European Commission has now officially released an updated list of countries from which non-essential travel to the bloc + Schengen ought to be allowed by member states.
As it was already leaked over the weekend, six countries were removed from the safe-list, including the United States, from which non-essential travel to the EU is halted for non-vaccinated (+ perhaps others too).
You can access the European Council’s press release here.
An interesting part:
Following a review under the recommendation on the gradual lifting of the temporary restrictions on non-essential travel into the EU, the Council updated the list of countries, special administrative regions and other entities and territorial authorities for which travel restrictions should be lifted. In particular, Israel, Kosovo, Lebanon, Montenegro, the Republic of North Macedonia and the United States of America were removed from the list.
Non-essential travel to the EU from countries or entities not listed in Annex I is subject to temporary travel restriction. This is without prejudice to the possibility for member states to lift the temporary restriction on non-essential travel to the EU for fully vaccinated travellers.
Member states can choose not to apply this non-essential traveler ban for those inoculated with the EMA or WHO-approved Covid-19 vaccines.
Each European Union and Schengen country can decide whether to go with the outer border restrictions update recommended by the European Commission and whether they choose to apply them to all six countries. Usually, they do, and no government objected to the proposal put forward last Friday.
There could also be different entry requirements regarding vaccination (are vaccinated allowed or not) and tests depending on your entry country to EU/Schengen like there have been in place for the entire summer.
Countries removed from the safe list:
- Republic of North Macedonia
- the United States of America
An updated list of safe countries:
- Bosnia and Hercegovina
- Brunei Darussalam
- New Zealand
- Republic of Moldova
- Saudi Arabia
- South Korea
- China, subject to confirmation of reciprocity
- Travel restrictions should also be gradually lifted for the special administrative regions of China Hong Kong and Macao.
EU’s infographic who should be allowed to travel to the bloc:
It has been challenging to navigate even the intra-Schengen travel and entry rules for bloc’s citizens, and they have been in influx for the better part of the past 18 months, often changing on very short notice.
Whether to allow non-essential travelers who have been fully vaccinated from the United States is up to each member state to decide. I cannot quite decipher what the European Commission tries to signal members; should they not allow vaccinated travelers to enter?