Why was Morocco closed to tourists for 16 weeks?

One of many longest journey bans on British travellers is ready to finish on Monday, 7 February.

Morocco banned direct flights from the UK – in addition to Germany and the Netherlands – on 20 October.

Repatriation flights had been dispatched empty from British airports to select up passengers who had been on vacation and as a result of return.

The next month Morocco’s frontiers had been closed to all arrivals from overseas.

The chief govt of the Moroccan Nationwide Vacationer Workplace (MNTO), Adel El Fakir, advised The Impartial that the 16-week closure to UK flights was selected well being grounds.

“All the choices which have been taken, be it by Morocco or any nation throughout this pandemic, has relied on the well being scenario – nothing else,” he mentioned.

“We’re coping with this case each day. Our job is to guarantee that, once we can function the flights and the journey business, we’ll do it in one of the best situation for the friends.

“The entire sector right now may be very excited to welcome again individuals from all over the world, particularly the UK.

“Welcome is in our DNA.”

Though journey will probably be allowed from Monday, the primary direct departures from the UK will probably be on Thursday 10 February :

  • British Airways from London Heathrow to Marrakech
  • Tui from London Gatwick to Agadir
  • Ryanair from Manchester to Agadir
  • Royal Air Maroc from London Gatwick to Casablanca

Mr El Fakir mentioned that home tourism had been sturdy in December and January, and that hoteliers had been reporting new bookings.

Initially, travellers to Morocco should current proof of vaccination go plus a adverse PCR take a look at outcome lower than 48 hours outdated earlier than boarding the airplane.

The MNTO says: “Upon arrival at airports, they are going to be screened by speedy assessments. Random PCR assessments will even be performed for a number of teams of travellers and outcomes will probably be communicated at a later date.

“Inside 48 hours of getting into the nation, some travellers will probably be required to take a further take a look at on the lodge or residence centre.

“If the assessments are constructive, different preventive measures will probably be carried out.”

Masks-wearing is obligatory in lots of settings in Morocco, together with on public transport, outlets, lodge receptions, museums, cinemas, theatres, when transferring round cafés and eating places and in “playgrounds, inexperienced areas and public nature parks”.

Masks are additionally obligatory if there may be multiple particular person in a automotive.

Mr El Fakir mentioned that measures are reviewed “on a weekly foundation”.

Marrakech is internet hosting the annual conference of Abta, the journey affiliation, in October. The occasion has been postponed twice because of the coronavirus pandemic.

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