries reopened.

TRENDS: More PCR testing requirements are being implemented both before arrival and/or upon arrival. There is also a growing trend of more countries requiring health screening and locator forms.

INSIGHTS: For all PCR testing, advise passengers and crew to have Passport Number, Driver’s License #/local ID #, and Full Name included on the test results. An increasing number of countries are requiring this. It is a general best practice to avoid potential issues. Testing providers should be able to accommodate this with no issues. Also, note that the validity window that countries issue is usually based on swab date/time, not results date/time.


July 31, 2020

A good number of countries have restrictions set to expire August 1. As a result, updates have been steadily coming in over the past couple days. So far, we’re mostly seeing extensions along with revisions in entry requirements—especially with new requirements for PCR testing and locator forms for entry.

BIGGEST CHANGE: Brazil is now WIDE OPEN. If you have a need to operate there, we have offices all over Brazil to help, and they are following our COVID-19 health and safety standards that we’ve implemented across all Universal Aviation FBO Ground Services locations.

TRENDS: We continue to see growing demand for travel into the Mediterranean region. In addition, we’re finding that Italy really isn’t that hard to get into if you have a documented business purpose (e.g., models have been allowed entry with just a letter from a local company), and a quarantine isn’t required.

Latvia and Portugal can also now be accessed. More details on all of these are in the Europe section below.


July 24, 2020

Overall, there really haven’t been many major changes this week versus last. Mid-month and end of month is typically when we see the most movement, so next week you can expect more updates (likely the weekend of August 1).

The same access points for Europe are still available for U.S. travelers—including Turkey, the UK, France (via UK), Croatia and others listed below.

 If you are struggling to meet the 48-hr. PCR test requirement (e.g., to enter Croatia), we can assist with testing through both Universal Aviation Turkey and our FBO at London-Stansted. At London, we can actually do the test inside the FBO which has been really convenient for travelers. Passengers just need to quarantine for length of stay in the UK before heading to their next destination.


July 17, 2020

In general, we’re seeing a mix of some countries slightly retightening, while others are continuing a phased reopening.

The European Commission dropped 2 countries from its Safe List, but these are just recommendations for countries to follow. France has actually become more accessible to the U.S. and other countries. I’ve included an explanation in the Europe section below.

In addition, some emerging macro trends we’re seeing:

  • One Test to rule them all – Many countries are requiring proof of a negative C19 test to enter, but not any test will do. The gold standard is the PCR test. More countries are turning away passengers who are taking the Rapid or antibody tests.
  • The 48hr testing hurdle – A lot of EU countries require that the PCR test be taken within 48 hours of arrival. This is challenging for overseas travelers (like from the U.S.) and/or travelers where it takes longer than 24-36 hours to get the results (also like the U.S.). The workaround…we’ve secured a C19 PCR testing provider through our FBO at London-Stansted. Land in the UK, get your test, go on to your next European destination (subject to what the restrictions will allow.)
  • Policing of quarantine violations – We’re hearing more reports from customers that authorities are checking on self-declared residences/hotels to make sure visitors are abiding by local quarantining requirements. Similarly, there are a lot of accounts of “social policing” of quarantine violations, like these reports from Ireland. Safest best…respect the local requirements and avoid becoming a headline.
  • Mexico Annual Permit Renewals – AFAC is working with reduced staff, and approvals for Mexico annual permits are taking longer than usual. If you make 3+ trips to Mexico a year, we recommend getting your applications in now. If our Global Regulatory Services team already manages this for you, then disregard…your renewal is already being handled.

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