Traveling to Tunisia from the UK in 2020

Posted on July 8, 2020 Edited & Updated on July 9, 2020

Important UPDATE: During the evening of July 8, 2020 the Tunisian authorities changed the UK status from Orange to Green.


Since Tunisia officially reopened its borders on June 27, 2020 I’ve received so many questions from my followers at the Tunisia Security Update.

Here’s an example of a recent question:

“Hello, my friend is hoping to travel to Tunisia to be at his sisters engagement in a few months. What is the requirements for when he lands there does he have to go in Quarantine for a few days or is it safe for him to go right to his family’s home?  Thanks for your answer.”

After replying to quite a few similar questions I thought I should just write a blog post for all my British followers. Hopefully the information will also help out all travelers wanting to know what Tunisia’s COVID19 travel requirements.

A woman wearing mask and gloves as a precautionary measure to avoid contracting coronavirus work at Tunisia Airport in Tunis, Tunisia February 29, 2020. REUTERS/Zoubeir Souissi – RC2IAF9TO130

Tunisia Entry requirements for British Citizens

Before going into the entry requirements let’s take a moment to give credit where credit is due.

Tunisia received international praise for their COVID-19 response. After three months of closure, Tunisia began easing its lockdown on 13 May. Tunisia now reports very few instances of COVID-19, with a total of 1,110 cases and 49 deaths for its 11 million citizens. 

Tunisia’s Prime Minister Elyes Fakhfakh said the country recorded among the lowest mortality rate from COVID-19 in the world “with four deaths per million inhabitants.”

 The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) also recognized Tunisia’s successful response and awarded them the world’s first ever global safety and hygiene stamp.

WTTC, which represents the global Travel & Tourism private sector, designed the Safe Travels stamp to enable travellers to identify destinations and businesses around the world which adopted its health and hygiene global standardised protocols.

Entry requirements

It is important to note that the Tunisian authorities are constantly evaluating the situation and making changes as needed. As a best practice, travelers should always look to their respective embassy for travel guidance and make their own decisions.

British tourists have their photo taken after arriving to Tunisia with the Thomas Cook travel agency at the Enfidha Airport in Enfidha, Tunisia February 14, 2019 (Reuters)

Tunisia has implemented a color-coded system to show which countries may enter without restrictions and which countries can enter with enhanced restrictions.

  • Green= Welcome to Tunisia. NO Restrictions. Enjoy your holidays!
  • Orange= Welcome to Tunisia. Comply with the safety protocol. Enjoy your holidays!

The UK is currently classified as an “Orange”country changed to GREEN on the evening of July 8, 2020 by the Ministry of Health .

As of July 8, 2020 here are the COVID-19 entry options:

  1. Take a coronavirus PCR test 72 hours before departure and provide the negative results upon arrival. OR
  2. Self-isolating in your place of residence or a hotel at your own expense for 14 days.

Additionally, if British citizens want to shorten the self-isolation, they may do so from the sixth day after arrival, by paying for a PCR test and receiving a negative result in Tunisia.

Know before you go!

The world agrees that Tunisia’s response to the pandemic was effective. Regardless, travelers must ensure that they conduct their own research and take necessary measures before traveling. In order to accomplish this INFORMATION is essential Here are (3) good sources to obtain the latest information:

I hope this information helps. Feel free to reach out if I can be of any assistance. For companies operating in Tunisia learn how you can obtain reliable & actionable security information to address your risk management concerns.


Tunisia targeted lockdown measures are proving effective

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Update Icon of Colored Outline style - Available in SVG, PNG, EPS ...UPDATE:  Tunisia targeted lockdown measures are proving effective as it marked 3 consective days without any new confirmed COVID-19 cases.

Source: NFA, May 12, 2020

Employees at a Tunisian factory are churning out 50,000 face masks a day and other protective medical gear.

Data Insight Svg Png Icon Free Download (#532568) - OnlineWebFonts.COMKey INSIGHT:  Director General of the National Observatory of New and Emerging Diseases Nissaf Ben Alaya said:

“It would take at least 40 days without any new infection to be able to say that Tunisia has gone beyond this phase, due to the fact that the zero case does not mean that the virus no longer exists.”

