All About Travelling To Uganda Amidst Lock-down


Finding up-to-date information is not an easy task. In a world where propaganda overrides unbiased reporting; authentic information can be so hard to find. For over a year, Covid-19 was like a myth in Uganda. Though people knew that it existed, they had not experienced the effect of the pandemic. To most of the Ugandans; the nationwide lockdown had been the pandemic, not the Covid-19 infections.

The story changed in May 2021 after the Covid-19 infections spiked. As the rest of the world saw India’s death toll spike; international isolation became inevitable leaving most of the flights to and from India canceled. Though the death toll due to Covid-19 has spiked in Uganda; the story is still too far from that of India.

Below are some of the Travel guidelines and restrictions in Uganda

Travel restrictions in Uganda can be categorized into two; international travel restrictions and domestic travel restrictions. The government has issued a number of travel restrictions since the inception of the pandemic some of which are still valid while others are already obsolete.

Uganda International Travel Restrictions

On 10th May 2021; the ministry of health in Uganda issued a press release clarifying international travel restrictions. Some people had assumed a total ban on international travel which is not true. For that reason; the ministry of health in Uganda came out with a clarification about international travel guidelines.

There are three categories of countries in international travel;

Category One Countries

For now, it is only India that has been classified in the category A countries. Below are the travel restrictions subject to any international flights to or from India;

  1. All commercial flights between Uganda and India have been suspended until further notice
  2. All Travellers from India have been suspended from accessing Uganda until further notice
  3. Anyone who has been to or through India in the last 14 days before their arrival to Uganda will not be allowed to enter Uganda

Below are the exemptions of flights from India

Cargo flights are permitted to fly to Uganda as long as the crew does not disembark

Technical stops are permitted as long as the travelers do not disembark

Aircraft in a state of emergency is allowed into Uganda too

Medical treatment returnees are also allowed to return to Uganda

Diplomatic flights approved by the appropriate authority

Medical evacuation

Humanitarian aid flights

Category Two Countries

Countries in category B include; South Sudan, Ethiopia, South Africa, Tanzania, Turkey, the United States of America (USA), the United Kingdom (UK), and the United Arab Emirates.

All travelers in this category are subjected to the PCR Covid-19 test at the entry points into Uganda. All testing bills will be covered by the traveler.

PS note: Travelers who are in this category will not be subjected to a PCR test as long as they are fully vaccinated.

Category Three Countries

All countries that are not in Category One or Category two countries fall in category three countries. These are not required to do any Covid-19 PCR test upon arrival.

Local Travel Restrictions

The Uganda tourism board issued a press release on 8th June 2021 following the presidential address that set in motion the second lockdown procedures in Uganda.  Below are the local guidelines for tourist;

  1. All tourist vehicles must be licensed by the Ministry of Works and Transport and attached to tourism companies registered and licensed by Uganda Tourism Board
  2. All tourists are encouraged to carry their detailed travel itineraries especially for inter-district travel routes
  3. All tourist guides accompanying tourists must carry their identification
  4. Tourists are encouraged to carry proof of payment for accommodation and tourist activity fees such as national park entrance fees and permits where applicable
  5. Covid-19 SOPs must be adhered to in tourist vehicles with attention to social distancing wearing of masks and sanitizing

Guidelines For Hiring A car for Self Drive Amidst Covid-19 Restrictions

In view of the above guidelines from the Uganda Tourism Board; every tourist should make sure that they are hiring a car from a registered tour operator since all private vehicles cannot execute interdistrict travels