Health Protection Agency HPA has announced two PCR testing options for those traveling to the islands from the Greater Male' Area in the next two amid stricter travel rules due to the rise in COVID cases in the capital city.

Earlier HPA had said that since the COVID positivity rate in the Male' Area has risen above 10 percent, it is now mandatory for those traveling from the capital to submit a negative COVID PCR test when they reach their destination.

The Agency's announcement had caused travelers to rush to the sample collection centers in the Male' Area as the rules go into effect starting tomorrow.

Since then, HPA had announced that it would allow two PCR testing options for those traveling from the Greater Male' Area in the next two days.

HPA said that the two options are;

  1. Take a sample and travel, stay in quarantine till you get your result.
  2. Travel to the island, stay in quarantine till the test is done and results are made available.

The Agency had said under the new travel rules, individuals who have completed two doses of the COVID vaccine must submit a negative PCR result prior to traveling from the Greater Male' Area and that the test must not be older than 72-hours.

It further said that those who have not completed their vaccine doses must complete a mandatory 14-day quarantine after traveling from the capital and can only be released from the quarantine after presenting a negative PCR test.

HPA said that children who are ineligible for the COVID vaccine would be exempted from the quarantine rule.

The Agency urged travelers to use the 'COVID Safe' portal to present the negative PCR result and the 'Haalubelunn' portal to make quarantine arrangements.