South Korea Announces Ease of Pandemic Restrictions and Increase in Flights to US and Europe

The South Korean government has announced that the number of international flights will be increased weekly and that international flights will resume at regional airports in May.

In a report by the country’s state news, Minister of the Interior and Safety Jeon Hae-cheol, who is also the second assistant director of the Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasures Headquarters, said the decision was based on the expected increase in demand for overseas travel as many countries eased quarantine policies following the omicron wave’s peak.

“From next month, the weekly number of international flights will be raised by 100 for the Americas, Europe, Thailand, and Singapore, where quarantine exemptions and visa-free entry are available, and international flight service will be expanded to regional airports,” Minister Jeon said.

The Ministry of the Interior and Safety has identified three steps to the plan for resuming international aviation operations.

The first is to add 100 foreign weekly flights in April, May, and June, for a total of 420 flights per week in April, 520 in May, and 620 in June.

The second step begins in July when 300 weekly flights are added each month during the endemic phase.

The third phase will see all flying services return to pre-pandemic levels once the coronavirus has become endemic.

International flights are currently available at only two regional airports: Busan’s Gimhae International Airport and Daegu’s Daegu International Airport.

However, air hubs in Muan-gun County, Jeollanam-do Province; Cheongju, Chungcheongbuk-do Province; and Jeju Island will reopen next month, followed by those in Gimpo, Gyeonggi-do Province, and Yangyang-gun County, Gangwon-do Province.

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