Indonesia Updates Covid-19 Restrictions for International Flights

The Indonesian Ministry of Transportation has updated its guidelines to allow both Indonesian citizens and foreign nationals to enter Indonesia through a restricted number of entry points, subject to adherence to comprehensive health protocols.

These new guidelines are contained in Minister of Transportation (“Moth”) Circular Letter No. 12/2022 (“CL 12/22”) concerning Guidelines for the Implementation of Overseas Travel (Pelaksanaan Perjalanan Luar Negeri or “PPLN”) by Air Transportation during the Covid-19 Pandemic. It entered into force on February 7, 2022. These guidelines complement the health protocols stipulated in Covid-19 Task Force Circular Letter No. 4 or 2022 (“Covid-19 Task Force CL 4/22“) and revised by MoT Circular Letter No. 11/2022 (“Previous MoT CL

The Previous MoT CL initially limited the entry points to three airports, but the revision by CL 12/22 added Soekarno-Hatta International Airport in Tangerang, just outside the Indonesian capital, Jakarta, as an authorized entry point for PPLN with tourism purposes.

With the entry into force of CL 12/22, there are now four airports named as entry points by the MoT. They are Soekarno-Hatta Airport, I Gusti Ngurah Rai International Airport in Bali, Hang Nadim International Airport in Batam, and Raja Haji Fisabilillah International Airport in Tanjung Pinang, Riau Islands. Hang Nadim Airport only accommodates overseas scheduled commercial flights, and Raja Haji Fisabilillah Airport only accommodates overseas non-scheduled commercial flights.

The extent of the current restrictions and the health protocols imposed by CL 12/22 are elaborated below.

Entry Requirements

There are no restrictions on Indonesian citizens flying into Indonesia, as long as they comply with the protocols stipulated by the government, ie, prior vaccination, testing, and quarantine. There is a temporary restriction on foreign nationals who wish to fly into Indonesia, whereby foreign nationals must fulfill one of the following conditions prior to entry:

  1. Having fulfilled the visa rules as stipulated in Minister of Law and Human Rights Regulation No. 34 of 2021 regarding the Granting of Immigration Visas and Stay Permits in the Period of Handling the Spread of Covid-19 and National Economic Recovery;
  2. Entering Indonesia according to a bilateral agreement scheme, such as a travel corridor arrangement; and/or
  3. Having received special consideration or permission in writing from an Indonesian ministry or agency.

Foreign nationals must also present proof of health insurance with minimum coverage of US$25,000, which will cover their healthcare costs if they require treatment for Covid-19 in Indonesia. Foreign nationals must also present proof of accommodation booking confirmation and payment to the accommodation provider while staying in Indonesia.

Vaccination & RT-PCR Testing

Indonesian citizens and foreign nationals must present a card or certificate (physical or digital) that proves they are fully vaccinated against Covid-19 at least 14 days before departure as a requirement to enter Indonesia. For foreign nationals, the full-dose vaccination card or certificate must be in English, alongside the original language if other than English.

This requirement to present a full-dose vaccination card does not apply to the following foreign nationals:

  1. Holders of diplomatic or service visas for ministerial or other high-level visits, and foreigners who enter Indonesia under a travel corridor arrangement;
  2. Foreign nationals transiting within Indonesian territory for departure outside Indonesia, provided that they do not leave the airport while waiting for their departure flight and present proof of authorization to conduct domestic travel for the limited purpose;
  3. Foreign nationals under 18 years old; and
  4. Foreign nationals with health conditions precluding vaccination, which shall be certified by a doctor from their country/region of origin.

The following categories of unvaccinated foreign nationals must undergo vaccination at the quarantine facility upon arrival in Indonesia through a program or mutual cooperation scheme in accordance with applicable laws and regulations in Indonesia after testing negative at the end of quarantine (see Quarantine below):

  1. Foreign nationals aged 12-17 years;
  2. Holders of diplomatic residence permit and official residence permit; and/or
  3. Holders of limited stay permit (KITAS) and permanent residence permit (KITAP).

Foreign nationals who are already in Indonesia and will travel, both domestically and internationally, are required to be vaccinated. In addition, foreign nationals are required to use the PeduliLindungi application as a condition to enter Indonesian territory.

