Home Quarantine for Inbound Travellers - Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What are the current health quarantine arrangements for inbound travellers?
  2. What is the quarantine period?
  3. How to define the period of relevant travel history?
  4. What would then happen after one has declared relevant travel history to an affected area?
  5. What if a person misreports his travel history for the past 14 days?
  6. Why are some travellers sent to quarantine centres and some allowed quarantine at home or other accommodation?
  7. What are the conditions for quarantine at home or other accommodation?
  8. Are travellers from overseas allowed to stay in hotel for quarantine?
  9. Can the person be allowed to leave briefly to attend to matters?
  10. How to report breaches of quarantine orders?
  11. Is there any special arrangement for garbage collection for confinees?
  12. What is the emergency hotline in case I have to attend a doctor?
  13. Are visitors allowed to enter a place undergoing home quarantine?
  14. Are household members allowed to stay in the same premises?
  15. Should I wear a mask when there is a home confinee in my household?
  16. What are the special precautions for the home confinees?
  17. Should a household member share meals, kitchen and toilet with a home confinee?
  18. How does the Government know and manage the person who has fallen ill?
  19. If I transit via Hong Kong without entering Hong Kong, would quarantine measures applied to me?
  20. If I transit and land in Hong Kong for 3 days, would I be subject to quarantine?
  21. Would I be allowed to leave Hong Kong earlier so that I can return to my home country?
  22. Are crew members exempted?
  23. What is the health advice for travellers before they come to Hong Kong?
  24. Why should we have these health quarantine arrangements?
  25. Where can I obtain more information?

  1. What are the current health quarantine arrangements for inbound travellers?
    All people entering Hong Kong from the Mainland will be required to undergo compulsory quarantine upon their arrival.

    Health quarantine arrangements on inbound travellers from overseas:
    1. Hong Kong residents arriving in Hong Kong who have been to the following countries or areas in the past 14 days will have to stay in a quarantine centre for quarantine
      1. Daegu and Gyeongsangbuk-do in Korea
      2. Iran
      3. Emilia-Romagna, Lombardy and Veneto regions in Italy
    2. Hong Kong residents arriving in Hong Kong who have been to any other overseas countries or areas in the past 14 days will be subject to compulsory quarantine

    With effect from 0.00am on March 25, 2020, tentatively for 14 days:
    1. All non-Hong Kong residents coming from overseas countries and regions by plane will be denied entry to Hong Kong
    2. Non-Hong Kong residents coming from the Mainland, Macao and Taiwan will be denied entry to Hong Kong if they have been to any overseas countries and regions in the past 14 days
    3. All travellers coming from Macao and Taiwan, including Hong Kong and non-Hong Kong residents, will be subject to compulsory quarantine, which is the same as the arrangements for people entering Hong Kong from the Mainland

  2. What is the quarantine period?
    The quarantine period lasts for 14 days. The date of arrival in Hong Kong is Day 1 and the quarantine period will last from Day 1 to Day 14.

  3. How to define the period of relevant travel history?
    The travel history counted from the arrival day (Day 0), back counting for 14 days.
    Example:
    Arrival date on 19 March 2020 (Day 0), travel history refers to the period of previous 14 days from 18 March 2020 (Day -1) to 5 March 2020 (Day -14).

  4. What would then happen after one has declared relevant travel history to an affected area?
    Depending on the situation of the inbound travellers, they will receive different quarantine arrangements as instructed by the Government officials. Those who receive quarantine at home or other accommodation have to provide their address in Hong Kong as well as the contact phone number. They will then be required to put on the electronic wristband provided by the Government. After entering Hong Kong, the person concerned must be quarantined at the provided address for 14 days.

  5. What if a person misreports his travel history for the past 14 days?
    According to Prevention and Control of Disease (Disclosure of Information) Regulation (Cap 599D), it would be a criminal offence for any person to provide false or misleading information (including travel history) to the health officer or medical practitioners concerned.

  6. Why are some travellers sent to quarantine centres and some allowed quarantine at home or other accommodation?
    From an infection control perspective, quarantine centres which are manned by medical staff tend to be more effective in controlling people movements and monitoring health risks. However, capacity is a constraint. We adopt a risk-based approach to decide which groups merit a stay in the centres.

  7. What are the conditions for quarantine at home or other accommodation?
    Apart from meeting conditions as described in question 1 above, these travellers must have passed temperature checks when they arrived in Hong Kong and do not have any symptoms.
    Those who receive quarantine at home or other accommodation have to provide their address as well as the contact phone number.
    Persons under quarantine are prohibited from leaving Hong Kong, and have to stay at the premises at all times. They should also maintain good personal and environmental hygiene. The household is strongly advised to adhere to good personal hygiene, masking and social distancing during the quarantine period.
    Persons under quarantine have to check their body temperature twice daily and record their health condition for monitoring of personal health. If they have fever or develop other symptoms, they have to inform the Centre for Health Protection via a dedicated hotline which operates 24 hours a day. After assessment, they will be sent to hospitals for treatment when necessary.

