Border testing rules extended
“I made a recommendation to the government, which was approved, that the current arrangement, in force until 1st December, will be extended to 1st February 2021. So it will remain unchanged for the next two months. We believe this system has been working very well when we look to its contagion prevention value. We are working on what will come next and various courses of action are on the table,” prime minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir said today.
Under the current rule, people arriving in Iceland are tested for COVID-19 at the border, go into quarantine for five days, and are then tested a second time. Passengers can also choose to forego all testing and instead quarantine for 14 days.
Katrín says that the government plans to announce February’s changes to the rules on 15th January. Some sort of border testing will remain in place, with one option being certified testing overseas followed by one or even two tests in Iceland. The government is specifically looking into what sort of quarantine or contagion prevention measures will be put in place between tests.
Charges for the current testing are being scrapped, as announced earlier this week. Katrín says this is to prevent people opting for 14 days’ quarantine simply to avoid the cost of testing. She says, on the other hand, that nobody will be forced to be tested.
The government also agreed this morning that from 10th December, validated certification that someone has had COVID-19 and recovered will be exempt from the normal border procedures.