Note: Travel during the restrictions imposed across various countries at this time mean that far more steps need to be taken in order to have a successful trip. In this case, do not use this post as a guide for travel at this or for any other destinations. The restrictions constantly change and it is up to you to know them yourself. This post also in no way encourages travel, do it at your own risk.
This is my second flight to Malta this year, the first being in mid-September and some things have certainly changed since then. The first one was the travel suspension for flights from the UK unless it’s a repatriation flight of Maltese citizens, residents, and any other pressing reason. The second was that a negative PCR test for SARS-CoV-2 must be presented before being able to enter the country. These rules are presented both by the airline (Air Malta) and the airport (Malta International Airport). There are also other requirements and Malta has had various other travel bans and the requirement that you have to be in what’s called a “safe corridor country” for 14 days before arriving, in which Germany was one of them.
Before you leave Germany…
Since I’ve already been aware of all the rules and potential issues, I was already prepared with the following:
- Having enough food in my apartment for the impending quarantine (10 days, or 5 days if you have a negative SARS-CoV-2 PCR result).
- Making sure the apartment is actually clean (nothing worse than coming back with a surprise that you forgot to throw away rotting bread).
- A printed copy of my Anmeldung with me (the German residence registration certificate). The rules have changed or will change that you’ll need to show proof that you actually live in Germany if you are not a German citizen. I bring it with me in case that I lose my residence card, for example.
- An up to date passport with more than 6 months validity.
- Enough cash and a couple of cards, in case one is lost.
- A packet of spare surgical masks (ie 10), hand sanitizer, sanitizing wipes.
- A couple of pens (extremely important with all the forms to be filled in…including surprise paperwork…
The airline (Air Malta) had passengers to fill out two forms – one is a printed, signed statement that you’re not sick and that you are not “actively positive”, not in contact with an active case, etc. This form is handed to the departure staff. It seems like even now a few passengers fail this part and they get taken to the side to fill in the paperwork. Mine was already filled in.
The other one is an electronic form, again attestation that you are in good health.
You will also need to be wearing a surgical mask, N95, FFP2 mask throughout the whole flight. In an earlier flight a couple of months back, cloth masks were used and even had people wearing bandanas that they later wear around the neck.
Another thing is to get a printed copy of the negative SARS-CoV-2 result. The airline staff don’t check this, instead it’s the Maltese airport upon arrival that checks for the test. Note: Actual rules may change, depending on the airline and destination.
I think the flight from Munich to Malta had about 20-30 people, each person taking up one row so it was very spacious. Airlines have filters for circulating air. Everyone is masked up, a dining cart service is provided still where you can buy coffee, tea, even beer or wine. You can also order a small meal. No cash is accepted, only cards.
We then start saying goodbye to Germany, meeting the Alps way above. It has actually been a long time since I last saw this scene, possibly on a flight to Italy mid 2018. I really enjoy peeking out and seeing which of the areas are villages.
The flight was pretty unremarkable. I took a laptop out to work, after wiping the desk with a sanitizing wipe.
Then we slowly made our way to Malta, being greeted and followed by this rainbow.
Arrival in Malta
On my first trip, we there was people in PPE collecting passenger locator forms before you can leave the airport, since at the time Germany was in a list of countries that did not require the negative PCR result. This time around the result is required and this was all done in an enclosed area of the departure lounge.
First they obtain a temperature check.
Then following that are two people with clipboards who’s task is to determine and check for paperwork. It seems that some passengers there had a rapid antigen test of some sort, which was no accepted. Without the test, you had to wait until all passengers left (that had the result) and then go to another area to do the test at the airport. In the testing area, your name and details are obtained and you provide your passenger locator form. No one leaves the area until you are let go by the staff who call out your name, then you are asked to immediately proceed out.