The list of restrictions for people traveling from the United States to Europe is growing as European Union members implement new rules amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
EU countries including Spain, Denmark, Italy and Norway are tightening restrictions for tourists traveling from the U.S. in the wake of the European Union’s removal of the country from its safe travel list and as COVID cases continue to rise stateside.
The EU’s August move signaled to member states that they should no longer ease restrictions on nonessential travel for people from the U.S. amid the latest surge in COVID-19 cases. The U.S. was added initially to the EU’s safe travel list in June.
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Spain requiring proof of vaccination
Spain began requiring proof of vaccination from travelers coming from the U.S. starting Monday. U.S. citizens can enter Spain for non-essential tourism by showing proof of vaccine, according to the U.S. Embassy and Consulate in Spain and Andorra.
“Additionally, U.S. citizens traveling from the United States to Spain must present upon arrival in Spain a QR code generated through the Spain Travel Health portal, obtained through the website or by downloading the ‘SpTH app’ in Google Play Store or iTunes App Store for each traveler, regardless of their age,” the Embassy said on its website.
The rule applies to all coming from the U.S., even if they stopped in a third-party country before entering Spain.
Denmark bans unvaccinated tourists from the U.S.
Denmark is banning unvaccinated tourists from the U.S. The change came after the country moved the U.S. to its “orange” travel advisory category on Saturday. Previously, U.S. tourists could enter Denmark by showing a negative coronavirus test or proof of recovery.
Some unvaccinated people from the U.S. can still enter Denmark with proof of a negative COVID-19 test but will need to have “a worthy purpose” such as work, school or legal matters, according to a joint website of the Danish authorities. Unvaccinated travelers permitted to enter will be required to quarantine.
Entry requirements do not change for fully vaccinated U.S. travelers, who are still exempt from testing and quarantine requirements.
Bulgaria moved U.S. to its ‘red zone’
Bulgaria announced earlier this month it would move the U.S. into its “red zone” and prohibit travel from the United States, regardless of vaccination status, as the country faces its fourth surge of COVID-19.
Italy added testing, isolation requirements
Italy added testing and self-isolation requirements for American travelers at the end of August after the EU removed the U.S. from its safe travel list.
Though the most dramatic policy changes affect unvaccinated travelers – who are still welcome to enter the country, so long as they take the time to self-isolate – vaccinated travelers will have to jump through additional hoops of new testing requirements. Travelers can offer proof of vaccination through a paper card with a CDC logo.
Sweden barring travelers from the U.S.
Sweden announced Thursday that travelers from the U.S. would be barred from entering the country regardless of vaccination status starting Monday, amending its travel entry ban.
“Effective September 6, Sweden has removed the United States from its list of countries whose residents are exempted from its entry ban,” the U.S. Embassy in Sweden said on its website. “U.S. citizens who reside in an exempted country are still exempt from the entry ban.”
Norway not allowing U.S. citizens unless visiting family
Norway has also blocked U.S. citizens from entering with one exception: Family.
“Unless the traveler qualifies for a travel exception such as close family members and persons in an established relationship with a resident of Norway,” the U.S. Embassy in Norway said on its website.
Belgium requiring COVID vaccine proof
U.S. residents must be able to show proof of vaccination to enter Belgium on non-essential travel.
“U.S. residents may travel from the United States to Belgium without an Essential Travel Certificate if they can present a valid vaccination certificate,” the U.S. Embassy in Belgium said on its website. “Travelers from the United States who cannot present a valid vaccination certificate will not be permitted to travel to Belgium for non-essential reasons unless they hold an EU citizenship or residency.”
The Netherlands has added testing requirements
The Netherlands began considering the U.S. to be “a very high-risk area” Saturday, the U.S. Embassy and Consulate in the Netherlands said on its website.
Travelers are allowed to enter if they are fully vaccinated and comply with a mandatory quarantine (unless they “meet the criteria for an exemption”).
“As of September 6, 2021, such travelers also must present a negative COVID-19 PCR test OR a negative antigen test performed within 24 hours prior to departure for entry to the Netherlands,” the embassy continued. “Even travelers who are exempt from the testing and quarantine requirements must complete a quarantine declaration.”
Germany added the U.S. to its ‘high-risk’ areas
Germany added the United States to its “high-risk” area list in mid-August, before the EU’s announcement.
Since Aug. 15, travelers who recently spent time in the U.S. need to be fully vaccinated or demonstrate an “important reason” for entering. Those who are unvaccinated or unable to show proof of recovery will need to self-isolate for 10 days upon arrival. The quarantine period can end on the fifth day with proof of a negative coronavirus test.