As part of ongoing efforts to reopen the economy amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, authorities in Georgia will permit a limited number of international flights to resume Nov. 1. Restrictions on direct flights will be lifted between Tbilisi Airport (TBS) and the following destinations:
- Doha Airport (DOH), Warsaw Chopin Airport (WOW), Athens International Airport (ATH), Amsterdam Schipol Airport (AMS), Vienna Airport (VIE), Berlin Schonefeld Airport (SXF), and Bergamo Airport (BGY), Kutaisi Airport (KUT), Katowice Airport (KTW), Vilnius Airport (VNO), Dortmund Airport (DTM), Munich Airport (MUC), Paris Charles de Gaulle (CDG), and Riga International Airport (RIX)
It remains unclear whether Georgian authorities will lift the restriction on the entry of foreign tourists into the country. As of Oct. 21, only citizens and residents of France, Estonia, Germany, Latvia, and Lithuania arriving on direct flights may enter Georgia as tourists provided they can present evidence of a negative polymerase chain reaction (PCR) COVID-19 test taken within the previous 72 hours or submit to a PCR test at the airport of arrival. Citizens of other countries are also permitted to enter Georgia for business purposes, for which they must obtain a special permit. Such travelers must submit to a mandatory eight-day quarantine in a government facility and take an antigen test on the eighth day, or take a PCR test every 72 hours. All arrivals must register with authorities using an online form prior to travel.
Previously, authorities tightened certain restrictions introduced to combat the spread of COVID-19 in the city of Tbilisi and the Imereti region due to increasing infection rates. All restaurants and entertainment venues in these areas must close daily at 2200. Institutions of higher education have reopened despite the rise in cases, though distance learning will continue to be recommended whenever possible. Most businesses and services have already been permitted to resume operation provided they implement strict hygiene and social distancing requirements. Public gatherings of more than 10 people remain prohibited. Protective face coverings must be worn in enclosed public spaces and outdoor spaces where social distancing is not possible.
Authorities could reimpose, extend, further ease, or otherwise amend any restrictions with little-to-no notice depending on disease activity over the coming weeks.
Follow all official instructions. Abide by national health and safety measures. Reconfirm all travel arrangements. Consider delaying traveling if experiencing symptoms associated with COVID-19, as they may prompt increased scrutiny and delays. Liaise with trusted contacts for further updates and guidance. Maintain contact with your diplomatic representation. Ensure contingency plans account for further disruptive measures or extensions of current restrictions. Reconsider and reconfirm nonemergency health appointments. Plan for queues and delays at available shopping centers.
Emphasize basic health precautions, especially frequent handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable. Practice good coughing/sneezing etiquette (i.e., covering coughs and sneezes with a disposable tissue, maintaining distance from others, and washing hands). There is no evidence that the influenza vaccine, antibiotics, or antiviral medications will prevent this disease, highlighting the importance of diligent basic health precautions.