Returning to the USA from Oaxaca? Covid Exit Test Needed

My United flight to Houston from Oaxaca leaves tomorrow morning at 7:45 am. I got a notice from the airline several days ago that I needed a negative covid test dated at maximum 72 hours before departure. That put me to November 8 as the earliest I could get the test.

It’s one more layer of trip planning that we need to deal with during this pandemic.

Last week, Laboratorios San Francisco came to our Teotitlan Del Valle inn to test eight in our travel group who were departing the next day. For large groups they are able to do that and we made arrangements in advance. Everyone tested negative.

Laboratorios San Francisco operates labs all over the city. The closest one to me is in Tlacolula. I called in advance to see if I needed an appointment. No, you don’t, the nurse said, but we only offer the test from noon to 2 pm and from 5 to 6 pm daily. I arranged my day to be there at 5 pm, well within the 72 hour window.

I decided to do the test well enough in advance within the window allowed in case I tested positive (and I needed to regroup) or it read as a false positive and I needed to get retested.

There was no wait for the test. I showed identification and reviewed my birthdate, phone number and name spelling. The test took a minute. The nurse who administered it wore a mask, face shield, gloves and a protective body gown. She gently put a swab up my nose and I sat there while she did the test tube process. Fifteen minutes later I was out the door. Cost: 600 pesos or $30 USD. They take credit cards.

The results were negative. I have the printed documentation to present at airport check-in.

There are many places around the city to get the test, including at some Ahorro pharmacies. Upon arrival I took a photo of all the places where one can get tested. Maybe your hotel can help you find one close by.

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