Council adopts new recommendation on COVID-19 travel measures (it will enter into force on 1 February 2022)
On 25 January 2022, the Council adopted a new recommendation on a coordinated approach to facilitate safe free movement during the COVID-19 pandemic. This recommendation is in response to the significant increase in vaccine uptake and the rapid roll-out of the EU digital COVID certificate. It replaces the previous recommendation (2020/1475).
Under the new recommendation, COVID-19 measures should be applied taking into account the person’s health status rather than the epidemiological situation at regional level, with the exception of areas where the virus is circulating at very high levels (dark red areas). This means that a traveller’s EU digital COVID certificate should be the key determinant.
It will enter into force on 1 February 2022, on the same day as a delegated act amending the digital COVID-19 certificate regulation and providing for an acceptance period of 270 days for vaccination certificates.
Under the new recommendation, COVID-19 measures should be applied taking into account the status of the person instead of the situation at regional level, with the exception of areas where the virus is circulating at very high levels.
This means that a traveller’s COVID-19 vaccination, test or recovery status, as evidenced by a valid EU digital COVID certificate, should be the key determinant. A person-based approach will substantially simplify the applicable rules and will provide additional clarity and predictability to travellers.