Germany tightens entry rules from areas where coronavirus variants are present

Due to the spread of the highly contagious coronavirus variant “Omikron”, the German Federal Government decided today to tighten the rules for entry from coronavirus variant areas. In future, anyone wishing to enter Germany from such an area will have to submit a negative PCR test result. The rule will soon apply to everyone over the age of six.

The measure aims to slow the spread of omicron

Earlier, state health ministers advocated for changes to prevent and slow the spread of the Omicron variant for as long as possible so that more people can get vaccinated. The areas where the Omikron variant is currently found are various countries in southern Africa and, as of Monday, the United Kingdom.

PCR test also for transit

Under the new regulation, the enhanced protective measures are intended to contribute to the early detection of infections even before entry. The mandatory PCR test will also apply to travelers who are merely passing through Germany.

This rule was already in force in Bavaria

In Bavaria, the stricter entry rules were already decreed after the UK was classified as a virus-prone area. “According to the Bavarian General Ordinance, a simple negative antigen test result is no longer sufficient confirmation of the test for people entering Germany from areas affected by the virus variant,” – Health Minister Klaus Holetschek (CSU) explained on Sunday. The result of the PCR test must be in possession upon entry or taken immediately after crossing the border.

Testing will be mandatory from the age of six

The PCR test must not be older than 48 hours when entering Germany alone. If traveling by plane, ferry, bus or train, the test cannot be older than 48 hours from the start of transportation. Since children as young as five can now also be vaccinated against Covid-19, the age limit for mandatory testing will be lowered from the current twelve years to six.

In any case, there is a two-week quarantine requirement for people entering Germany from areas where the virus variant is present – even for vaccinated people and those who have recovered. This period cannot be shortened by a negative test result.


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