Schengen Visa News

Bulgaria Removes Switzerland, Belgium, Portugal & France From Dark Red Category – Adds Netherlands

The Bulgarian authorities have published the updated list of safe travel countries, which takes effect today, February 17.

According to the Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, international arrivals are allowed to enter the country upon presentation of a certificate of vaccination, recovery or testing, with the last test being taken 72 hours before departure for PCR tests and 24 hours before arrival for rapid antigen tests, reports.

This procedure applies to all categories, including the red category, which consists of the following countries:

EU: Austria, Belgium, Germany, Greece, Greenland, Ireland, Spain, Italy, Cyprus, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Monaco, Andorra, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, San Marino, Hungary, Finland, France, Croatia, Czech Republic, Switzerland and Sweden

Third countries: Australia, Azerbaijan, Albania, Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Aruba, Barbados, Belarus, Belize, Bermuda, Bonner, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, British Virgin Islands, Brunei, United Kingdom, Gibraltar, Grenada, Dominica , Iran, Jordan, Kiribati, Kosovo, Costa Rica, Kuwait, Curacao, Libya, Lebanon, Maldives, Moldova, Mongolia, Oman, Isle of Man, Palestine, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, North Macedonia, Russia, Saba, Saint Lucia, and Saint Pierre and Miquelon, Seychelles, Singapore, Saint Eustatius, Suriname, United States, Serbia, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukraine, Uruguay, French Polynesia, Montenegro, Chile, Japan

Bulgarian citizens and permanent residents coming from the red zone must present one of the above-mentioned certificates. In the event that they do not do so, they will be quarantined for ten days, with the possibility of reducing the time for self-isolation by taking a PCR or antigen test on the third day.

The press release issued by the authority states that “in the absence of the above-mentioned documents, the person must be isolated for a period of ten days at home or in another place of residence where he indicated that he will reside.”

Furthermore, the Bulgarian authorities have introduced the dark red zone, which represents countries with a high risk of contracting COVID-19 cases. The dark red area includes the following countries:

Afghanistan Bahrain Georgia Denmark Estonia Israel Iceland Cayman Islands North Korea Latvia Lithuania Netherlands New Caledonia Palau Slovakia Slovenia Tanzania Faroe Islands

Arrivals from these countries are required to present a vaccination or recovery certificate as well as a PCR test performed 72 hours prior to arrival.

>> Bulgaria introduces the dark red category, and adds 23 countries to it

The ministry also notes that travelers who provide a booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine are exempt from submitting additional test certificates.

The orange category includes all countries not mentioned in the previous categories, entry into Bulgaria is allowed provided the traveler presents a vaccination, certificate, test result or other certificate equivalent to the EU COVID-19 digital certificate. On the other hand, the green category, whose arrivals are subject to more moderate entry rules, does not include any country, the ministry’s press release reveals.

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