Date updated: November 1, 2020.
Find out the response of Colombia to the COVID-19 pandemic and it’s most recent evolution.
- First phase of international flights was on September 21. Negative PCR (Covid – 19) test will no longer be required to enter but it is mandatory to fill out, before entering the migration, the pre-registration 'Check-Mig', which can be found on the website www.migracioncolombia.gov.co. The initial international flights that were restored were to the United States, Ecuador, Mexico, Bolivia, Brazil, the Dominican Republic and Guatemala. Two days before this reopening, two inaugural flights of this first phase of activation of international air transport were made, with the Rafael Núñez airport in Cartagena as their epicenter.
- The air route to Panama was opened on October 12.
- Beginning of international flights with Peru from October 15. These routes where opened at 5th of October.
- Increase in capacity on Avianca routes from Mexico City, Sao Paulo, Guayaquil and Quito since October 15th.
- The National Government begins the second phase of reactivation of the international operation of international flights on the 1st of October. In phase 2 it is expected to start new international routes as follows:
- From Barranquilla to: Miami, Panama, Curaçao and back.
- From Bucaramanga to Panama and back.
- From Pereira to Panama and back.
- From Armenia to Fort Lauderdale and back.
- The health emergency period has been extended until November 30 regarding an announcement of the President of the Republic of Colombia.
- At September 1, the selective isolation begun, which has no restrictions of transporting people through the national territory, as long as they comply with all biosecurity measures. Local governments could close their borders, however, this decision will have to be endorsed by the National Government.
- On August 31, the Mandatory Preventive Isolation that had been in force in the country since March ended due to the pandemic. As of September 1, a new phase of confinement began, called: Selective isolation, which allows free movement and mobilization in the country. This measure of selective opening in certain sectors of the country according to the implementation of biosafety protocols, would be active throughout the month of October.
Safety measures and protocols
The Colombian Ministry of Health has adopted a general biosafety protocol concerning all economic, social and public administration activities. These measures must be adapted for any and all activities and sectors, implemented by businesses and entities, and complied by all employees in order to minimize COVID-19 transmission as much as possible.
Specifically, the protocols issued by the Colombian government are the following:
- Biosafety protocol for the aeronautic and airport sectors. It applies to all airport, airline and aircraft operators, transport businesses, customs agencies, and air travel passengers in Colombia.
- Biosafety protocol for hotel accommodations, and restaurant, cafeteria and food truck activities.
- Recommendations for epidemic containment in events and venues with high load capacity.
- Biosafety protocol for gastronomic premises and establishments, particularly pertaining to the following economic activities: table-waiting, self-service, cafeteria and catering services.
- The Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism has issued a resolution by means of which the “Safe Travels” Seal of the WorldTravel & Toursim Council (WTTC) is adopted as an additional and support measure for the implementation of biosecurity measures in the sector tourist.
- The implementation of biosecurity protocols has already started in all means of transport.
- The Ministry of Health established biosafety protocols for beaches, including the rental of huts, lockers, hammocks, among other elements in order to reduce the risk of transmission of covid-19 in the development of activities.
- The Ministry of Health published the protocols for a safe return to classes in schools and universities.
- The Ministry of Health issued the biosafety protocols for movie theaters, theaters, drive-ins and auto-events.
- For further info, visit the Ministry of Health’s portal at: https://www.minsalud.gov.co/portada-covid-19.html.
Creation of the “Certified Check-In” biosafety seal for the tourism sector. Some requirements and conditions have been established in order for tourism services, airlines, and tourism-related businesses and areas to obtain this voluntary certification.
For further info, please visit the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism’s portal at: http://bioseguridad.mincit.gov.co/.
At 29th October 1.053.122 confirmed cases were registered in Colombia in the 32 departments of the country, of which 69.423 are active.
Valle del Cauca (81.655)
Norte de Santander (20.937)
La Guajira (9.730)
San Andrés y Providencia (1.865)
There are 950.348 recovered patients and 30.926 deceased.
Measures in favor of the industry
Relief measures issued by the national government
1 VAT exemption for all tourism and hotel services until 31 December 2020.
2 Temporary suspension of energy surcharge tax for hotels, themed parks and leisure establishments.
3 Income tax advance payment exemption for travel and air transport agencies.
4 Postponement of parafiscal payments in order to allow increased cash flow during Q3 and Q4 2020.
5 Monetary relief for tourism guides for three months.
6 Deadline extension for National Tourism Tax returns until October 30th 2020.
7 International travel ticket sales to resume on 1 September 2020.
8 Special Bancóldex Credit Line “Colombia Responde” created for COP 250 billion.
9 The Sustainable Tourism Policy project is now available to strengthen the sustainability of the tourism value chain in Colombia, improve its competitiveness, guarantee the conservation and responsible use of natural capital, and generate greater added value and differentiation for the country. This proposal includes some reforms regarding the improve of sustainable practices in tourism.
10 Colombian Government will grant $16 million dollars to small and medium-sized companies in the tourism sector through the ´Colombia Emprende e Innova- sector turismo´ program. Companies will be able to access amounts of up to $ 200 million, a payment term up to 3 years and a grace period of up to 12 months due to finance working capital or costs and expenses associated with the implementation of biosecurity measures.