JERUSALEM, Israel – Israel is opening its doors to all foreigners, including unvaccinated visitors, next month.
Beginning on March 1, tourists of all ages will be allowed to visit Israel, so long as they submit to a COVID test before they board their plane to Israel, and another as soon as they arrive at Ben Gurion airport.
Israeli citizens who return from travel abroad only have to take a PCR test upon arriving. Unvaccinated Israelis no longer have to undergo mandatory quarantine so long as they present a negative test upon landing in Israel.
“At the moment, the situation in Israel is good. This is the result of correct and dynamic management; therefore, we are now opening up,” Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said in a statement on Sunday. “At the same time, we will continue to closely monitor the situation and in the event of a new variant, we will again act quickly."
The government also announced it is canceling mandatory weekly COVID tests at elementary and middle schools.
The new guidelines came after Israel’s Health Ministry recommended lifting more virus restrictions last week, citing the steep decline in Omicron cases. Initially, the ministry suggested requiring all tourists over 12-years-old to be vaccinated. However, Tourism Minister Yoel Razvozov strongly opposed the idea.
Israel has also lifted its Green Pass restrictions, which required Israelis to present proof of vaccination, recovery, or a negative COVID test before entering indoor venues like restaurants, gyms, and movie theatres.
Israelis are still mandated to wear masks indoors, but a senior Health official told the Kan public broadcaster that if cases continue to fall, the government may lift the mask requirement soon.