Europe is one of the few places where tourism is a flourished business every time of the year. Home to one of the seven wonders in the world, the Colosseum in Italy, Europe is a bustling destination filled with innumerable worth-visiting locations, one for every occasion. When in Europe, a traveler should let his mind wander free and be one’s guide. A vacation package to this country will be irreplaceable. Be it art or architecture, Europe is where the best of humanity’s advanced and progressive ideas have come from. Right from Germany’s castles to Italy’s magnanimous art, a trip to Europe will be like no other. It’s an invitation no one can say no to.
The tourism in Europe, just like other destinations, had to be suspended due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. From March 15, the gigantic continent locked its borders and implemented the most stringent lockdown.
The European Union Council, on behalf of its member nations, took decisions concerning lockdown and tourism. Recently, the council issued a counter-notice to resume International tourism and flight operations. Check out which countries’ nationals are allowed to travel and other updates of Europe.
Countries whose nationals are allowed to enter Europe from July:
After detailed discussion and recommendation from the member nations, the European Council has laid out a list of countries that will allow entering the continent from July 01, 2020. Though the Council does not recommend non-essential travel, with strict health protocols in place, the below countries are allowed to travel to Europe.
As per the Council report, the above countries have reported fewer coronavirus cases in the last one month. Similarly, another factor that the Council has considered as criteria is whether the countries ease travel restrictions for European travelers.
In that case, China can be included as the 15th nation to the above list. Both the destinations are currently in talks to initiate reciprocity in allowing European tourists to enter China and vice versa. But, as for now, it seems unlikely.
Countries that are banned from traveling:
Reports suggest that the Council had about 54 countries on the draft. On the recommendations and advice from member states, the list considerably shrunk to 14 countries.
The United States, Brazil, Russia, and India have rising coronavirus cases. Hence, Europe will not reopen its borders to them at present.
Countries such as Israel, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey are expected to be added to the list soon. Moreover, Caribbean nations, Africa, and South-east Asia are believed to be able to enter Europe soon.
That said, about fifty nations have been barred by the European Council. But the travel ban is not permanent, of course. Europe will gradually reopen its borders for all countries when the pandemic dilemma subsides at once.
Tourists from the above-mentioned countries who wish to create a vacation package to Europe need to wait until the continent removes all restrictions.
Who can travel to Europe, despite the travel restrictions?
Despite the Council’s non-legal binding agreement, and travel restrictions, the below categories of people are allowed to travel Europe:
The European government has agreed to lift restrictions for a few specific categories of employees and workers based on their designation, and travel purposes. They include the following:
Doctors, health researchers, medical professionals, and practitioners,
Highly qualified employers and employees whose nature of work is undeniable from the economic and social perspective, etc.
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), and
The European Council agreement is not a legally binding document:
Though the Council allowed the 14 countries under carefully conducted analysis and discussion, the agreement is not a legal document. Hence, tourists should note that the list will be reviewed by the Council every two weeks. Europe has the authority to remove any country from the mentioned 14 nations as well as add as per the current updates.
Some criteria the Council considers are a response to surging coronavirus cases, treatment, isolation methods, contact tracing, medical facilities, and if the country is ready to allow European travelers.
Re-Open European Union- an online platform to assist travelers and tourists traveling to Europe:
Since the novel coronavirus pandemic deems to be highly unpredictable and challenging, various countries impose travel restrictions as well as update them accordingly. Some sudden changes may create hassles for your vacation package.
To tackle the uncertainty in an organized manner, the European Union has introduced the “Re-Open EU”. This web platform is specially created to assist travelers and tourists. All information and current travel restrictions concerning tourism are updated on this platform.
Travel experts and the European government advise tourists to check the portal before preparing their trip. Updates related to travels, border status, transportation, health protocols, safety measures such as wearing a face mask and maintaining social distancing, etc. are mentioned in the portal.
“Re-Open EU” is a collaborative platform wherein not just the European Council but all member nations provide up-to-date information concerning the status quo. Tourists can search and update themselves based on the country they will be traveling to in Europe.
Tourists can easily navigate the application in mobile as well as computer. It is available in about 24 official languages, English being one of them. It is an all-in-all platform enabling safe tourism in Europe.