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While South Africa's borders are now officially open again, there are still several strict restrictions when it comes to who will be allowed into South Africa, and who not.

During a media briefing on Wednesday, Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Naledi Pandor, said not all borders and ports of entry will be opened at first.

"The gradual reopening of borders and ports of entry, informed by a cautious approach, means that a limited number of ports of entry and borders will be opened from 1 October 2020."

For international air travel, only three airports will be opened and operational. They are OR Tambo International, Cape Town International and King Shaka International.

As with all other legal elements regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, government is guided by the National Coronavirus Command Council, who in turn make decisions according to recommendations made by the World Health Organisation.

Before being allowed to enter the country, travellers will be required to prove that they have had a COVID-19 test during the last 72 hours and the results are negative.

The Minister emphasised that if a traveller displays any symptoms, they will be requested to do another test at their own expense. Should the test result be positive, they will be required to quarantine for 10 days at a venue identified by government. The quarantine will be at the traveller's expense.

Leisure travellers from high-risk countries will not be allowed entry into the country. Entry will only be allowed if the reason for their visit is business.

High-risk countries include the United Kingdom, the United States, France, Ireland, Portugal, Russia, Israel, India and Qatar.

During the media briefing, Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi confirmed that the Department of Home Affairs was extending the validity of visas that expired during lockdown until 31 January 2021.

These guidelines will be examined every two weeks.

Watch the SABC News video below for more info on the guidelines regarding the opening of South Africa’s borders for international travel.

Image credit: The South African

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