As European countries re-open, Schengen Area countries have mostly excluded U.S. travelers from entry, with some exceptions (see previous OSAC reporting). While each European country periodically reviews the list of “safe countries,” there is no indication if/when U.S. travelers will be able to conduct normal travel to these locations.
The EU reported that its criteria relate to the epidemiological situation and containment measures, including physical distancing, as well as economic and social considerations in each country, applied cumulatively. Countries should meet the following criteria in particular:
- Close to or below the EU 14-day average, as it stands on June 14, of the rate of new COVID-19 cases;
- The trend of new cases over the same period in comparison to the previous 14 days is stable or decreasing; and
- The overall response to COVID-19, taking into account available information on aspects such as testing, surveillance, contact tracing, containment, treatment, and reporting, as well as the reliability of available information and data sources; and if needed, the total average International Health Regulations (IHR) score across all dimensions.
Those travelers who do not fit into an exemption category – most potential travelers from the United States are subject to restrictions – must wait for the EU to issue a new list, based on the criteria above, to enter one of the 27 EU member states. Private-sector security managers should remember that this restriction does not affect travel to the United Kingdom.
Each U.S. Embassy continues to update its COVID-19 information page for the latest entry/exit, testing, and quarantine requirements, where applicable. Find a consolidated list of all U.S. Embassy COVID-19 info pages here. The European Union has also published an interactive information map online, which it updates on a regular basis.
Attached is a table of the most current EU travel restrictions (as of July 23, 2020), based on U.S. Embassy and local government resources. The table includes a separate category for students, one of the categories exempted from the EU travel restrictions, where interpretation varies from country to country. If you have any questions, contact OSAC's Europe Team.