Prior to entry to Indonesia, travelers must present a negative RT-PCR test taken at the latest 2 x 24 hours before the departure time in the country/region of origin. This test result must be presented during the official health check upon arrival. This is shorter than the 3 x 24 hours imposed by the previous Covid-19 Task Force Circular Letter No. 2 or 2022 (“Previous COVID-19 CL

Upon arrival, another RT-PCR shall be carried out before overseas travelers undergo quarantine. Overseas travelers that test positive but show mild to no symptoms must be isolated in a hotel or facility determined by the government, while those who show medium to severe symptoms and/or accompanied by uncontrolled comorbidities must be treated at a hospital. The costs of isolation and/or treatment for Indonesian citizens are covered by the Indonesian government, while foreign nationals shall undergo isolation and/or treatment at their own expense. This changes the requirement in the Previous COVID-19 CL, whereby all travelers who tested positive had to be hospitalized regardless of the severity of the symptoms.

quarantine

All PPLN travelers must undergo centralized quarantine for a period of 5 x 24 hours for fully vaccinated travelers and 7 x 24 hours for travelers who have only received the first dose of vaccination. CL 12/22 reduces the quarantine period under the Previous COVID-19 CL, which required a quarantine period of 7 x 24 for all travelers regardless of vaccination status.

In line with the Previous COVID-19 CL, certain categories of Indonesian citizens are eligible for Indonesian government-funded quarantine at designated facilities. These categories include Indonesian migrant workers and students finishing their studies abroad, government officials traveling home from official visits, and Indonesian delegates returning from international competitions or festivals. Indonesian citizens who do not fall into these categories, as well as foreign nationals and foreign diplomats (other than the head of mission and their family) must undergo quarantine in a centralized quarantine accommodation at their own expense† The quarantine accommodation must bear the recommendation of the Covid-19 Task Force.

A second RT-PCR test will be carried out on the fourth day of quarantine for overseas travelers quarantining for 5 x 24 hours, and on the sixth day of quarantine for overseas travelers with a quarantine duration of 7 x 24 hours. A negative test result will release the overseas travelers from quarantine on the day after the test. If the test result is positive, the rules regarding isolation and treatment of Indonesian citizens and foreign nationals shall apply (see Vaccination & RT-PCR Testing above).

Exemptions may be afforded to the heads of foreign missions serving in Indonesia and their families, who may instead undergo self-quarantine. The following categories of foreign nationals may also be excluded from the quarantine requirement in its entirety:

  1. Holders of diplomatic visas and service visas;
  2. Foreign officials at the ministerial level and above and their entourages making official/state visits;
  3. Travelers entering Indonesia through a travel corridor scheme;
  4. Delegations of G20 member countries; and
  5. Travelers who are “honorable and distinguished persons”, which is defined by Covid-19 Task Force CL 4/22 as former heads of states or former heads of government, and individuals of high social and economic standing in the eyes of the international community, such as Nobel laureates, global religious leaders, global community leaders, and global economic figures.

Qualified foreign nationals must submit a request to the Covid-19 Task Force for an exemption at least seven days before arrival in Indonesia. An exemption may be granted on a limited and selective basis in consultation with the relevant institutions. Indonesian citizens who have urgent reasons, eg, life-threatening health condition, chronic illness, or bereavement travel, may also request an exclusion from the quarantine requirement in its entirety. This exclusion must be requested at the latest three days before arrival in Indonesia.

Protocols for Airline Operators and Personnel

CL 12/22 imposes on airline operators and personnel the obligation to inform and ensure that passengers comply with the health protocols, including checking the required documentation and information for compliance with the applicable entry requirements. CL 12/22 also regulates the handling of cargo aircraft from high-risk countries, such as rules on isolated parking areas, disinfection, and personal protective equipment for ground handling personnel.

Personnel of foreign-registered and Indonesian-registered aircraft are required to present proof of full-dose vaccination, except for personnel of transit flights who do not leave the vessel. All personnel must have a negative RT-PCR test result 3 x 24 hours at the latest before time of departure. Personnel may disembark to transit or for an overnight stay in a special area or facility provided by the aircraft operator within the airport after taking another RT-PCR test at the airport of arrival, with the obligation not to leave the airport premises and subject to supervision by the airline operator and airport authorities. All personnel who test positive for Covid-19 shall be hospitalized at the expense of the relevant personnel or the airline, except for Indonesian citizens who are personnel of Indonesian-registered aircraft, whose costs will be covered by the Indonesian government. (11 Feb 2022)

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