Which European countries have the least travel restrictions at the moment?
As travel restrictions are starting to rise in Europe and beyond, and talks about a UK-US travel corridor intensify before the summer travel becomes more and more possible.
The EU COVID travel pass is being rolled out across the block, so you’ll almost certainly need it when traveling in Europe. All the details on how the pass works here.
This is a guide to popular tourist destinations that have relaxed COVID requirements ahead of the summer season.
Which are the best European countries to travel to at the moment?
Based on international and internal border status, tourist culture on arrival – including curfews and access to public facilities – and quarantine status, these are the best vacation spots right now .
- International tourists have been welcome in Italy since early June, with most visitors only having to show a negative COVID-19 test upon arrival.
- Some countries, like the United States, will still need to follow a 10-day quarantine.
- All Italian regions are expected to be classified as ‘low risk’ by the end of June, meaning that movement between areas is possible.
- Cafes, bars, restaurants, hotels and theaters have partially reopened to the public.
- Face masks remain mandatory indoors and outdoors in public
- The curfew is currently at midnight, but it is expected to be completely lifted on June 21.
- If you are vaccinated with an EU-approved vaccine, France is now open to international travelers.
- Vaccinated visitors must always provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test carried out no later than 72 hours before arrival.
- France has just pushed back its curfews to 11 p.m., and cafes and restaurants are reopening at lower capacity.
- Face masks remain mandatory – even outdoors – but that should change by the end of the month.
- Spain has kicked off its summer tourist season by welcoming all vaccinated travelers, as well as European tourists who can provide negative test results.
- The Spanish authorities have implemented a regional traffic light system, which means that even in the very low risk category, bars and restaurants can only take 50% of their usual capacity and must close at 3 a.m.
- Greece was one of the first countries to reopen to tourists as early as May of this year.
- Visitors must provide proof of vaccination or a negative PCR test before entering the country – but it is not necessary to self-quarantine for most.
- Cafes, bars and restaurants are open and the 12:30 am curfew gives patrons plenty of time to get their fill. In addition, iconic sites, including the Acropolis of Athens, are fully functional and accessible.
- Like Spain, the 16 German states are currently subject to their own rules.
- Restrictions for fully vaccinated people have been completely lifted and hotels and restaurants are opening their doors.
Will there be a UK-US travel corridor?
After the United States ruled that international travel will remain on hold for a foreseeable time, talks are now underway between the United States and the United Kingdom around a possible travel corridor opened this year. Vaccination efforts in both countries are well underway, so some consider transatlantic travel a relatively low risk.
Two of the world leaders most affected when the coronavirus reached its peak, US President Joe Biden and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson met ahead of the G7 summit last week to discuss travel between the two countries. It is believed the travel corridor could reopen at some point this summer, but that will depend on closely monitored infection rates and the success of their respective vaccination programs.