Here's all you need to know about visas and COVID entry restrictions.
In the last couple of months Central Asia has begun to open their doors to the outside world, aggressively removing covid restrictions and reintroducing liberalised visa regimes. This is great news for travelling around the region.
Kazakhstan as of early June removed all COVID restrictions meaning you can enter via air, land or ship without the need for a PCR test or a vaccine certificate, so anyone can travel to Kazakhstan now from a COVID point of view.
Kazakhstan has also returned to their pre-COVID visa programme which allows visa free access to 74 countries. Not only is it as easy as ever to travel to Kazakhstan but they’ve just announced in the last few days that they will expand the visa free list of nations to more than 100!
You can read the current visa restrictions
and this will be updated as soon as the expanded visa free programme is implemented.
Kyrgyzstan was the outlier during COVID in that they continued to accept tourists as before, so long as they were either vaccinated or presented a negative PCR test. This has been scrapped now, so even unvaccinated tourists can travel to Kyrgyzstan and there is no need to complete a PCR test. The list of visa restrictions still remains the most liberal in Central Asia and can be found here .
The land border with Tajikistan remains closed but this is due to the current tensions between the two countries and is not COVID related.
Uzbekistan has now removed all COVID related entry requirements meaning you do not need to present a vaccine certificate or negative PCR test. Pre-COVID visa requirements are now in force, meaning many nationalities can enter visa free, while most others can easily obtain an e-visa. You can find out all of Uzbekistan’s visa requirements here .
Turkmenistan still remains closed to essentially all foreigners except high profile delegations. Flights are still banned from landing in Ashgabat and instead are landing in Turkmenabat in the north of the country where all entrants need to complete two weeks in quarantine.
As stated before, the Turkmenistan government doesn’t intend to allow foreigners until at least 2023. Read more about this here . They are now however allowing Turkmenistani citizens to return from abroad and have resumed flights for returning citizens from several locations. There really isn’t any information as to what entry requirements will look like once Turkmenistan does reopen, whether they’ll require vaccine certificates, PCR tests, quarantine, or a combination.
As soon as Turkmenistan opens, we’ll be the first to take tours there! In the meantime if you'd like to find out about traveling to Turkmenistan, have a look at our destination guide here .
Tajikistan still requires either proof of vaccine or a negative PCR test in order to enter the country. As of this year nationals from 52 countries became visa free while almost every other country in the world can easily obtain a Tajik e-visa which is relatively straight forward, quick and inexpensive. You can find out more information about it here .
The land border with Kyrgyzstan remains closed but this is due to the current tensions between the two countries and is not COVID related.