There is simply no way of escaping exhaustion from touring Europe simply because of its countless amazing destinations. Etched from a storybook, Europe stands as the first choice for vacation packages. Every country on this continent has contributed to the world. The concept of democracy was offered by Greece, Renaissance came to birth in Italy, and administration and governance from the United Kingdom.
The glorious landscapes of this gigantic continent had to be locked down due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. The European Council amended several travel restrictions to limit the spread of the virus.
Recently, the Council recommended lifting the restrictions in a phased manner. With the pandemic slowly subsiding, people from several third countries and member nations are allowed to travel to the continent.
Here’s what tourists should know concerning Europe’s travel ban.
Countries that have been exempted from the travel ban:
The European Council, after sheer analysis and discussion, accepted the recommendation of lifting travel restrictions for several nations. From July 01, tourists from the below countries can travel and tour the continent with strict health protocols to be followed.
Who is still allowed to travel despite the restrictions?
Except for the above-mentioned countries, there are many other nations which come under the restrictions. Yet, a few categories of people are allowed to enter the continent. They are as follows:
European Union citizens and family members
People who are long-term European residents and wish to come back to the continent
People who want to travel due to unavoidable reasons.
The above categories are also applicable for people belonging to or living in the non-European nations such as Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Switzerland.
The Council has extended its support by lifting restrictions for some specific categories of people on basis of vitality and status. They include:
Doctors, health researchers, medical professionals, and practitioners.
Transport, and Communication personnel.
Diplomats, and officials of International Organizations provided they travel for significant reasons wherein their presence is necessary.
Military officials, humanitarian workers, and civil protection officers based on the nature of their work.
Students traveling for study (strictly to be reviewed as per the reason).
Highly qualified employers and employees whose nature of work is undeniable from the economic and social perspective, etc.
Countries not allowed traveling to Europe:
Due to the increasing cases in countries such as the United States, Brazil, Russia, and India, the European continent will not reopen its borders for these mentioned countries. The chances of the restrictions to be eased even by August are sadly less. Hence, tourists who wish to plan a vacation package to Europe need to wait for a considerable amount of time.
Even though China has quite fewer cases as compared to the former countries, it is still in the talks to be included in the list. Precisely, the European Council will exempt travel restrictions by issuing a reciprocal agreement with China. That means as the Chinese people will be allowed to travel in the European continent, Europeans should be likewise allowed to enter China.
Not a legally binding document:
It is not a legal document. Tourists should note that the above list will be reviewed and updated every once in two weeks. These countries have been suggested for exemption from travel restrictions owing to the pandemic crisis and lockdown measures implemented. The Council has the full authority to remove a country owing to the worsening condition.
Countries are expected to meet a few criteria such as a decrease in the number of new cases from the last 20 to 14 days, response to surging cases concerning testing, containment, tracking contacts, new economic and governance measures, etc.
European countries that are welcoming tourists:
As the continent unlocks its internal and external borders, here is a list of countries that are awaiting tourists to set foot after a long time. Tourists can finally make a vacation package to these countries, provided they belong to the list of countries enlisted by the European council.
Thus, travel experts suggest tourists keep updating themselves concerning the travel restrictions before planning the trip. Failing to know the current restrictions may result in a waste of money as most of the airlines are not offering a refund.
France had reopened its borders for people belonging to Europe from mid-June. Based on the recommendation of the European Council, from July 01, it started to welcome tourists who hail from the 14 enlisted countries.
Tourists can make use of this time and curate a vacation package to this country. Restaurants and bars have reopened with limited seating capacity. Stadiums, historical sites, cinema, and event venues are gradually opening. All other adventures and tours are about to start from mid-July with experienced guides and tour operators. Masks and social distancing are to be strictly followed.
Germany currently allows tourists from Canada, Austria, Australia, Montenegro, New Zealand, Tunisia, Uruguay, and Thailand. It will be soon reopening its borders to other countries as mentioned in the list soon provided the countries allow Germans to travel in their countries.
Greece has promised to restart tourism from mid-June. It has currently reopened its borders for countries that have reported low cases in the last one month. As for now, the country is experimenting with tourists from a limited number of countries. The list of countries will gradually increase.
Tourists are allowed to relax in more than a hundred beaches. Social distancing is not to be compromised at any cost. Hotels are providing training to their employees concerning safety measures. Cafés and restaurants are operating with limited seating capacity. Take away shops have to provide neatly packaged goods.
Other countries slowly joining the bandwagon with strict measures include the United Kingdom, Italy, Portugal, Spain, etc. The ease in restriction is not subjected to be permanent. Therefore, tourists are requested to stay updated about travel restrictions before planning their trips.