Germany Set to Ease Travel Restrictions for UK and Others

Germany Set to Ease Travel Restrictions for UK and Others

The German government will soften coronavirus travel rules for travellers from Britain along with four other countries. 

Travellers from the UK to Germany will face softer quarantine restrictions, after altered recommendations from the German public health agency, the Robert Koch Institute published on 5 July

The restrictions for the UK, along with Portugal, Russia, India and Nepal, will be relaxed from 7 July. The change will mean simpler requirements for people visiting from those countries. Travellers who have had either both vaccination doses or who can demonstrate they have recovered from COVID, will not need to be isolated on their return or arrival.

Individuals who have not been vaccinated will be required to self-isolate, but only for up to 10 days with the option to leave quarantine early with a negative coronavirus test on the fifth day.

Under the countries' previous classification, all people reaching Germany were required to self-isolate for 14 days, no matter what their personal COVID status. And only German citizens or residents were permitted to travel from the affected countries.

The plan, which kicks in on 7 July, comes after talks between British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Changes to German Travel List

Officials in Berlin had feared that British nationals could spread the more contagious variant known as delta variant, however, now that new variant is also present in continental Europe, Germany has downgraded the UK to a “high-incidence area” for coronavirus infections.

It is the second-highest designation under the German government's COVID-19 travel rules. 

Eleven countries remain on Germany's “virus variant area” list.

The remaining countries are:

  • Botswana
  • Brazil
  • Eswatini
  • Lesotho
  • Malawi
  • Mozambique
  • Namibia
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe
  • South Africa
  • Uruguay

Only German nationals and permanent residents travelling from these countries are allowed to enter Germany. All travellers from virus variant areas are mandated to self-isolate for 14 days regardless of their personal COVID status.

Travel from Germany to the UK

Germany is currently on the UK's amber list for international travel, which means that people returning from Germany to the UK must self-isolate for 10 days on arrival.

Travellers must also take a pre-departure COVID test, as well as a PCR test on or before day 2 and on or after day 8.

However, the travel traffic light system is due to be reviewed later this week, with expectations that people who have been fully vaccinated against coronavirus will have the freedom to travel quarantine-free.

A date has not yet been confirmed for the announcement, but Downing Street stated on 5 July that more information on travel rules will be released by the Transport Secretary in the coming days.

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