As some governments across the globe gingerly reopen air routes in an attempt to reignite trade and allow citizens to return home, the requirements for travelling between any two countries in an era of an easily transmissible coronavirus in the wild are subject to change with little or no notice.
To add to the confusion some government are doing a worse than poor job on detailing their national requirements, with one person saying one thing, a different official something else, and a third version reported in government mouthpieces. Unsurprisingly misinformation and incomplete information abounds.
In the video above posted to YouTube by Kelsey Sry on June 7, the videoblogger describes the procedures and processes leading up to and during her flight from Phnom Penh to LAX via Seoul on Korean Air.
The one significant difference to the information provided in the video above is that since Ms Sry’s journey, foreigners entering Cambodia are required to make a $3,000 per person deposit on arrival to cover the initial COVID-19 screening and waiting centre costs, plus any potential quarantining or hospitalisation.
Under the Cambodian user pays system the minimum entry cost on top of any visa fee is now $265. (Ed: Tourist visas and visa on arrival are not currently available for Cambodia)
In the almost 10-minute-long video Ms Sry, who travelled on a US passport with a K-visa for entry into Cambodia, describes the documents required, the process of obtaining them and then her first-hand experience on the flight.
While the flight to South Korea was heavily patronised, including by several Australians, identified by their colourful vocabulary, the flight to the US was considerably less full.
Other passengers, Ms Sry said, wore considerably better protective equipment (PPE) than her, describing passengers wearing eye, mouth, nose, and hand protection, hazmat suits, and disposable raincoats.
Seoul’s lifeless Incheon
Forced to endure a 12-hour-long layover at the almost deserted and lifeless Seoul Incheon International Airport, Ms Sry says she was snubbed by a robot health worker; found all of the water dispensers had been made inoperative; and was left looking hungrily at the food display advertising outside of shuttered eateries.
Salvation was at hand on her onward flight, with Ms Sry saying the food was so good she would fly on Korean Air again if she had the money.
The use of K-pop group SuperM and K-pop singer BoA to deliver the pre-flight safety instructions also caught her attention.
Along the way Ms Sry describes having her temperature checked and various health forms collected and questions asked, with arrival at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) being somewhat of an anti-climax.
Self isolation and quarantine, she was told, was optional. As a responsible videoblogger, Ms Sry has done the responsible thing, using her time alone to put together the video above.
Ms Sry said that she was a surprised at the relaxed processing on arrival in the USA, describing a strict check-in process in Phnom Penh by staff wearing eye, nose, mouth and hand protection.
Feature video Kelsey Sry
- International travel in the age of COVID-19: Cambodia leads the world with user pays system (AEC News Today)
- Business says new rules akin to a travel ban (Khmer Times)
- COVID-19: Cambodia’s Measures on Travel Restriction (Zico Law)
Between November 2010 and February 2012 she was a staff writer at Daylight Online, Nigeria writing on health, fashion, and relationships. From 2010 – 2017 she worked as a freelance screen writer for ‘Nollywood’, Nigeria.
She joined AEC News Today in December 2016.
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