EU President Ursula von der Leyen recently said fully vaccinated Americans may be able to make it to Europe this summer. While this news has been widely reported, not everyone is so optimistic. With new lockdowns coming into effect in some countries and varying progress on immunization programs, Europe could remain difficult to visit for some time to come.
In Scandinavian countries, Denmark, Norway and Sweden, slow progress on national immunization programs means that travel restrictions are unlikely to be lifted to a large extent in May.
At present, none of the entry requirements set by the three countries distinguish between vaccinated and unvaccinated visitors, although such rules are expected to be introduced later this year.
Here are the rules and regulations currently in force for anyone entering Denmark, Norway and Sweden in May 2021. These are of course subject to change at short notice.
Latest coronavirus situation: As of April 29, a total of 251,428 positive test results had been recorded since the start of the pandemic. 2,485 people died.
Progress of vaccination: As of April 29, 10.9% of the population of Denmark were fully vaccinated, with 22.5% having received at least one dose.
Entry rules and restrictions: Most foreign citizens who do not reside in Denmark can only enter the country with a “valid goal” and a negative Covid-19 test result. If you are traveling by plane, the test result must be shown before boarding the plane to Denmark.
A valid goal includes employment, critical business trips, and visiting family or a partner. It does not include tourism or any form of pleasure travel. Anyone entering Denmark will have to take a test and then self-isolate for 10 days.
Denmark’s color-coding system allows travelers from certain countries to enter for any reason and skip the isolation requirement, although the requirement for a negative test result still applies. However, at the time of writing, only a few countries fall into this “yellow” category, including Australia and New Zealand.
For updates, check Denmark’s official Covid-19 website.
Latest coronavirus situation: As of April 29, a total of 112,715 positive test results had been recorded since the start of the pandemic. 756 people died.
Progress of vaccination: As of April 29, 6.63% of the Norwegian population was fully vaccinated, with 24.92% having received at least one dose.
Entry rules and restrictions: The Prime Minister announced a four-step plan to reopen the country in the coming months. However, entry restrictions are expected to remain strict throughout May, although additional family visits and business trips may be permitted.
At the time of writing, the vast majority of non-resident aliens are only allowed to enter Norway for essential reasons, such as visiting children or some business reasons, including seafarers and commercial carriers. .
People arriving from abroad must test negative for Covid-19 and then quarantine for 10 days, with a few exceptions for business travelers. If a private residence is not available for the quarantine, the traveler must stay in a quarantine hotel at a cost of 500 Norwegian crowns (60 USD) per night. Norwegian residents should also stay in a quarantine hotel if travel was not essential.
For updates, see the Coronavirus webpages of the Norwegian Institute of Public Health.
Latest coronavirus situation: As of April 29, a total of 973,604 positive test results had been recorded since the start of the pandemic. 14,048 people died.
Progress of vaccination: As of April 30, 9.2% of the Swedish population was fully vaccinated, with 30.7% having received at least one dose.
Entry rules and restrictions: The temporary entry ban for non-essential travel to the EU via Sweden remains in place throughout May. Exemptions are possible for urgent travel and for seasonal workers employed in agriculture, forestry and horticulture.
All foreign countries visiting Sweden must show a negative Covid-19 test to be admitted. The government recommends – but does not require – tests on arrival and after five days in Sweden.
For updates, see the Sweden Crisis Information website.