No more covid test before gorilla trekking and visiting parks in Rwanda

For long it has been a requirement for one to undertake a covid test and present a negative result before the gorilla trekking in Rwanda and also before visiting any of the parks in Rwanda. The gorilla trek required a mandatory PCR test, the same for all primate activities in Rwanda such as chimpanzee trekking in Nyungwe forest, golden monkey trekking in Volcanoes National Park and monkey tracking in Nyungwe forest. If one was not doing any primate trekking/tracking, then just a rapid test would suffice before visiting any of the three parks (Volcanoes National Park, Nyungwe National Park and Akagera National Park) for a tour.

This mandatory covid-19 testing guideline in Rwanda is NO MORE after the government announcement on May 23 2023.

This comes as a huge relief for a number of reasons! First, the covid tests caused an extra cost to the traveler, with the PCR covid test costing 50$, and the rapid test costing 10$. The test had to be done and the result gotten within 72hours to the time of an activity, meaning if you were visiting several parks and doing different activities between several days you would have to do multiple tests. What was most unsettling for the most travelers though, was the thought of paying for the gorilla tour and traveling all the way to Rwanda only for the test to turn out positive. This was a major concern for many travelers who thought it was such an inconvenience and a big risk. Many travelers that planned to do the gorilla trekking instead opted for the gorilla trekking in Uganda which did not have these kinds of guidelines.

A timely decision and prayer answered…

With the tourism peak season knocking on the door (starts in June), this announcement is very timely and a prayer answered for many tour operators that struggled to communicate to their clients that they would need to undergo a covid test before the already booked tours.

Also, with the World Health Organization (WHO) declaring an end to covid-19 as a global health emergency, and there being virtually no new infections being reported in Rwanda, the government has taken the right decision at the right time.

Also important to note before traveling to Rwanda:

No covid testing for the fully vaccinated traveling to and from Rwanda

Fully vaccinated (at least two shots) persons who are traveling to Rwanda are not required to test for covid but should show proof of vacation which is a vaccination certificate. Those departing Rwanda are also not required to test unless if their destination requires it.

Visa on arrival possible for all travelers to Rwanda

Rwanda’s is an open-door policy that allows everyone travelling to the country to be able to get a visa on arrival. This makes it easy to visit even on the last minute.