EU Countries Tightening Restrictions for US Travellers

EU Countries Tightening Restrictions for US Travellers

The United States was added to the white list in mid-June after reporting a decreasing trend in COVID-19 case numbers, and Americans have been able to travel around some European countries with relative ease this summer. 

However, that changed last week after the US along with Israel, Lebanon, Kosovo, Montenegro and North Macedonia were removed from the EU’s white list.

The EU's white list is made up of countries from outside the EU that have low COVID-19 infection rates and are therefore considered safe. Residents from white list countries are permitted to enjoy quarantine-free travel to and within the EU, without additional restrictions such as testing.

The US was dropped from the list as the country surpassed the white list limit of 75 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 over a 14-day period, with hospitalisations across the country increasing too. 

This means that the EU recommends that the 27 member states start to reimpose a travel ban on US visitors, and American tourists are no longer eligible to travel to some countries restriction-free.

Impacts on US Travellers

The recommendation is not binding and it's up to each individual country to decide whether or not to impose them. Several EU countries have announced that they will keep permitting tourists from the US for non-essential reasons including tourism. Other countries followed the recommendation by allowing only vaccinated visitors from the US and testing requirements.

To see a list of EU countries that have not implemented restrictions on US travellers, check our blog post.

These are the European countries that have imposed restrictions on US travellers.


The US is designated as a high risk “red zone” area in Bulgaria's classification system and therefore people are not permitted to travel to Bulgaria from the US at present.


Denmark has announced that from 6 September unvaccinated travellers arriving from the US are banned from entering the country. However, the government authorities have emphasised that unvaccinated travellers with essential purposes such as work and studies will be permitted entry.

In contrast, those who prove that they have been fully vaccinated with an EMA-approved vaccine will still be allowed entry without having to follow testing or self-isolation rules.


Italy now obliges all travellers from the US and those who have stayed there during the last 14 days to present a PCR or rapid antigen test results taken within 72 hours before entry, regardless of their vaccination status. In addition, everyone is required to fill in the digital passenger locator form.


Arrivals from the US must self-quarantine for 10 days upon arrival, and present a negative result from a PCR test taken within 48 hours of departure. This applies to everyone regardless of vaccination status or recovery. People can take a second test on day five and if the result is negative, they may be permitted to leave quarantine early.


US arrivals must present one of the following to enter Spain: 

  • proof of full vaccination
  • proof of recovery from COVID-19 within the last 180 days
  • a negative PCR test (taken no more than 72 hours before arriving in Spain)  
  • antigen test (taken no more than 48 hours before arriving in Spain)


As of 6 September, residents of the US are not permitted to enter Sweden for nonessential travel, regardless of vaccination status, until at least 31 October.

It's important to note that the above entry regulations generally apply only when the US is the country you depart from. 

US citizens who have transited or spent time in a designated high-risk or virus-variant area may be subject to additional restrictions, depending on the destination.

If you have a scheduled trip to an EU country and are unsure how the suggested restrictions will affect your trip, be sure to check in with the US embassy of your destination. 

What do you think of these restrictions? Talk to us in the comment section below.

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IaM can help with your visa application to the United States, the UK & other countries

If you need help with a US visa, a UK Visa, or visa to Europe, including help with appointment booking obligations, IaM can help. For more information and advice on US immigration, UK immigration law and US visa applications or if you need any help or assistance please, reach out to your Visa Coordinator at IaM.

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