In light of the ongoing Class B infectious disease status of COVID-19 in China, passengers travelling to China must take a nucleic acid test within 48 hours of boarding and only those with negative results will be permitted to enter the country, according to the Chinese Government’s interim measures for cross-border travel issued on December 27, 2022.
To ensure the health and safety of international travel, airlines flying to China will be required to check passengers’ nucleic acid test certificates before boarding beginning Tuesday, January 17, 2023.
China Customs will also conduct random checks on the certificates upon the arrival of passengers.
To facilitate a smooth travel experience, the Chinese Embassy in India has updated its “Epidemic Prevention and Control Guidelines for China-bound Passengers” as well as the requirements for nucleic acid test certificates.
Updated Guidelines for China-bound Passengers
1. Nucleic Acid Test
The nucleic acid test should be taken within 48 hours before boarding and only those with negative results can travel to China. Please keep the negative test certificate with you for inspection.
2. Customs Declaration
Passengers are required to declare the negative test result to China Customs by filling out the Health Declaration Form either on the We chat mini-program of China Customs (scan the QR code below), or at the web page ( or via the China Customs APP.
3. Boarding Inspection
Airlines operating flights to China will require passengers to produce certificates of negative nucleic acid tests made within 48 hours before boarding. Passengers failed to do so will not be allowed to board.
4. On-Board Prevention Measures
Please keep wearing a facial mask during flight and ensure self-protection and reduce infection risks.
5. Entry Inspection
Passengers should go through the necessary customs procedures upon arrival with the customs health declaration code. The Customs will randomly check the certificates of the nucleic acid test. Passengers with normal health declarations showing no abnormalities against regular quarantine checks will be allowed to enter the border.
Passengers with abnormal health declaration codes or symptoms such as fever will be tested by the Customs. Passengers with positive test results will be issued a notification letter which will guide them to conduct home quarantine or receive medical treatments accordingly. If the test result is negative, Customs will proceed with routine quarantine in accordance with the usual practice.
6. Residential Area Epidemic Prevention
Once entering China, travellers should strictly follow the requirements of epidemic prevention and control measures by local authorities.
Required Elements of a Nucleic Acid Test Certificate
1. Name of the person examined (which should be the same as the name of the travel document used for the flight to China), preferably with the date of birth and travel document number.
2. Test Information: test time or report issuance time (at least one should be within 48 hours before boarding), test method (should be nucleic acid testing, please note that antigen detection is not accepted), test results (should be negative, results stated as “uncertain” or “grey zone” will not be accepted ), name of the testing agency and contact information.
3. Use the official language of the departure country or English, and checked by the airlines operating the flight to China.
4. The certificate should be in form of a paper document, digital certificate should be printed and carried.
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