The Himalayan country Nepal has always been favoured by Bangladeshi tourists for the grand visuals it offers and its rich cultural heritage. Located way above the plains, the country's tourism industry remains a key driving force of its economy.
However, in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic, Bangladeshi tourists for a long time had been deprived of the opportunity to visit Nepal throughout the previous year.
In recent times, there has been a surge of travellers flying to the mountain nation from Bangladesh as the restrictions were relaxed by both governments.
How safe is Nepal against Covid threat?
As of 18 December, Nepal reported 158 new coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours taking the nationwide infection tally to 825,603. The countrywide death toll reached 11,572.
However, the number of active cases stood at just 5,428. The estimated infection rate in Nepal now hovers around 3%.
According to a 16 December report, so far, Nepal has reported two Omicron cases.
Compared to many Asian tourist destinations, Nepal, at the moment, is safer for tourists against Covid-19 threat.
Travel requirements and restrictions
Health workers deployed at Tribhuvan airport in Kathmandu check the PCR result issued within 72 hours or fully vaccination certificates of the travellers.
Nepal is open to both vaccinated and unvaccinated travellers. However, fully vaccinated individuals can bypass the RT-PCR testing rules.
Visitors should have received their last dose of the Covid-19 vaccine at least 14 full days prior to entering Nepal.
On 2 December, Nepal issued travel restrictions for people arriving from South Africa, Hong Kong, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Namibia, Lesotho, Eswatini, Malawi and Mozambique as the first port of embarkation or transit or with a travel history of such countries within three weeks.
Earlier this month, Nepal Civil Aviation Authority had passed a decision to enforce the Covid-19 insurance policy from 15 December.
The policy covers hotel quarantine costs up to 14 days and medical expenses up to $5,000 for all age groups of passengers if they are diagnosed with Covid-19 whilst travelling.
However, the plan was postponed after international airlines asked for extra time to make preparations.
On 23 September, Nepal struck out the seven-day quarantine requirement and resumed issuing on-arrival visas to all vaccinated foreign travellers in a bid to bring its virus-ravaged tourism industry back to life.
However, on 18 December, it made two weeks' quarantine mandatory for travellers arriving from 67 different countries, mainly from European and African countries, in wake of the rising Omicron variant of coronavirus.
"Passengers, travelling from the countries mentioned, are requested to stay in Hotel Quarantine for 7 days at their own expense. After staying seven days in Hotel Quarantine, in case of a negative test of Covid-19 by RT-PCR method, it is requested to stay in the home quarantine for additional 7 days and send the person with a positive result to the designated isolation centre or hospital," Nepal's Ministry of Home Affairs said in a statement.
The good news is Bangladesh was excluded from the list and passengers from Bangladesh can get on-arrival visas.