Several airlines have resumed services to Bujumbura after Burundi re-opened for international flights on November 8, 2020, having been closed for more than seven months to restrict the spread of COVID-19.

According to the ch-aviation schedules module, the first carrier to return was Uganda Airlines (UR, Entebbe), which resumed 3x weekly services from Entebbe starting on November 8. Kenya Airways (KQ, Nairobi Jomo Kenyatta) followed close behind with 3x weekly flights from Nairobi Jomo Kenyatta on November 9.

Brussels Airlines (SN, Brussels National) is scheduled to reinstate a weekly service from Brussels National on November 17. Ethiopian Airlines (ET, Addis Ababa International) resumed twice-weekly cargo flights from Addis Ababa International on November 10, and will resume daily passenger services from November 18. RwandAir (WB, Kigali) will be coming back with 4x weekly flights from Kigali on December 2.

According to an announcement made by Burundian government spokesperson Prosper Ntahorwamiye on national radio and television, strict health protocols are required. Arriving and departing passengers must present a negative PCR test done no later than 72-hours before embarkation. Passengers are being screened on arrival and are required to quarantine for 72-hours in selected hotels, having to bear all related costs for testing and lodging. Ntahorwamiye said the country’s land and sea border restrictions would be relaxed in phases, based on health protocols in place.

The Burundi Times reported the country’s borders were closed in March after the first case of COVID-19 was recorded. Only cargo, diplomatic and humanitarian flights were permitted to fly in and out of the country during the lockdown.