Security | Free IconSecurity INSIGHT: Tunisia has started to ease lockdown measures, pointing to the relative success of the restrictions it imposed early on in the pandemic.  although schools will largely remain closed until September. Hairdressers officially opened on Monday, while cafes and mosques are due to reopen on 24 May.

Tunisia Receives Drones from China to aid COVID-19 fight

Tunisia’s nationwide lockdown began March 22, when it had just 75 confirmed cases. The UK, by contrast, did not impose a national lockdown until it had over 6,000 cases, while Italy did not go ahead with the measure until it recorded more than 9,000. Tunisia also took the early step of quarantining patients with mild symptoms in designated facilities such as hotels rather than allowing them to isolate at home as in Italy — a policy that doctors now say was a fatal flaw.


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Globe Planet Travel Plane Svg Png Icon F #1505326 - PNG Images - PNGioTravel:  At the time of this writing, both the U.S. and UK embassies advises against all but essential international travel

Authorities strictly enforced lockdown measures in high-risk areas, patrolling the streets and even arresting those in violation of quarantine and social distancing regulations.

Civil society groups and private businesses also played an important role in helping fight the virus. Some 150 Tunisian employees of a factory helped make face masks more accessible by self-isolating at their facility in order to produce 50,000 per day. Meanwhile, numerous start-ups and civil society groups mobilized to develop and provide innovative medical protective gear to hospitals and deliver aid packages to those in need.



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Traveling family ‘stuck’ on a Mediterranean island due to Covid-19

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Update Icon of Colored Outline style - Available in SVG, PNG, EPS ...UPDATE: As the novel coronavirus stops globetrotters and other adventure travelers in their tracks, one French family of nomads is waiting out the lockdown on a Tunisian island in the Mediterranean.

Source: AFP, May 8th 2020

Data Insight Svg Png Icon Free Download (#532568) - OnlineWebFonts.COMKey Article INSIGHTTunisia has officially declared over 600 positive Covid-19 cases, including 25 deaths, since reporting its first case at the beginning of March.

Tunisia has officially declared over 600 positive Covid-19 cases, including 25 deaths, since reporting its first case at the beginning of March.

Security | Free IconSecurity INSIGHT: Tunisia started the first stage of the national strategy for a partial lifting of lockdown which includes three phases: from May 4 to 24, from May 24 to June 4, and from June 4 to 14.

Globe Planet Travel Plane Svg Png Icon F #1505326 - PNG Images - PNGioTravel:  At the time of this writing, both the U.S. and UK embassies advises against all but essential international travel.


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Tunisia RE-OPENS …May the 4th be with them!

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Update Icon of Colored Outline style - Available in SVG, PNG, EPS ...UPDATE: Tunisia on Monday relaxed lockdown measures with an initial phase of gradual reopening for the vital sectors of the economy, society and exports.

Source: AAWSAT, May 4th 2020

Data Insight Svg Png Icon Free Download (#532568) - OnlineWebFonts.COMKey Article INSIGHT: Tunisian officials reported that it had recorded four new COVID-19 infections in the country over the previous 24 hours, bringing the total number to 1,013. The health ministry statement noted that 42 people who had tested positive for the virus had died in the country and that 328 have recovered thus far.

Security | Free IconSecurity INSIGHT:  Over the last few days there’s been an uptick in civil discontent in response to the government’s COVID-19 response.  While the issue was addressed by government officials, the development adds additional risk to organizations in Tunisia.

COVID-19 will have a NEGATIVE IMPACT on Tunisian Tourism…

Globe Planet Travel Plane Svg Png Icon F #1505326 - PNG Images - PNGioTravel:

The US embassy is working to schedule one additional repatriation flight for US citizens on May 7. See details here:

At the time of this writing, both the U.S. and UK embassies advises against all but essential international travel.


Operating in Tunisia?

Find out how you can have access to reliable security information & support.


 

Tunisia to REOPEN Economy in Stages…

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Update Icon of Colored Outline style - Available in SVG, PNG, EPS ...UPDATE: Tunisia to reopen economy in stages…

The lockdown will begin to be eased on May 4. Further easing after May 11 will include clothing shops and malls

Data Insight Svg Png Icon Free Download (#532568) - OnlineWebFonts.COMKey Article INSIGHT:  The lockdown will begin to be eased on May 4. Further easing after May 11 will include clothing shops and malls, said Lobna Jribi, the minister in charge of major projects.

