“EU Corona certificate” to make travel easier from February

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As of Feb. 1, the determining factor for travel in the EU should no longer be how strong the infection incidence is in the country of departure. Instead, greater attention is to be paid to vaccination, testing or recovery certificates.

In the future, a valid EU Corona certificate will be more important for travel in the EU than the level of infection in the country of departure. The EU states agreed on Tuesday that from February 1, it should no longer be decisive where a trip starts – but whether a valid vaccination, test or convalescent certificate is available. This was announced by the EU countries on Tuesday. In doing so, they are largely following a proposal presented by the EU Commission two months ago.

Exceptions for children
In addition to vaccines approved in the EU, agents accepted by the WHO or national authorities should also suffice, according to the agreement. A PCR test should be done at the earliest 72, a rapid test 24 hours before travel. A convalescent certificate is to be valid for 180 days. Those without a certificate should test upon arrival. There are exceptions for children. There should be no additional restrictions. A spokesman for the EU Commission stressed, “The least we can all expect is that the member states also implement this recommendation.”

Since the Omicron variant has now spread throughout Europe, it is also to be examined whether the travel restrictions introduced in view of the variant in some member states should be lifted.

More freedoms with booster vaccination
“We are still not out of the crisis, so it is of course necessary to remain coordinated here at the European level,” Europe Minister Karoline Edtstadler (ÖVP) said Tuesday ahead of a meeting with her EU counterparts in Brussels. She said it was “very important for Austria that we do not orient ourselves downwards in terms of level, but that we maintain the high standards, for example with regard to testing capacities, and that we also transfer this to the European Union.”

Unlike Germany, for example, Austria no longer differentiates between virus variant and high-risk areas. Instead, all entrants are required to present a vaccination or recovery certificate. They must also present a PCR test that is no more than 72 hours old. Only persons who have already been vaccinated three times are exempt from this obligation. Unvaccinated persons, on the other hand, must in any case undergo ten days of isolation with the possibility of release at the earliest on the fifth day after entry.

  • source: APA/picture: kreiszeitung.de
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