  8. Are travellers from overseas allowed to stay in hotel for quarantine?
    The quarantine premises are mainly residential homes though hotels can be an option. Travellers need to show proof of hotel booking record.

  9. Can the person be allowed to leave briefly to attend to matters?
    No. The Government has to emphasise that self-discipline and community solidarity in fighting against the disease are of utmost importance. Any person concerned who leaves the dwelling place without permission may commit a criminal offence. The penalty upon conviction is imprisonment and a fine.
    The Government will ensure the persons under compulsory quarantine stay at the premises by spot checks, telephone calls and via monitoring of the status of electronic device, etc.

  10. How to report breaches of quarantine orders?
    The Government appeals to the public to make use of the "e-Report Centre" online platform to report suspected cases of breaching quarantine orders. Members of the public may also report suspected breaches of quarantine orders through report rooms of police stations or call 1823.
    The Government strongly appeals to the public to follow the quarantine requirement strictly in order to protect the health of their own selves and others. The measure is of utmost importance to prevent the spreading of COVID-19 in the community. Leaving dwelling places without permission is a criminal offence and offenders are subject to a maximum imprisonment of six months and a fine of $25,000.

  11. Is there any special arrangement for garbage collection for confinees?
    In case no family members or friends could help to dispose waste, wrap your waste properly for door-to-door collection by Government staff. Food and Environmental Hygiene Department and Housing Department will help to collect garbage as necessary.

  12. What is the emergency hotline in case I have to attend a doctor?
    Please call the designated hotline which operates 24 hours a day provided by the Department of Health. For emergency situation, please call 999.

  13. Are visitors allowed to enter a place undergoing home quarantine?
    Friends or relatives not living together should not enter the place so as to reduce the risk of being exposed to infection.

  14. Are household members allowed to stay in the same premises?
    Yes. Nevertheless, we strongly advise that the household members adhere to good personal hygiene, masking and social distancing during the quarantine period.

  15. Should I wear a mask when there is a home confinee in my household?
    Please refer to the above question.

  16. What are the special precautions for the home confinees?
    Confinees must stay at the premises at all times. They should also maintain good personal and environmental hygiene at all times. If living with other people, both confinee and his/her household members should wear surgical mask throughout the quarantine period.

    Maintain social distancing
    • Stay in a well-ventilated single room if possible
    • Keep a distance from others as much as possible (at least 1 metre)

    Personal hygiene
    • Do not share towels or personal items, and separately placed from those of other family members
    • Perform hand hygiene frequently and observe cough etiquette

    Environmental hygiene
    • Clean and disinfect the home environment daily with 1 in 99 diluted household bleach (mixing 10 ml of bleach containing 5.25% sodium hypochlorite with 990 ml of water), leave for 15-30 minutes and then rinse with water. For metallic surface, disinfect with 70% alcohol
    • After using the toilet, put the toilet lid down before flushing, and pour about half a litre of water into each drain outlet (U-traps) regularly
    • Designate a toilet to be used only by the confinee as far as possible. If the toilet is shared use with other members of the household, need to clean and disinfect the toilet after each use by the confinee with 1 in 49 diluted household bleach. Clean and disinfect the washing basin with 1 in 49 diluted household bleach if contaminated with sputum or saliva of the confinee e.g. after rinsing mouth or brushing teeth
    • Do not touch commonly shared items with family members such as TV control panel, radio control panel, door handles, unless you disinfect your hand with alcohol-based handrub first

    Lifestyle
    • Avoid meal gatherings and do not share food or drinks
    • Eat in your own room; if not possible, eat by facing a wall
    • There is no need to do separate laundry
    • Do not smoke and avoid alcohol consumption
    • If developing fever and acute respiratory symptoms or feeling unwell, make sure the mask is worn properly, call the hotline of the Department of Health immediately for advice and arrangement to public hospital for further management

  17. Should a household member share meals, kitchen and toilet with a home confinee?
    The household member should maintain good personal and environmental hygiene at all times. Both confinee and his/her household members should wear surgical mask throughout the quarantine period.

    Maintain social distancing
    • Wear a mask and maintain appropriate social distance with confinee (at least 1 metre)

    Personal hygiene
    • Do not share personal items (e.g. tooth brush)
    • Maintain good person hygiene especially hand hygiene

    Environmental hygiene
    • Ensure that shared spaces are well ventilated by keeping windows open
    • Frequent cleansing and disinfection (including kitchen and toilet)

    Lifestyle
    • Avoid going to crowded places, wear a surgical mask when taking public transport or staying in crowded places
    • Stagger meal
    • Do not share meals with confinee
    • Do not smoke and avoid alcohol consumption
    • Build up good body resistance and maintain healthy lifestyle. This can be achieved through balanced diet, regular exercise and adequate rest
    • Monitor health condition. If a household member develops fever or respiratory symptoms, he or she should put on a surgical mask and seek medical attention immediately

  18. How does the Government know and manage the person who has fallen ill?
    Persons under quarantine have to check their body temperature twice daily and record their health condition for monitoring of personal health. If they have fever or develop other symptoms, they have to inform the Centre for Health Protection via a dedicated hotline which operates 24 hours a day. After assessment, they will be sent to hospitals for treatment when necessary.

