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Reader question: What are the rules for children travelling to Norway with vaccine pass holders?

Norwegian Covid certificate and EU vaccine pass holders aren’t subject to any travel restrictions when travelling to Norway, but what are the rules for children travelling with them? 

Reader question: What are the rules for children travelling to Norway with vaccine pass holders?
Oslo airport terminal. Photo by alh1

Question: We are both fully vaccinated; what are the rules for our children travelling with us to Norway? 

This is a question many families are asking as more and more people across Europe are becoming fully vaccinated. This has opened up new travel possibilities for those wishing to travel to Norway, which had effectively closed its borders to all non-residents and citizens for the best part of six months. 

Possessing a Norwegian or European health pass is perhaps the most hassle-free way to travel to Norway as those who have been fully vaccinated or had Covid in the previous six months and can prove so via a EU or Norwegian vaccine certificate can enter without being forced to quarantine or obliged to test at the border and before arriving. 

However, children typically don’t have access to Norwegian or EU health passes, so what are the rules for them when travelling with their parents? 

What are the rules? 

Previously, children were not granted an exemption from quarantine or entry restrictions even if their parents had been vaccine pass holders.

This meant, for example, if the parents were exempt from entry restrictions into Norway, their children wouldn’t be able to travel with them as they wouldn’t be allowed to enter Norway. 

This also meant families returning to Norway would also have to undergo quarantine even if they were fully vaccinated because their children weren’t. 

That has since changed, however, and as of July 26th children, aged under 18 can travel to Norway and be exempt from any entry restrictions and requirements if their parents are EU or Norwegian Covid certificate holders. 

This opens up the possibility for whole families to travel to Norway now rather than just individual health pass users. 

This means families travelling using EU and Norwegian health passes arriving from countries that require quarantine are not obligated to do so. This also means that children are also exempt from entry registration and testing before and on arrival in Norway if their parents have a valid EU or Norwegian health certificate. 

The rule applies both to children and step-children. 

EXPLAINED: Will Norway accept Covid-19 vaccine passes from the UK?

Before the rules change, one of the few ways an entire family could travel together to Norway was if they were travelling from a green country, a country with low enough infections that allowed safe quarantine free entry into Norway. You can read more about green countries here

This is because entry was admitted to arrivals from green countries, vaccine pass holders, and the close family and partners of Norwegian residents and citizens from within the EEA (European countries plus Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway), the UK or Norway’s purple list

However, before you book a trip to Norway with the intention of bringing children with you as a vaccine pass holder, it is also essential to check into the rules of the country you are returning to and what entry requirements will apply to you upon your return. 

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Covid face mask rule on flights in Europe set to be eased

The mandatory EU-wide mask requirement for air travel is set to be dropped from Monday, May 16th, but airlines may still require passengers to wear masks on some or all flights

Covid face mask rule on flights in Europe set to be eased

Europe-wide facemask rules on flights are set to be ditched as early as next week in light of new recommendations from health and air safety experts.

The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) dropped recommendations for mandatory mask-wearing in airports and during flights in updated Covid-19 safety measures for travel issued on Wednesday, May 11th.

The new rules are expected to be rolled out from Monday, May 16th, but airlines may still continue to require the wearing of masks on some or all of flights. And the updated health safety measures still say that wearing a face mask remains one of the best ways to protect against the transmission of the virus.

The joint EASA/ECDC statement reminded travellers that masks may still be required on flights to destinations in certain countries that still require the wearing of masks on public transport and in transport hubs.

It also recommends that vulnerable passengers should continue to wear a face mask regardless of the rules, ideally an FFP2/N95/KN95 type mask which offers a higher level of protection than a standard surgical mask.

“From next week, face masks will no longer need to be mandatory in air travel in all cases, broadly aligning with the changing requirements of national authorities across Europe for public transport,” EASA executive director Patrick Ky said in the statement. 

“For passengers and air crews, this is a big step forward in the normalisation of air travel. Passengers should however behave responsibly and respect the choices of others around them. And a passenger who is coughing and sneezing should strongly consider wearing a face mask, for the reassurance of those seated nearby.”  

ECDC director Andrea Ammon added: “The development and continuous updates to the Aviation Health Safety Protocol in light of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic have given travellers and aviation personnel better knowledge of the risks of transmission of SARS-CoV-2 and its variants. 

“While risks do remain, we have seen that non-pharmaceutical interventions and vaccines have allowed our lives to begin to return to normal. 

“While mandatory mask-wearing in all situations is no longer recommended, it is important to be mindful that together with physical distancing and good hand hygiene it is one of the best methods of reducing transmission. 

“The rules and requirements of departure and destination states should be respected and applied consistently, and travel operators should take care to inform passengers of any required measures in a timely manner.”