Tentative Stages: 

Stage 1 – May 4th- “Essential Workers + Supporting elements”

What you need to know:  On May 4th, a gradual lifting of the confinement measures will take place. The confinement measures will vary slightly from region to region and includes essential workers and workers in supporting ministries & industries.

Stage 2- May 11th “General Public” Re-open

This stage will include the general public including clothing shops, coffee shops and open markets.

Important to NOTE:  The Tunisian government will provide further detail about the new measures before May 4th.  


Security | Free IconSecurity  INSIGHT: The lockdown, according to Health Minister Abdelatif el-Makki has stopped 25,000 cases of the virus and 1,000 deaths.  Tunisia, has about 500 intensive care beds, has confirmed fewer than 1,000 cases in all.


Globe Planet Travel Plane Svg Png Icon F #1505326 - PNG Images - PNGioTravel:  At the time of this writing both the U.S. and UK embassies advises against all but essential international travel.


Operating in Tunisia?

Find out how you can have access to reliable security information & support.


 

Annual Jewish pilgrimage to Tunisia’s Ghriba synagogue CANCELED

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Update Icon of Colored Outline style - Available in SVG, PNG, EPS ...UPDATE: Annual pilgrimage to Tunisia’s Ghriba synagogue CANCELED.

Jews gather at the Ghriba synagogue in Tunisia’s Mediterranean resort island of Djerba on the first day of the annual Jewish pilgrimage to the synagogue on May 2, 2018. (AFP Photo/Fethi Belaid)-Source: TOI April 21, 2020


Data Insight Svg Png Icon Free Download (#532568) - OnlineWebFonts.COMKey Article INSIGHT: The annual pilgrimage was scheduled for May 7-13.  Hundreds of Israelis, many of them of Tunisian origin, traditionally visit the synagogue for the annual pilgrimage.

The Jewish community on Djerba dates back nearly 2,600 years, much longer than the Christian or Muslim presence on the island.


Security | Free IconSecurity  INSIGHT: Tunisia’s small Jewish community is still recovering from a suicide bombing claimed by Al-Qaeda at the synagogue in 2002 that killed 21 people. Before that, some 8,000 pilgrims used to travel to Djerba for the annual celebration.

Globe Planet Travel Plane Svg Png Icon F #1505326 - PNG Images - PNGioTravel:  At the time of this writing both the U.S. and UK embassies advises against all but essential international travel.


Operating in Tunisia?

Find out how you can have access to reliable security information & support.


 

VIDEO UPDATE: Tunisia travel…Pre-Flight COVID-19 tests

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VIDEO UPDATE


Update Icon of Colored Outline style - Available in SVG, PNG, EPS ...Travel UPDATE:

Ahead of boarding their Emirates flight from Dubai to Tunisia on April 15th, masked passengers were given blood tests for Covid-19, with results delivered within 10 minutes. Emirates, which claims to be the first airline to perform these tests.

Data Insight Svg Png Icon Free Download (#532568) - OnlineWebFonts.COMKey INSIGHT: Other airlines are considering different approaches: Earlier this month, Etihad, also based in the United Arab Emirates, announced that it was currently testing new kiosks in Abu Dhabi.

Security | Free IconSecurity INSIGHT:  The outbreak is hitting Tunisia’s tourism sector, which represents nearly 10% of gross domestic product (GDP) and is a key source of foreign currency, particularly hard.

Globe Planet Travel Plane Svg Png Icon F #1505326 - PNG Images - PNGioTravel Guidelines:  At the time of this writing both the U.S. and UK embassies advises against all but essential international travel.


Operating in Tunisia?

Find out how you can have access to reliable security information & support.


 

Tunisia extends COVID-19 LOCKDOWN to May 4th…

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Don't defy coronavirus lockdown rules, or this robot will call you ...
Read Full Article…

Update Icon of Colored Outline style - Available in SVG, PNG, EPS ...UPDATE: Tunisia extends coronavirus lockdown to May 4th

Source: Reuters April 19, 2020

Data Insight Svg Png Icon Free Download (#532568) - OnlineWebFonts.COMKey Article INSIGHT: The North African country has confirmed 866 cases of the coronavirus and 37 related deaths, and has imposed a lockdown since March. 20.

