Malta’s airport has finally bounced back to life, but travellers are still being made to wait for hours in queues upon arrival.
One person who landed in Malta today told Lovin Malta that he had to wait two hours to pass through arrivals as four flights arrived soon after each other, meaning there were delays at the COVID-19 document verification stage.
Logistical issues meant that it was impossible for the travellers to observe social distancing.
Two days ago, a woman complained to Lovin Malta after her daughter spent an hour getting through arrival procedures.
“The number of people here is ridiculous,” she said. “There’s no social distancing, it’s a real COVID-19 transmission hub.”
Public health authorities, not airport authorities, are in charge of processing COVID-19 tests and vaccine certificates at the airport.
This week, Malta started recognising vaccine certificates issued by EU member states and the UK.
Following a day of confusion, the Maltese health authorities announced it had created a verifier app that allows them to verify the authenticity of UK digital certificates presented by tourists arriving in Malta.
In a statement today, the Malta International Airport welcomed the decision to recognise digital versions of UK and EU documents as “a step in the right direction, which is expected to contribute to an improved experience for arriving guests”.
“However, Malta International Airport still expects to see several passengers arriving in Malta with missing or paper-based documents, necessitating manual verification by public health representatives,” it said.
“In light of this, the airport would like to appeal to prospective travellers for their cooperation by presenting and submitting the required entry documents digitally whenever possible.”
Cover photos: Russell Sammut