Travellers arriving in Hong Kong on Monday were heading straight to their homes or hotels, instead of a designated quarantine hotel, as a new "0+3" arrangement takes effect.
The new measure only requires new arrivals to undergo three days of “medical surveillance” in which they will be banned from venues that actively check the vaccine pass.
The first travellers who touched down at the airport on Monday morning were mostly residents returning home or to work, or coming to Hong Kong to visit their families.
Some of them told RTHK that it only took them around 30 minutes to complete the clearance process, saying the government’s move to drop a requirement for them to wait for their PCR test result upon arrival has saved a lot of time.
A woman who flew in from Singapore, who gave her name as Victoria, also welcomed the administration’s decision to scrap the need for a PCR test before departure, saying the new rapid test requirement is “way more convenient”.
Travellers heading out for a vacation, meanwhile, were also thrilled that they could cancel their quarantine hotel bookings.
"Our expense for our trip is less than before because the fee of the [quarantine] hotel is too expensive, I remember it was around HK$7,000 for both of us," said Robin, who was flying to Thailand with his friend.
Nevertheless, many travellers said they hope to see all travel restrictions cancelled as soon as possible.