Security | Free IconSecurity INSIGHT:  The outbreak is hitting Tunisia’s tourism sector, which represents nearly 10% of gross domestic product (GDP) and is a key source of foreign currency, particularly hard.

Globe Planet Travel Plane Svg Png Icon F #1505326 - PNG Images - PNGioTravel:  At the time of this writing both the U.S. and UK embassies advises against all but essential international travel.


Operating in Tunisia?

Find out how you can have access to reliable security information & support.


 

COVID-19 IMPACT: Major Damage to Tunisian Economy

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Article Analysis:

Coronavirus may cause 400,000 travel-related job losses in Tunisia”-Published date: 15 April 2020 

Tunisia forecasts $1.4bn-loss in revenue in tourism sector over Coronavirus pandemic

3-Quick Key INSIGHTS:

  • Estimates project Tunisian economy will lose $1.4bn tourism revenue.

  • Tunisia has recorded a total of 747 cases of the virus and 34.

  • To mitigate the economic effects of the pandemic, Tunisia is seeking to secure a loan up to $877m (Source:  North African Post)

  • Visit Tunisia Security Update Facebook Page for more UPDATES.


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What’s going ON?

The coronavirus pandemic has devastated Tunisia’s tourism industry, with the vital sector expected to see 400,000 people lose their jobs this year and $1.4bn in lost revenue.

Like many countries across the globe, Tunisia has been under lockdown for weeks, with most residents only leaving their homes for exercise, grocery shopping and pharmacy runs.

 

Economic Challenges Ahead…

But as the second-biggest contributor to the country’s economy after agriculture, the tourism industry has almost completely shut down. Restaurants have closed, as have hotels and land borders, and international flights have been banned.

Tourist arrivals fell from over 7 million in 2010 to 5 million by 2015. But the number of visitors rose to 8.3 million in 2018, a 17 percent increase from 2017

Tourist arrivals fell from over 7 million in 2010 to 5 million by 2015. But the number of visitors rose to 8.3 million in 2018, a 17 percent increase from 2017

Now, under the pandemic, that number is expected to plummet.

Tunisia has recorded a total of 747 cases of the virus and 34 coronavirus-related deaths. So far, 43 people have recovered from the infection.

Tunisia’s number of cases falls well below neighbouring Algeria, which has reported 2,160 cases and 336 deaths, highlighting the need to ban tourism in order to slow the spread, as tourists from Algeria, Russia and the EU make up a large portion of the country’s yearly visitors.

Security Bottom Line

In a report released on Wednesday, the IMF said in general, economies across the Middle East and North Africa are expected to shrink by 3.3 percent during 2020.

The COVID-19 pandemic could not have come at a worse time for Tunisia.  Having just completed a complicated election cycle, the country was looking forward to a much needed successful tourism season.

At the time of this writing both the U.S. and UK embassies advises against all but essential international travel.


Security Support

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Tunisia sets presidential election for September 15

Originally scheduled for November, the vote was brought forward following President Beji Caid Essebsi’s death. “-Source: Aljazeera

Key Points

  • The Campaigning period will be from September 2 to 13
  • The presidential race was originally scheduled for November, but the vote was brought forward following Essebsi’s death on July 25
The presidential race was originally scheduled for November, but the vote was brought forward following Essebsi’s death on July 25

Tunisia Election is SET!

Tunisia‘s presidential election will be held on September 15, the North African country’s electoral body has announced, rejecting calls to postpone the vote after the death of ailing leader Beji Caid Essebsi.

The campaigning period will be from September 2 to 13, and the results of the vote will be announced two days after the polls, he said.

Tunisia Remains a Target

Tunisia remains a fragile democracy in a region surrounded by challenges. The elections are critical for Tunisians in consolidating their democratic process.

As an estimated 6.7 million Tunisian voters prepare to head to the polls to elect their next government later this year, a growing fear of terrorist attacks could risk undermining the democratic process in the North African country, some analysts warn.

Recent example:  Two suicide attackers blew themselves up in two separate bombings against police in the capital Tunis on June 27, leaving at least one police officer dead and injuring eight people. A third bombing occurred on July 2 after a militant surrounded by police blew himself up.


@DavidSecurity shares information on the Security Situation in Tunisia for the purposes of empowering companies operating in Tunisia as well as expats & travelers.