Following a European trend of relaxing entry requirements for incoming foreigners, Romania is the latest in the European Union (EU) to remove all internal Covid restrictions while also relaxing measures at the border. As reported by local media, holding an active ‘Green Pass‘ will no longer be a prerequisite for entering the country.
The Eastern European nation is becoming an increasingly popular destination lately, with millions headed to Transylvania every year to visit medieval citadels, UNESCO-listed fortified churches, and fairytale castles. It is also famous for being the homeland of Vlad the Impaler, one of the main inspirations behind the myth of Count Dracula.
What Is Changing At Romanian Borders As Of This Week
With the lifting of the Green Pass requirement, entry into Romania has just got a lot easier. As stated on March 9 by Dan Cărbunaru, a government spokesman, holding valid Covid documentation upon crossing the state border will no longer be a requirement for foreign visitors, including American tourists.
Specifically, those who travel to Romania, and who are not in possession of either an updated vaccination certificate, as established by the European Union, a negative test, or a recovery letter attesting to a recent infection are no longer subject to additional restrictions, including the need to quarantine.
The new simplified entry guidelines were enacted on March 9, 2022, on the same day Romania lifted its two-year-long State of Alert. Prior to that date, non-immunized individuals were still allowed to enter but were required to isolate for five days at their preferred address, unless presenting a negative PCR test dated no earlier than 72 hours.
Entering Romania After March 9, 2022:
- No pre-flight test
- No on-arrival or after-arrival test
- No proof of vaccination
- No quarantines
- No countries are banned due to varients or case numbers
Travelers, no matter which country they are coming from or their vaccination status, are now welcome to enter Romania under pre-pandemic rules.
Now, the Green Pass has been officially abolished, meaning all categories of travelers, vaccinated or unvaccinated (without holding a negative test), will be treated the same. While Cărbunaru maintains that completing the Passenger Locator Form (PLF) is still mandatory, “testing will not be included among the conditions that those who enter Romania will have to meet in order to avoid quarantine.”
As for the PLF, it will continue being enforced until the GEO 129/2021 normative act is repealed. The form can be accessed via this link, and non-compliance may result in hefty fines of up to USD 669.57. As reported by HotNews Romania, travelers will now be able to submit their information up to 72 hours before entering the country, as opposed to the previous 24 hours. The PLF does not ask any Covid-related questions.
What Is Changing Inside Romania As The State Of Alert Is Lifted
Besides the relaxation of its once-strict border management, Romania also seems to be shifting its Covid strategy from a more confrontational approach to one where living with the disease is accepted as a reality. This means there will no longer be any regulations aimed at curbing its spread, as the nation returns to a pre-pandemic level of normality.
As listed by local news outlet Antena 3, these are the main changes travelers can expect inside Romania as the State of Alert is lifted:
- The wearing of facial coverings will no longer be mandatory either outdoors or indoors
- Vaccine certificates or other valid Green Passes are no longer required for accessing public institutions, bars and clubs, restaurants, shopping centers, cultural venues, museums, etc
- Indoor events, concerts, demonstrations, and rallies can now happen without any epidemiological restrictions
- The hospitality sector will no longer need to observe a nightly curfew
- All border crossing points that had been temporarily or totally closed while the country was under the State of Alert can now reopen
In removing virtually all of its Covid restrictions and opening the doors for the unvaccinated to visit without any restrictions, Romania aligns itself with some of its European partners, which have been moving away from strict travel rules lately. Similarly to Romania, Hungary, Ireland, and Norway have all removed their Covid entry requirements recently.
Now The Omicron Is No Longer An Impediment, Could The War In Ukraine Affect Travel In Europe?
As the Omicron wave recedes and Europe lowers its guard, there may be other concerns for Americans visiting the Old Continent that are not strictly health-related.
Recently, the Russian invasion of Ukraine has brought war back to Europe’s shores, and as one of Ukraine’s neighbors, Romania is also being affected by the wave of refugees and heightened tensions in the region.
In fact, travel to Eastern Europe, in general, could come with its own set of challenges soon enough, as Cold War-era travel bans are enacted and the West seals itself off to discourage further Russian aggression, especially along the Eastern NATO border.
When visiting Romania or other Eastern European destinations, Americans should follow official CDC guidance and keep up to date with the relevant news.
Traveler Alert: Don’t Forget Travel Insurance For Your Next Trip!
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com