Here we are sharing a report about traveling from Europe to Chile during COVID-19 pandemic.
Beginning of November 2020 our Key Account Manager, Angela and her 2-years old daughter, travelled back from Switzerland (Angela´s birth country) to her home in southern Chile. A lot of uncertainties accompanied the travel plans. This because traveling restrictions changed frequently due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In this blog we would like to share some recommendations, that should help organizing your next trip to Chile.
The most important fact first: The whole trip turned out to be completely stress free and almost more pleasant than before the pandemic! All the staff at the airports, the flight attendants and immigration officers were extremely friendly, helpful and happy to be able to attend tourists again. The fact, that less people are traveling at the moment makes the whole atmosphere at the airport and the planes more peaceful.
We traveled with a private car to the airport to avoid using public transportation. While the baggage drop-off they already asked for our health declaration form for Chile. We boarded our plane in Zurich, had to change flight at Amsterdam and enjoyed then a direct flight to Santiago de Chile. Adults have to wear face masks all over the trip, while kids up to 10 years (depending on the airline) do not have to use them. Upon arrival to Santiago de Chile, we had to pass by a control station of the National Health Department. At that point, they measured our temperature. Here we had to informe, where we are going to pass the 14-day quarantine. This is not mandatory any more (for most travelers), showing a negative PCR test. (More details about the actual travel documents entering Chile at the end of this blog)
Passing this first control we continued to the immigration control and the baggage claim before passing the agriculture and livestock service (SAG) as usual.
Before you travel to the airport you should know the exact hour you should arrive. It is also good to know what to bring and what to leave at home. Everything begins with how you feel; if you have a fever, or minor complaints such as the common cold, runny nose, sneezing, sore throat or a mild cough, you should stay at home. Your health and that of your fellow travellers is what is considered to be the most important thing during this pandemic. That is why most airports/airlines require a health declaration form.
Prepare your flight:
- Check-in online or via the application of your airline (Many airlines allow you to check in online, which means one less interaction. Then all you have to do is drop off your baggage in the departure hall)
- Bring enough face masks (you should change them at least every 3 hours or whenever they get humid)
- Carry your own hand sanitiser with you in your hand baggage. The capacity of the hand sanitizer container cannot exceed 100ml.
- Check if you need a health declaration form for the departure, transit and final destination
- Of course you will have to bring all mandatory documents (passport, visa if required and all documents required from your transit and final destination – Check all the travel documents entering Chile here)
- If possible go to the airport alone and/or in a private transportation
- Get to the airport with enough time (follow the recommendations of the airport and airline you are travelling with)
At the airports
Most of the restaurants and shops are open so you will always find something to refresh, eat or shop at the airports.
Throughout the flight
At the moment most of the planes are not fully booked. This allows the airlines to separate passengers from each others and give them more space. During our flight to Santiago de Chile with KLM, we could use a whole row of three seats, which allowed us stretch our legs throughout the whole flight.
Food is served almost as usual, only the snacks between the main dishes are served in plastic bags.
The airlines recommend to stay on your seat whenever possible. Whenever you need assistant, you can call the flight attendants, they will be happy helping you with your issues.
Aircraft are equipped with HEPA filters in their cabins, which remove 99.97% of particles and bacteria, including the Sars-CoV-2 virus. Moreover, the air inside an aircraft is completely renewed every 2 to 3 minutes. The airflow drags the particles from above to foot level (vertically), further lowering their concentration and preventing the air from mixing across the rows. That is why physical distancing is not decisive within the air cabins, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
All these measures, together with proper and mandatory use of face masks, make the cabins as sanitary as an operating room. (source: Santiago Nuevo Pudahuel Airport)
Travel documents to enter Chile
These are the actual required travel documents for non-residents entering Chile:
- Negative PCR test performed 72 hours before travelling. In flights with intermediate stops, this is considered from the last boarding.
- Fill out the Traveler’s Affidavit electronically, and up to 48 hours before boarding at www.c19.cl
- Health insurance that covers medical treatment for COVID-19 during your stay, with a minimum coverage of USD$30,000.
Between November 23th and December 7th anybody arriving from countries with community transmission of COVID-19 must go under a 14-day mandatory quarantine, even if you have a PCR (-).
Check the updated information: OMS Weekly epidemiological update
Here you can find the official recommendations about traveling to Chile this 2020.
All information without guarantee. Changes at short notice possible