As the world decreases COVID-19 restrictions following the Omicron surge, Norway is the latest country to drop restrictions for American tourists.
Norway will officially drop quarantine for unvaccinated Americans from January 26, making Norway a fantastic winter destination for all Americans.
The Norwegian Minister of Health and Care Services, Ingvild Kjerkol, said: “I agree with the Norwegian Institute of Public Health that in light of the low proportion of confirmed cases of COVID-19 among arriving travelers without a COVID-19 certificate, compared with the current status of the pandemic in Norway, the time has come to change the travel quarantine requirement,”
The New Entry Requirements
Previously, all Americans had to undergo mandatory quarantine if they were unvaccinated or couldn’t prove they’ve recovered from COVID-19.
The Norwegian Government said, “At present, people who arrive in Norway from an area that triggers a duty to quarantine and cannot produce a valid COVID-19 certificate showing that they are fully vaccinated or have recovered from COVID-19 must complete travel quarantine,”
This policy ends today.
The decision comes after the Norwegian Institute of Public Health recommends the Norwegian Government should scrap quarantine for Americans.
However, the Norwegian Government said, “Travelers still need to get tested and complete entry registration upon arrival in Norway,”
“The requirement of documentation of a negative test taken before arrival continues to apply to people who cannot produce a COVID-19 certificate showing that they are fully vaccinated or have recovered from COVID-19.”
Registration And Testing On Arrival
- All travelers visiting Norway must complete this entry registration form if they’re aged 16 and over. They must complete this within 72 hours before arriving in Norway
- All travelers—regardless of their vaccination status—must take a COVID-19 test on arrival. If there are no testing sites on arrival, travelers must complete their COVID-19 test within 24 hours of arrival. Tests on arrival are free, and travelers can find testing sites at most major points of entry.
- Travelers who don’t possess a valid COVID-19 vaccine certificate must take a test no more than 24 hours prior to arriving in Norway.
- Norway doesn’t require children to take a test before arrival, but they need to take a test on arrival.
But What If I Test Positive?
Suppose test positive for COVID-19 is worrying you? You’re not alone. If you test positive on arrival, you must go into self-isolation immediately.
If you’re a close contact with someone who’s tested positive, Norway may require you to quarantine or you’ll need to test yourself regularly over time to avoid quarantine. You can read more about Norway’s quarantine rules here.
The COVID-19 Situation In Norway
Norway is witnessing a sharp rise in COVID-19 cases because of the Omicron variant. The current 7-day case average is 18,111; that’s a sharp rise from the 7-day case average of 400 in October.
However, Norway’s current vaccination rate is 73.9%, with over 3.98 million citizens fully vaccinated.
The Current COVID-19 Restrictions Within Norway
Although Norway has restrictions within the country, the restrictions are less than many other European nations. Norway removed all restrictions in September, but they reinstated the following restrictions because of Omicron:
- Travelers must wear a face mask when traveling by taxi, public transport, shopping centers, and indoor station areas. However, the mask rule doesn’t apply to children under 12.
- Norway banned the sale of alcohol in bars and restaurants in December, but they’ve now removed it.
- The Norwegian government recommends social distancing and has introduced a 10 person limit on household gatherings.
So what should tourists do in Norway during the winter?
Torunn Tronsvang, CEO and Founder of Up Norway, one of Conde Nast Traveler’s 2021 Top Travel Specialists, has some suggestions.
In the winter, Up Norway recommends visiting Svalbard, Lofoten, and Alta or partaking in a ski and sail journey in the Sunnmøre Alps. For families, its Frozen-inspired journey is a highlight kids will remember for a lifetime. Some other of Up Norway’s private experiences include: fairytale whale and fjord cruise, dog sledding, guided northern lights hunt, snowmobiling tours, art walks, or even a micro-retreat in the wilderness, like Pan Treetop Cabins.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com