Omicron: Reduced waiting time, more facilities for int'l passengers at Chennai airport

Waiting time for passengers for the Omicron test results at the Chennai Airport has been reduced and additional facilities have been made available to them.
Omicron: Reduced waiting time, more facilities for int'l passengers at Chennai airport
Passengers coming out of Internation Terminal at Chennai Airport


As the Omicron variant is spreading rapidly across several countries, passengers from high risk countries are subjected screening and testing at the Chennai airport.
Passengers taking the RT-PCR tests need to wait for atleast 6 to 7 hours, while passengers taking rapid test will have to wait up to an hour. The tedious process caused great inconvenience among the passengers. 
Accordingly, arrangements have been made by AAI to receive the results within 5 to 6 hours for passengers taking the RT-PCR test, within 30 to 45 minutes for passengers taking the rapid test and within 20 minutes for transist passengers taking alternative domestic flights.
In a statement issued by Corporate Communications Department, AAI, Chennai Airport "In compliance with the revised travel guidelines issued by Government of India and Government of Tamil Nadu on reportage of a new covid variant of concern (Omicron). airport authorities have made elaborate arrangements for screening passengers arriving from specified countries 'at-risk'.
An exclusive corridor has been created at T4 terminal to screen arriving passenges from countries at-risk. The facility can accomodate 500 passengers at a time as it is mandatory for passengers to wait till the Covid test results are out. 
Facility for registration for RT-PCR and rapid PCR, sample collection and payment are provided at the same level. This is in addition to pre-booking and pre-pay facility extended to arrival passengers online to save time during screening process. Exclusive space is earmarked for each facility/counters to ensure smooth movement inside the facility is also available. The rapid-PCR (Rs.3400/-) gives out results within 30-45 minutes from the time of collection of sample, while RT-PCR (Rs.700) takes 5-6 hrs for providing results. 
A host of passenger conveniences are also arranged at T4 terminal which includes reclining chairs, F&B outlets, baby feeding rooms and money exchange facility. Other amenities include entertainment screens, free Wi-Fi, free telephone and beverage vending machines. Information displays with latest guidelines are in place to sensitive arriving passengers. All the arrangements in the facility are in cognizance with the Covid protocols in place. 
"Facility for collection of random sample (2%) from travellers coming from countries excluding those enlisted as countries at-risk are also arranged at T3 arrival in coordiantion with TN Health Department. The test is done for free by State Health Department and the process in smooth and quick. Now, into the fifth day since the new guidelines are in place, it is heartening to know that passengers are satisfied with the arrangements made in quick time, in fact in less than 12 hours at T4 terminal," said an official.

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