TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan's Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) on Wednesday (Feb. 24) announced that it will lift its ban on the entry of non-resident foreigners and allow international travelers to transit through the airport starting March 1.
In response to Taiwan's first imported case of the U.K. mutant coronavirus strain that emerged in December 2020, the CECC that month announced that it would ban foreign visitors, with a few exceptions, as well as transit passengers, starting Jan. 1. After Taiwan was able to contain a hospital cluster infection in Taoyuan, the CECC on Sunday (Feb. 21) indicated that because the fall and winter epidemic prevention scheme is slated to end Feb. 28, the restrictions on foreign visitors would likely be eased in March.
During a press conference on Wednesday, Health Minister and CECC head Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) officially announced that starting on March 1, non-resident foreigners will be allowed to enter Taiwan, with the notable exception of tourists and persons on "social visits," and international air travelers will be allowed to transit through Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport. The following are the conditions under which foreign visitors can enter Taiwan beginning next month:
Foreign visitors allowed to enter Taiwan
- Non-Taiwanese nationals who hold valid Taiwan residence permits, including citizens of Hong Kong, Macau, and China
- Foreign nationals without residence may apply for a special entry permit with overseas representative offices of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA), with the exception of tourists and persons making "social visits"
- Hong Kong, Macau, and Chinese citizens
A. Chinese citizens: residence permit holders (exceptions made for humanitarian considerations and emergency assistance), spouses of Taiwanese citizens, children of Taiwanese citizens who are minors, students approved by the Ministry of Education, international medical personnel approved by the Ministry of Health and Welfare (MOHW), and other special exemptions
B. Hong Kong and Macau citizens: residence permit holders (exceptions made for humanitarian considerations and emergency assistance, spouses of Taiwanese citizens, children of Taiwanese citizens who are minors, students approved by the Ministry of Education, businesspeople, internal transfers within multinational corporations, international medical personnel approved by the MOHW, and other special exemptions)
As for airline passengers transferring from Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport to other destinations, passengers must take the same airline group's flight, and their layovers are limited to fewer than eight hours. Transfer passengers must sit in a designated seating area in the airport and follow a separate route when traveling through the airport than other passengers.
Food services and shopping must be provided under the full supervision of dedicated staff. There must also be contingency plans in place in the event of flight delays or an abnormality detected in a transit passenger's state of health.
PCR tests and quarantine still required
The CECC emphasized that in order to ensure continued epidemic prevention, all prospective visitors must provide a negative COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (
Those who chose to undergo quarantine at home must abide by the principle of one person per residence. The center reminds all passengers who want to enter Taiwan to use their mobile phones to complete the Quarantine System for Entry before checking in with the airline or boarding at the departure location.