Of course, we can’t wait to see Jordan re-open widely to international tourism. Despite COVID19, several European countries are in the process of resuming flights to & from the Hashemite kingdom! So what are the conditions to be able to travel to Jordan? And besides, what about the coronavirus situation there?
Let us therefore try to answer these 2 questions, and develop the two important parameters to determine when tourism can resume in Jordan: the COVID situation in the country of departure, and the situation that prevails in Jordan itself.
(updated July 22nd 2020)
An update on the COVID 19 situation
The situation is obviously very evolving, and we may have to modify this paragraph many times before the country reopens from France :-).
But anyway, as of July 22, 2020, here are the respective COVID statistics, found on Johns-Hopskins University official website, known as a worldewide reference:
Number of cases : 214 607
Number of deathes : 30 168 (462/ Mhab)
Number of cases : 1214
Number of deathes : 12 (1/ Mhab)
In summary, Jordan controls « its » pandemia quite well. It is also one of the very first countries to have closed its borders. As of March 10, 2020, it was already impossible to transit Jordan from and to neighboring countries: Egypt, Israel, the West Bank, Syria, Iraq.
Then, from March 16, flights to France, then to all other countries, were suspended.
And on March 20, total lockdwon was decreed. The authorities even decided to put in place a curfew, with which one should not fool around too much: the first day of the lock down, 400 people were arrested for having broken it . The penalty for such a crime? well, you can potentially take it for a year of prison. Of course, in practice, no such penalty was applied: Jordan is known for its inapplicable laws (which is not that bad, in the present situation 🙂 ) .
Anyway, in addition to confinement, the extensive curfew completely prohibited the slightest possibility of « going out », no matter why ( even basic shopping …), except during very specific slots. No car travel was allowed, at all. Whoever knows Amman and its hectic trafic jams would be delighted by this perspective, but there was no one to actually see it on its own eyes 🙂 .This, by the way, has favored small traders, the only ones authorized to be open, large surfaces remaining closed. The police even organized bread distributions by moving in contact with the inhabitants of Amman.
When lockdown started, there were only 84 confirmed COVID19 cases. 5,000 people, tourists, were then stranded in quarantine in hotels in Amman and the Dead Sea.
Certainly, lockdown in Jordan wasn’t easier to endure than in France: Jordanians are tactile, love hugs and group barbecues or picnics … And they LOVE to meet with their friends in a cafe to chat! In addition, let’s not forget that the month of Ramadan took place in full lockdown …. For Muslims, this period normally represents a moment of sharing, with the breaking of the fast in the evening. People usually mutually invite themselves to this « iftar » .
In summary, perhaps even more than in Europe, lockdown was therefore a huge and paintest for a country already not very folichon (a very french expression 🙂 ) on an economic perspective, and with a total absence of tourists during almost 4 months!
Jordan and its #Safetravels stamp
From June 6, lockdwon was almost complete for everyone in Jordan. Reopening of bars, restaurants, tourist sites, mosques, churches, hotels … And partial authorization of travel, with public transport at 50% of their maximum capacity. Today, most of the restrictions are lifted, and « domestic » tourism has resumed!
Everything is now ready to receive international travelers.
Please kindly note that during this time there, these lucky expats in Jordan can enjoy peacefully the splendors of Petra and Jerash, in complete solitude and perfect stillness!
For international tourism to pick up in Jordan, the first question that arises is the health situation in Jordan itself. So, is Jordan safe about the COVID risk?
Well, yeah !
And as a since July 5, the Jordan Tourism Board has obtained the WTTC #safetravels agreement.
This approved protocol is issued by the World Travel and Tourism Council. It concerns about thirty destinations in the world.
This is great news for travelers, as it garantees that appropriate health protocols will be applied ,when you set foot at the airport.
Things are therefore gradually falling into place. To be convinced, here is what travelers will expect when they transit through Queen Alia International Airport. Rather reassuring, isn’t it?
And please make sure you don’t miss the policeman with his automatic temperature detection integrated helmet ;-))
And above all, it seems well organized. With more than 15% of the GDP, tourism represents a major economic stake for Jordan. It is therefore vital for the country to avoid an epidemic peak!
...But Jordan actually chooses the countries from which tourists come !
« Last but not least », the question we all ask ourselves is: does Jordan accept travelers from my country?
To find out, let’s look closely at Jordanian government decisions. Indeed, since July 16, 2020, the Jordanian authorities have established a list of so-called « green » countries. The nationals of these countries will therefore be able shortly (hopefully within 15 days) to visit Jordan without quarantine. Those countries have to meet some specific criteria, showing that the coronavirus is under control in them (number of cases, number of tests …). The list is reguarly updated and has already been expanded sinc July 19th.
As of July 22, 2020, there are now 22 countries on this list: Austria; Canada; China; Cyprus; Denmark; Estonia; Georgia; Germany; Greenland; Iceland; Ireland; Italy; Latvia; Lithuania; Malaysia; Malta; New Zeeland; Norway; Switzerland; Taiwan; Thailand; Monaco.
Are you surprised by the names of some countries on this list ? Well, to be honest , we feel the same, hahaha! 🙂
Anyway, the Jordanian government has announced that this list will evolve every two weeks. We therefore expect some fresh news for the end of this month! 🙂
In concrete terms, each person who shows up for the flight must be able to prove a negative COVID certificate dated less than 72 hours. Don’t forget to take a PCR test, therefore! This is the standard procedure observed by most countries. Also, here’s a list of recommandations provided by the jordanian minister of transport:
All travellers will have to complete an online declaration 24 hours prior to departure at a cost of JD 40. Non-Jordanians must also be able to prove they have valid health insurance.
Passengers travelling from a red or orange status country must transit through a green status country for a 14-day period before travelling onwards to Jordan.
Anyone caught attempting to enter the country without completing 14 days in a green status country or providing invalid test results will face a JD 10,000 fine.
Using the coronavirus safety applications Aman will be mandatory. Visitors must show proof of downloading before boarding the plane and when landing in Jordan.
Last but not least, QAIA airport is expected to open early August 2020 ! To be continued…
This article will be updated regularly. But if you want to get more information in real time, subscribe directly to our Facebook group « travel to Jordan: advice, preparation, feedback » (mostly in french, but we also take questions in english 🙂 ). This is where you will get the most recent news! 🙂