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Are there any countries that won't let foreigners leave the country or return home during pandemics? Governments might charter planes to bring their citizens back home, but are there countries that wouldn't allow that to happen?

6

Luzon island (where Manila is located) in Philippines decided to ban outbound international flights, but the decision was reversed a few days later:

https://www.rappler.com/business/254885-philippine-airlines-cebu-pacific-airasia-flight-cancelations-coronavirus-luzon-lockdown:

The airline will announce the status of its international flights from March 20 to April 12 at a later date, as it coordinates with authorities.

https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1096970:

The Department of Tourism (DOT) has lauded the lifting of the travel ban on outbound passengers, except Filipino tourists, in line with the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine.

Peru also has a lockdown: https://www.tennessean.com/in-depth/news/health/2020/03/20/americans-stranded-peru-coronavirus-lockdown/2873582001/

Some found out when a hotel clerk banged on their door late Sunday night to say they had 24 hours to get out of the country

List: https://www.theguardian.com/travel/2020/mar/20/coronavirus-travel-ban-advice-updates-uk-countries-restrictions-fco-warnings:

  • Albania and Slovenia: All flights suspended.
  • Jordan: No commercial flights in or out of Jordan, and all land and sea borders closed.
  • Luxembourg: All passenger flights suspended from 23 March.
  • Pakistan: All flights suspended until 4 April
  • Tajikistan: All flights suspended from 20 March
  • etc.

Other lists:

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  • ""Passenger flights suspended" does not mean you cannot leave overland. I seriously doubt that Slovenia or Luxemburg would not at least let citizens of neighbouring countries leave. – Jan yesterday
  • @Jan good point, I am guessing you're right. I think in the list, Philippines is the most likely to have truly prevented anyone from leaving and even though I'm assuming one could have left by boat with enough motivation. I think I had only considered the air transportation when writing the answer, which doesn't proper address the title of the question. And even though, in many cases "All flights suspended" still allowed repatriation flights, eg Thailand. – Franck Dernoncourt yesterday

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