Covid-19 test needed before flight for Special Entry Permit holder?

Question for anyone who is in the know or who has gone through this process already:

I do not yet have an ARC, but I will soon have a special entry permit to work in Taiwan. I have read recently that ARC/APRC holders no longer need a COVID-19 test before boarding a flight to Taiwan. However, it seems like the demographic I fall in still needs one? If I do need to show proof that I am negative before I can board a plane to TW, what exactly is the window for my proof to be considered eligible? Is it within three days of the test being administered (this is literally impossible since COVID tests in the US have a minimum 3 day processing time) or is it within 3 days of me getting back the negative result? Really hope the latter, but things seem unclear and I have not been able to follow up with TECO since it is the weekend.

Any help will be greatly appreciated!

A big insurer on the West Coast can do the test and get the result back in 12-24 hours.
Check your insurance provider.
Tell them exactly why you need it and the urgency.
If you do not have an insurer, then google galore and find some clinic near you that guarantees a result within 24/36 hours. Tell them why you need it. Many Americans need to get Covid-19 test before flying to Alaska, so it is not unheard of.
As for the 3-day window, it is not the “tester” that is the problem, but the lab where the tester/ sends the test to. If the lab (which is apart from the clinic/hospital) has a huge overload of cases to test, then yes, it may influence when your result gets back.

If you do need the 3-day test, then here’s how Taiwan government calculates it.
For example, your flight takes off sometime on July 14 (does Not matter what time of day). Taiwan government will not include that day in calculation. It will work backward from then for 3 full days. So, the “earliest” you can take the test would be starting 12:01a.m. on July 11.
Call up Eva Air staff (NOT the toll-free booking agent) at a West Coast airport. Try this number after 6pm West Coast time: 206 242 6868. They should confirm this (again, if in fact, you need that 3-day window).
Make sure the negative test certificate has the clinic with some doctor’s signature on it and better yet, in color.
Good luck


This is really good info. Appreciate this!

I believe it’s 3 business days… so if your flight is on July 14 (Tuesday), the earliest you can take the test would be July 9th (because 11th and 12th aren’t considered business days).

Correct. The government changed that to business days (before they cancelled the requirement for ARC/APRC holders).

Ah yep, looks like foreign nationals coming to Taiwan with a special entry permit still need a test. Assuming they do not arrive by boat :thinking:

Thanks so much for this. I called the EVA Air team to ask them about whether or not NWOHRs need a COVID test prior to flying to Taiwan. I sent them both my US and Taiwan NWOHR passports to check, and they told me that I would not need a COVID test prior to arriving in Taiwan.

Hope this helps anyone also wondering!

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I’m set to come to Taiwan for work on Saturday on a 1:30am flight and arrive on Sunday the 20th. My embassy in the states is only issuing 60 day visitor visas with the special entry permit, not residency visas. I do have my work permit and authenticated health check already.

I’m running into a situation where not a single test site in my state does same day results for PCR testing now. I managed to get one yesterday, the 15th, that I will have back before Friday, the 18th.

My flight is with EVA out of Seattle. I’m worried my test will be out of time frame of acceptance by the airline and immigration in Taiwan. I’m currently living in Arkansas if that matters.

If anyone has any information, I would be very grateful.

Eva Air staff phone number there. Ask them directly. They will confirm anything, because they send the documents at checkout counter directly to Taiwan government office. They may know of cases like yours.

My hubby just found out he got the wrong test. It has to be RT PCR test and not the antigen type. So he had to reschedule his flight.

Consider calling the (private) urgent care clinics in your area, which often contract with private and university labs and are much quicker to return results. The requirement is 3 business days, so if you get your results on Thursday, you have until Tuesday the following week to start the outbound flight. Make sure it is a PCR test, and that the lab report (may have to ask for it from the clinic) has the letters “PCR” on it (the gate agents are not molecular biologists and we found out the hard way). Good luck!