The current inbound flight ban will be lifted at midnight on Friday, meaning that Hongkongers residing in the U.K and Ireland can return to the city.

Inbound travelers must provide a negative COVID-19 test result within 72 hours before arrival. They must also show a booking confirmation for a 21-night designated quarantine hotel room before boarding.

After arriving in Hong Kong, passengers also must undergo a COVID-19 test and obtain a negative result at the airport, before self-arranging another test on the 26th day after arrival.

Hong Kong had banned flights from the U.K. last December after a super-virulent strain of COVID-19 was identified in Britain.

Health authorities also announced that it would continue to ban all flights from India, Nepal, Pakistan and the Philippines to Hong Kong, and to prohibit those who have stayed in India, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, Brazil and South Africa from boarding and entering Hong Kong.