Travel: Norway increases number of countries exempt from hotel quarantine rule

Travel: Norway increases number of countries exempt from hotel quarantine rule
A plane at Oslo airport. Photo by Robert Bye on Unsplash
The Norwegian government, on Friday, added to its list of countries exempt from its Covid-19 hotel quarantine requirements and announced that certain travellers would be able to take Covid tests to leave quarantine earlier.

The government announced it was lifting the quarantine hotel obligation for more countries at a press conference on Friday. 

In total, the UK and a list of countries from the EEA/Schengen area are now exempt from the hotel quarantine requirement. Travellers will still be obliged to carry out the 10-day quarantine period at home or another suitable location

As of Friday all passengers from Bulgaria, San Marino, Poland, Portugal, Luxembourg, Romania, the Vatican, Austria, Liechtenstein, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Switzerland, Hungary, the Faroe Islands, Ireland, Italy, the United Kingdom, Germany and Monaco, will no longer be forced into quarantine hotels. 

Travellers from southern Denmark and several regions in Finland are also exempt from hotel quarantine.

READ MORE: ‘My arguments didn’t matter’: How I ended up in a quarantine hotel in Norway 

Those arriving from Malta and Iceland, with no stopovers, have become exempt from quarantine completely. 

“It is gratifying to see that infection rates in Europe are falling. This means that more people can spend the entry quarantine in their own home,” Justice Minister Monica Mæland said in a statement.

The changes came into effect on Friday afternoon. 

The government also announced that those who are either fully vaccinated, have received a vaccine at least three weeks ago, and those who have had Covid-19 in the last six months will be able to take a PCR test to leave quarantine entirely after three days. 

“There is still a risk that the protected will become infected and spread the infection further, but the risk is far less than for the unprotected. We therefore believe it is justifiable to make the quarantine period shorter for this group,” Health Minister Bent Høie said at the press conference. 

However, this new rule only applies to those who have tested positive for Coronavirus or received their first jab in Norway. 

Travellers who have met these requirements will need to document this through the preliminary Covid-19 certificate via

Travellers vaccinated abroad will not be able to test out of quarantine hotels until the EU’s vaccine passport launches in July.

Children under 12 will also be able to test themselves out of quarantine. 

“According to the Norwegian Institute of Public Health, children spread less infection than adults, and children under the age of 12 are believed to have a 50 percent lower risk of becoming infected with coronavirus,” Høie said

The government’s advice to avoid international travel would remain in place. 

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