On Wednesday June 16th, the EU block agreed to expand the approved travel list to include North Macedonia, Serbia, Albania, Taiwan, Lebanon and the US. Some of the countries already in the list are: Australia, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, Rwanda, South Korea, Singapore, Thailand, Hong Kong and Macao.
Last May, the EU Commission announced that it planned to expand the approved travel list to non-EU countries, which would allow citizens from countries with a low enough incidence rate to travel to Europe. This would apply to all individuals whether they are vaccinated or not.
According to Politico, EU governments should be gradually lifting restrictions on non-essential travel from those countries, but can still impose certain conditions such as quarantines or PCR tests. Some countries such as France and Greece have already lifted restrictions on US travelers.
There are, however, some concerns on the table. Vaccination rates and the emergence of new variants will continue to be examined when deciding whether a country is added to the list or not.
On June 14th, the Presidents of the three EU institutions, the European Parliament, the Council of the EU and the European Commission attended the official signing ceremony for the Regulation on the EU Digital Covid Certificate, marking the end of the legislative process. With this initiative, the EU is hoping to restore confidence in travel and restart the beleaguered tourism sector. The EU Digital Covid Certificate will start being accepted as of July 1 and will verify individuals’ vaccinations, tests results, or potential immunity from a previous infection.