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EU Lifts Non-Essential Travel Ban for Vaccinated & Recovered Travellers From Third Countries From March 1

From 1 March 2022, EU member states are advised to lift the ban on non-essential travel for third-country nationals who have been vaccinated against COVID-19, as well as for those who have recovered from the virus.

Updating the recommendation on a temporary restriction of non-essential travel to the EU, the bloc’s council noted that the newly made recommendation comes in light of the evolution of the pandemic, as well as the high proportion of the world’s population vaccinated against COVID-19.

The Council noted in “the adjustments made to respond to the evolution of the epidemic, increased vaccination uptake and management of booster doses, and recognition of an increasing number of certificates issued by third countries as being equivalent to the EU COVID digital certificate”. Press release issued today, February 1.

The same also highlights that the updated recommendation will begin to apply on March 1.

According to the council, European Union countries should allow entry to non-essential travelers who have been vaccinated with one of the vaccines that has been given the green light by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) or the World Health Organization (WHO).

However, for travelers who have been vaccinated with vaccines approved by WHO but not by the EMA, COVID-19 test results may be required prior to departure.

All travelers must have been vaccinated at least 14 days before their trip to the EU country, but no later than 270 days before they are allowed to enter as vaccinated people. Those who have been vaccinated for more than nine months must receive a booster in order to be allowed to enter the country.

Likewise, travelers who have contracted the COVID-19 virus in the past 180 days and recovered from it should also be allowed to enter the block, even for non-essential purposes such as tourism.

“A negative PCR test prior to departure may also be required for people who have recovered from COVID-19, as well as for people who have been vaccinated with an EU approved vaccine but do not hold an EU certification or equivalent,” the council notes.

The council also reminds member states to allow entry to children aged 6-18 traveling with a negative PCR test done as soon as 72 hours prior to departure. Children under the age of six must be exempted from all entry restrictions.

Due to the new recommendation, travelers from countries with which the European Union has reached an agreement on recognizing their COVID-19 certificates will benefit. The countries that have so far such an agreement with the European Union are as follows:

Albania Andorra Armenia Benin Cabo Verde El Salvador Faroe Islands Georgia Israel Iceland Jordan Lebanon Liechtenstein Moldova Monaco Montenegro Morocco New Zealand North Macedonia Norway Panama San Marino Serbia Singapore Switzerland Taiwan Thailand Tunisia Togo Turkey Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom Uruguay Vatican

>> The EU accepts COVID-19 certificates from two additional countries as equivalent to the EU COVID digital certificate

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