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Minister of Tourism to Airlines: Get Ready

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Phnom Penh: The Minister of Tourism has advised Sky Angkor Airlines to get ready for the reopening of passenger flights “very soon”. It’s a ray of hope for the tourism sector, which is waiting anxiously to welcome back fully vaccinated tourists to the Kingdom in the near future.

Minister of Tourism, Thong Khon, met with the airline on Monday. The meeting came three days after Prime Minister Hun Sen said the country will soon announce details of its plan to welcome back fully vaccinated travelers, with just seven days quarantine in and around their port of arrival – not in a hotel room.

EAC News spoke to the President of the Cambodian Association of Travel Agents, Chhay Sivlin, to see how the sector and its airlines have been responding to the upcoming reopening:

“It’s great news, yeah. To be hearing about the high possibility in the reopening our local airlines being Cambodian Angkor air, as it will be a concrete first plan to reopen tourism in Cambodia and it has been far too long for the closure of our local aviation industry to the pandemic.”

She believes that the 7-day quarantine is great news, but that government should consider even shorter quarantine periods for certain countries:

“It’s indeed an exciting opportunity for tourism businesses, seeing the government is considering reducing quarantine time for new travelers from 2 weeks to just one. However, would be even better for the authorities to consider limiting some considerably safe countries to just three days of quarantine. For smooth operation and convenience for quarantine tourists, there is the possibility authorities will be assisting them to visit determined tourists’ sites set by the government. Regarding the selected areas for quarantine, there is a possibility of first reopen the south coast, such as Sihanoukville and selected islands for quarantine destination.”

There’s also promising news for foreign residents of Cambodia. The CATA president believes the $2,000 dollar deposit will be lifted once quarantine gets shortened.

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