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Latest News: Government extends COVID-19 lockdown until 4 June (Xinhua, 20.05.2021). Government extends lockdown restrictions until 20 May (, 04.05.2021).

International Restrictions:

*Entry to Laos: The government of the Lao PDR has suspended the visa on arrival service at all international entry points. No visas are being issued to people travelling from a country with cases of COVID-19, including the UK. However, the Lao authorities may consider granting special entry permission for foreigners (experts, technicians and foreign nationals that are needed for essential projects) who wish to come to Laos.

Entry procedures for Laos visa-holders:

• all foreigners must present a Certificate of Entry (issued by the MFA); a completed Health Declaration form; and a ‘Fit to Fly’ Certificate issued no more than 72 hours prior to travel. You should arrange to take a private test

• all arrivals will be subject to a COVID-19 test at their own expense. Positive cases will be admitted to hospital for treatment

• all negative cases have to undergo 14 days quarantine at designated locations (with all expenses covered by individuals or their organisations/companies)

The application form for the health declaration is available on the official website for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Due to the impacts of coronavirus the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will continue to extend visas in country and be flexible if visas cannot be extended before the due date for operational reasons because of the new regulations.

*Screening on arrival: There is compulsory testing for COVID-19 on arrival in Laos at your own expense. Those testing positive will be admitted to hospital for treatment.

Enhanced health screening is in place at border crossings between Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam where restricted access is allowed. You should allow additional time to include this possibility and check with your airline if travelling by air.

Anybody travelling to Laos with a fever, cough or difficulty breathing, and a travel history from coronavirus affected countries, will be isolated in hospital and tested. The hospitals being used are Mittaphab, Mahosot, Setthathirath and the National Military Hospital (103).

*Quarantine requirements: All arrivals testing negative for COVID-19 will have to undergo 14 days quarantine at designated locations, which include hotels (with all expenses covered by individuals or their organisations/companies). A mandatory tracking device is fitted on arrival (a rental fee applies) to be worn during quarantine.

All travellers must have insurance covering COVID-19; a suitable policy is available for purchase on arrival.

*Testing on departure: There is no compulsory COVID testing on departure from Laos. You should check all conditions of air ticket purchases carefully with airlines as some may need evidence of a negative COVID test to travel.

Internal Restrictions:

*Travel in Laos: The suspension of all internal flights and public transport options in Laos has been extended until 4 June 2021. Travel into and out of Vientiane Capital is prohibited. The majority of provinces across Laos are now in lockdown. Please monitor local official announcements for guidance in the latest restrictions.

*Thailand land border: The Thai government has announced that all Thailand-Laos border crossings are restricted until further notice, including the Friendship Bridge between Vientiane and Nong Khai. Commercial goods are permitted to cross at present and there have been exemptions for medical emergencies at the discretion of the Laos and Thai medical authorities. If you want to travel to Thailand, you must apply for permission to travel via the Royal Thai Government’s online platform. You should keep up to date with the latest information on the websites of the Thai Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Royal Thai Embassy in Vientiane, and the Thai Ministry of Public Health.

*Accommodation: Hotels and private rental accommodation is available throughout Laos, although a number of hotels/hostels are currently closed due to reduced tourist numbers. You should arrange accommodation in advance of travel.

*Public places and services: Most businesses including gyms/spas, sports facilities, night markets, cinemas, casinos and tourist attractions are closed. Some businesses, restaurants, shops and food markets may be open. In some locations COVID preventative measures are in place. These may include providing alcohol gel, face masks being worn, and checking temperatures.

Large social gatherings, weddings and traditional events are not. On 21 April, a notice from the Prime Minister’s Office ordered a lockdown of Vientiane Capital. We understand that the main restrictions are:

• People may only leave their residences for essential purposes (e.g. medical treatment or buying groceries)

• Non-essential workers should work from home

• Travel into and out of Vientiane Capital is prohibited.

• Meetings, events or gatherings of more than 20 people are prohibited

• Entertainment venues, karaoke venues, bars, internet cafes, spas, and gyms are closed.

These additional COVID-19 prevention measures have been introduced with immediate effect and has been extended until 4 June 2021. Vientiane Capital has introduced a zoning system, with different parts of the city graded red, yellow or green - restrictions are heaviest in the red areas. Please be advised these zones may change over time.

Further measures may be introduced at short notice. You should follow the advice of the Lao authorities.

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