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Denmark to ease travel guidelines: Here’s how rules will change

Denmark to ease travel guidelines: Here’s how rules will change
A KLM aircraft taking off from Copenhagen Airport in January 2020. Photo: Mads Claus Rasmussen/Ritzau Scanpix
Authorities in Denmark are to ease national travel guidelines on Wednesday, but the foreign ministry will continue to advise against most trips outside of the country.

Travel to and from some countries will become easier under the relaxed rules, but many restrictions will remain tight.

All foreign travel is cautioned against by the ministry currently, with the entire world designated a ‘red’ zone due to risks associated with the Covid-19 pandemic.  

As such, the ministry advises against all foreign travel (not just non-essential travel). This means that business travel is not exempted from the advisory, although there are some exemptions, such as for transport of goods and special personal reasons.

Non-residents of Denmark who want to visit the country are required to fulfil a ‘valid reason’ criterion for entering if they enter from a ‘red’ country.

When guidelines change on Wednesday, April 21st, the advice to avoid all foreign travel will mostly switch to advice against non-essential travel.

Screenshot: coronasmitte.dk

That is because a regional model will be reintroduced (having previously been used last year), with travel advice split into three categories based on the infection situation in the areas in question.

The three categories are: yellow (‘be careful’); orange (‘avoid non-essential travel’) and red (‘avoid all travel’).

Iceland and some parts of Norway (the counties of Nordland, Trøndelag and Troms og Finnmark) are the only areas in the EU and Schengen area that will be ‘yellow’ at the current time.

Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, Singapore and Thailand also become ‘yellow’ on April 21st. The recommendations for so-called ‘third countries’ outside of the EU are based on the EU’s list of countries which can fulfil requirements for safe travel.

Travel from yellow countries to Denmark is exempted from the requirement to present a valid reason for travel (effectively allowing tourism from those countries), as well as from the quarantine requirement. Testing on arrival remains mandatory.

It should be noted that Denmark is still advising against non-essential travel from Denmark to Iceland and the Norwegian regions and to the worldwide ‘yellow’ countries, however. That is because all of those countries are still enforcing restrictions on travellers from Denmark. That advice will be eased if the local restrictions are eased.

Most of the world will be classified as ‘orange’ on Wednesday April 21st, the ministry confirmed on Monday. This means that the government will continue to advise against travel for leisure purposes, such as holidays. But business travel and travel to visit sick relatives will now be considered necessary forms of travel.

Although the list of valid reasons for entry has broadened a little, people travelling from these countries to Denmark will still be required to isolate and test for Covid-19 on arrival and before boarding flights.

The ministry will continue to advise against all travel to a number of red countries, due to high risk of infection combined with concerns over new variants of the coronavirus.

Those countries are Bangladesh, Botswana, Brazil, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe, as well as French island Réunion.

For these countries, only a very restricted list of exemptions provides a valid reason for entry to Denmark.

Official guidance on testing and isolation requirements, as well as on the valid reasons for entry from ‘orange’ and ‘red’ countries can be found in English here.

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