Health and Travel Alert: Update on Travel and COVID-19 Testing Requirements (June 3, 2021)

Health and Travel Alert: Update on Travel and COVID-19 Testing Requirements

Location: Papua New Guinea

Event: Update on Travel and COVID-19 Testing Requirements

U.S. citizens in Papua New Guinea are advised of the following updates regarding COVID-19 emergency measures, domestic and international travel, and COVID-19 testing requirements.

  • On May 27, 2021, the Office of the Controller issued an amendment to Measure 3 regarding domestic travel, originally issued May 13, 2021. The amendment eliminates the requirement to obtain a COVID-19 test for the purpose of domestic air travel. The May 13 Measures and the May 27 amendment may be found here and here, respectively.
  • On June 1, 2021, Air Niugini issued a media release advising customers that the PCR tests it conducts, in partnership with International SOS, immediately prior to check-in are sufficient for purposes of outbound international travel on its routes and that customers do not need to obtain their own PCR test within 72 hours of their scheduled departure.
  • U.S. citizens are advised that Air Niugini’s tests also satisfy the requirements of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s January 12 Order regarding COVID-19 testing and travel / entry to the United States. Therefore, travelers en route to the United States do not need to obtain an additional COVID-19 test.
  • The Embassy has become aware of a small number of U.S. citizens who have fully recovered from COVID-19 but continue to test positive and, as a result, have faced challenges departing Papua New Guinea en route to the United States. U.S. citizens in these circumstances are advised to contact ConsularPortMoresby@state.gov for advice and assistance as needed.
  • The Embassy continues to have capacity to provide all routine and emergency passport services to U.S. citizens in Papua New Guinea. Notwithstanding, on May 21, 2021, U.S. Customs and Border Protection issued a global bulletin to commercial air service providers advising that U.S. citizens may directly return to the United States with certain expired passports until December 31, 2021. U.S. citizens who believe they have a need to take advantage of this temporary policy are advised to contact ConsularPortMoresby@state.gov for advice and assistance as needed.

The Embassy continues to update its own COVID-19 information page, including the status of consular services and a summary of international transportation options and requirements. The Embassy does not provide health and medical services to private U.S. citizens and cannot make travel arrangements.

The U.S. government does not plan to provide COVID-19 vaccinations to private U.S. citizens overseas. Please follow host country developments and guidelines for COVID-19 vaccination.

Actions to Take:

  • Contact provincial and district health officials to inquire about the availability of vaccination services
  • Avoid non-essential domestic and international travel and take steps to avoid exposure by yourself, your family, and your community to COVID-19
  • Follow the direction of provincial and national governments and health authorities
  • Monitor local media and the PNG government’s COVID-19 portal for up-to-date information on the national situation
  • Monitor the Embassy’s COVID-19 information page for updates on international travel and consular services
  • Consult the CDC website for the up-to-date information on COVID-19
  • Review the Department of State’s COVID-19 crisis page for the latest information on international travel and for a listing of other U.S. Embassies’ COVID-19 information pages

Travel Between PNG and the United States:

  • Carefully review Air Niugini’s travel advice and the “Transportation Options” section of the Embassy’s COVID-19 information page
  • Note that the Embassy’s summary of transportation options is provided for informational purposes only; we cannot make travel arrangements and we cannot direct air service providers
  • Be prepared to take a PCR COVID-19 test at Jacksons International Airport (POM) and arrive at the airport 4-5 hours in advance of your scheduled departure in order to allow sufficient time for the testing process
  • Test results or documentation to be used for travel should include the traveler’s full name, date of birth, and passport number
  • Consult the CDC’s Frequently Asked Questions about U.S. COVID-19 testing requirements, including for information about extended itineraries with transits in third countries
  • Pay close attention to transit requirements in third countries, including routing, ticketing, and COVID-19 testing requirements, as well maximum transit times
  • Work with airlines directly or with a reputable travel agent who is familiar with PNG, Air Niugini, and Air Niugini’s partner airlines
  • If you transit Singapore or Hong Kong, ensure that you have a consolidated itinerary issued as a single ticket and that you and your baggage can be checked from Port Moresby to first U.S. port of entry
  • If you transit Brisbane or Sydney for more than eight hours, obtain a Subclass 771 transit visa; note that domestic travel within Australia, even to catch onward international flights, is not viable
  • If your transit in Australia is less than eight hours or you are allowed to remain in the airport for the duration of transit, ensure that your bags can be checked through to your first U.S. port of entry
  • If you transit Brisbane, complete this online form within 72 hours of your travel
  • If you transit Sydney, obtain the required quarantine exemption from the New South Wales government; see here for more on transiting in New South Wales

Assistance:

U.S. Embassy Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea
Phone number: +675 308 2100
Email address: ConsularPortMoresby@state.gov
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/usembassyportmoresby/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/usembassypom?lang=en

U.S. State Department – Consular Affairs
+1 888 407 4747 or +1 202 501 4444
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