Travel restrictions are quickly disappearing in Europe


Travel restrictions are quickly disappearing in Europe, with new announcements coming by the week — and, more recently, by the day.

Changes to eliminate Covid-related travel rules gained momentum in January, as a wave of omicron-related infections engulfed the continent.

But parts of Europe didn’t wait to act. Citing high vaccination rates and the mildness of most omicron infections, nations moved to drop rules deemed no longer effective in the global fight against Covid-19.

Before Covid infections peaked in Europe in late January, the United Kingdom and Switzerland had already announced they were scrapping pre-departure Covid tests for vaccinated travelers. Meanwhile, other European countries shortened self-isolation periods and dropped color-coded country travel restrictions.

The Council of the European Union recommended on Jan. 25 that member nations apply a “person-based approach” — rather than a country-based one — that allowed free travel for those with an EU digital Covid certificate that showed proof of vaccination with an EU-approved vaccine, a recent negative Covid test or recovery from an infection.

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