Expensive Rapid PCR Test on Airports!

 Omicron, a new variant of SARS-CoV-2, has caught the attention of the government as the World Health Organisation (WHO) has termed it as a variant of concern. The cases of it are increasing in India so all major airports in the country are bringing about changes to their travel guidelines. The Chennai airport for example now has a mandatory Rapid PCR test costing a whopping INR 3400 per passenger but the long waiting hours and high cost is bothering travelers.

The Indira Gandhi International Airport has announced that the cost of Rapid PCR test is being reduced to 3500 INR from 3900 INR for the benefit of passengers. This is set to benefit international travellers who are supposed to undergo mandatory testing upon arrival in the country. On the other hand, the cost of the regular RT-PCR test is to remain at INR 500, and its report takes about 4-6 hours while the Rapid PCR test results takes only 90 minutes.

At Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport, there are 100 registration counters and 60 sampling booths with 100 Rapid PCR machines. The cost of Rapid PCR test here has been revised to INR 3900 from the previous rate of INR 4500. The regular PCR testing here will be available at INR 600.

According to the latest rules, passengers coming in from United Kingdom, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Botswana, China, Brazil, New Zealand, Mauritius, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Israel have to undergo mandatory RT-PCR test upon arrival. They are also required to wait for their test results before leaving the airport or even before taking a connecting flight.