  19. If I transit via Hong Kong without entering Hong Kong, would home quarantine measures applied to me?
    Quarantine measures are only applicable to persons who enter Hong Kong.

  20. If I transit and land in Hong Kong for 3 days, would I be subject to quarantine?
    The quarantine requirement does not apply to transit passenger who arrives at the Hong Kong International Airport or enters the waters of Hong Kong solely for the purpose of leaving Hong Kong and, while in Hong Kong, does not pass through immigration control.

  21. Would I be allowed to leave Hong Kong earlier so that I can return to my home country?
    No. The Government has to emphasise that self-discipline and community solidarity in fighting against the disease are of utmost importance. Any person concerned who leaves the dwelling place without permission may commit a criminal offence. The penalty upon conviction is imprisonment and a fine.
    The Government will ensure the persons under compulsory quarantine stay at the premises by spot checks, telephone calls and via monitoring of the status of electronic device, etc.

  22. Are crew members exempted?
    The following categories of persons can be exempted from the quarantine requirement:
    1. crew members of aircrafts who need to commute to and from foreign places for performance of necessary duties;
    2. crew members of goods vessels;
    3. government officials carrying out governmental duties;
    4. Public officers at or above the level of Executive Directors (or equivalent) in the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, the Securities and Futures Commission and the Insurance Authority undertaking international obligations and/or participating in international co-operation pursuant to their regulatory functions;
    5. construction personnel tasked to carry out off-site duties in foreign places that are essential and cannot be replaced by other means to ensure the quality, integrity and statutory compliance of services or components to be used in government projects;
    6. experts, personnel of the academic sectors or of international authorities who are engaged in research and/or provide advice in combating the COVID-19 infection to the HKSAR Government;
    7. staff and personnel of public bodies and their partners for the supply of wristbands and related materials for home quarantine; and
    8. personnel of public bodies and their partners, agencies, companies or organisations for the supply to Hong Kong of personal protective equipment (PPE) or materials/equipment for the production of PPEs.

    The Department of Health (DH) will arrange medical surveillance for persons under the above exempted categories of persons during their stay in Hong Kong. Persons under medical surveillance are required to wear masks and check temperature twice daily for reporting to the DH. In addition, exempted persons are also subject to the temperature check and health declaration procedures carried out by the DH at various boundary control points during arrival and departure clearance.
    Contravening the quarantine requirement would be a criminal offence. Offenders are subject to a maximum fine of $25,000 and imprisonment for six months.

  23. What is the health advice for travellers before they come to Hong Kong?
    If feeling unwell, especially if experiencing a fever or cough, wear a surgical mask, inform the hotel staff or tour escort (if applicable) and seek medical advice at once. Do not travel.

    To maintain at all times strict personal hygiene is key to protection:
    • Wear a surgical mask when taking public transport or staying in crowded places. It is important to wear a mask properly, including hand hygiene before wearing and after removing a mask
    • Perform hand hygiene frequently; especially before touching mouth, nose and eyes
    • Cover your mouth and nose with tissue paper when sneezing or coughing. Dispose of the soiled tissues into a lidded rubbish bin, and then wash hands thoroughly
    • Wash hands with liquid soap and water, and rub for at least 20 seconds. Then rinse with water and dry with a disposable paper towel. If hand washing facilities are not available, or when hands are not visibly soiled, performing hand hygiene with 70-80% alcohol-based handrub is an effective alternative

    Travellers are also advised of the following preventive measures:
    • Avoid close contact with persons with fever or respiratory symptoms. If it is unavoidable to come into contact with them, put on a surgical mask
    • Avoid visiting hospitals. If it is necessary to visit a hospital, put on a surgical mask and observe strict personal and hand hygiene
    • Avoid touching animals (including game), poultry/birds or their droppings
    • Avoid visiting wet markets, live poultry markets or farms
    • Avoid making close contact with patients, especially those with symptoms of acute respiratory infections
    • Do not consume game meat and do not patronise food premises where game meat is served.
    • Adhere to food safety and hygiene rules
    • Go out less and reduce social activities such as meals gatherings or other gatherings, and maintain appropriate social distance with other people as far as possible

  24. Why should we have these health quarantine arrangements?
    The Government has been closely monitoring the situation around the world. The global situation is rapidly evolving with a continuous surge in the number of affected countries and confirmed cases. The Government has been reviewing and will continue to adjust in a timely manner the health quarantine measures in view of the latest developments and risk in different countries.

  25. Where can I obtain more information?
    Please visit the COVID-19 thematic website, designated page on inbound travel and the Facebook fan page of the Centre for Health Protection regularly for further information and updates.