Eastern Europe is fast becoming a popular place for British holidaymakers, offering incredible city breaks for those with interests in history and architecture.
The countries are steeped in history and offer amazing views – often at much cheaper prices.
Although summer might be coming to an end, many of us still have trips booked. But with coronavirus restrictions expected to get tighter, it leads us to wonder what the rules are in other countries, and what we have to do when arriving back home.
Many European destinations are on the UK quarantine list – this means you must isolate for 14 days when entering the UK from one of these countries.
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Luckily, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), is constantly updating us on all the latest restrictions.
Here is everything you need to know about holidays to Poland, Romania, and other places in Eastern Europe.
Since July 4, Poland has been added to the UK’s travel corridor list which means you don’t need to quarantine when coming back to the UK.
Here’s what the FCO say about entering Poland:
- You are not required to self-isolate on arrival in Poland if you are a UK, European Union or EFTA national unless you have coronavirus symptoms or you have come into contact with someone who has.
- Krakow has been declared a city with a relatively larger number of coronavirus cases stricter sanitary measures are therefore in place.
Unlike Poland, Romania is not exempt from the quarantine.
The FCO is advising against all but essential travel to the country, and you must isolate for 14 days when you come back to the UK.
However British nationals are not required to isolate upon arrival in Romania.
Bulgaria is also not exempt from the quarantine rules – however, arrivals to Bulgaria from the UK are not required to self-isolate on arrival.
You may be subject to quarantine measures if arriving from or via another country.
The Czech Republic, and its capital Prague, is an increasingly popular destination for British tourists.
However, the FCO advises against all but essential travel to the Czech Republic. This is based on the current assessment of Covid-19 risks.
These are the entry requirements for those going to the Czech Republic:
There are currently no restrictions in place on entering the Czech Republic if you are travelling from the UK
If you are travelling from a country not considered to be low risk by the Czech government, you are only allowed to enter the Czech Republic for limited, specific purposes
Once again, Hungary is on the UK quarantine list.
The FCO has also advised of entry requirements when arriving in Hungary:
- Most UK nationals are not allowed to enter Hungary. Residents may enter if they hold a permanent residence permit or a permit allowing them to stay in Hungary for at least 90 days, and can present their documents to the authorities at the border. UK nationals travelling with a family member who is a Hungarian citizen or resident should also be allowed entry.
- UK nationals may also enter Hungary to attend sporting or cultural events, carry out business activity or for the purposes of transit. Otherwise, entry is limited to narrow circumstances, such as operating cargo transport or travelling on a diplomatic or official passport.
- It is also possible to apply – before travelling – for an exemption to enter Hungary in a further set of specific circumstances, such as attending a funeral.
Since July 20, travellers from the UK are not subject to restrictions when entering Slovakia.
It’s also not on the UK quarantine list so you don’t need to isolate when returning.
However, Slovenia is subject to a UK quarantine when you return as of 4am on Saturday, September 19.
The FCO is advising against all but essential travel to the country.
Since July 17, travellers from the UK are no longer be subject to quarantine on arrival to Slovenia.
Health checks may be conducted at all border entry points. If you display signs of coronavirus infections you will be refused entry, unless you hold a permanent residence permit for Slovenia.
Since July 4, Lithuania is exempt from the quarantine rule.
However, there are several entry requirements when arriving in Lithuania from the UK:
- British nationals resident in the UK travelling to Lithuania will need to self-isolate for 14 days on arrival
- You will need to present proof of a negative Covid-19 test carried out within 72 hours before your arrival in Lithuania
- Individuals travelling to Lithuania need to complete a registration form prior to arrival.
Latvia is also on the travel corridor list.
Here are the rules for when you arrive in Latvia from the UK:
- From September 17, asymptomatic travellers arriving in Latvia from the UK are required to self-isolate for 10 days
- Since July 16, all passengers are required on arrival to complete and hand to their transport provider a contact form giving contact details, listing the countries visited in the previous 14 days, and undertaking to comply with the epidemiological security measures established in Latvia
Estonia is also one of the countries marked ‘Covid-secure’ by the UK government, so no quarantine is needed when you come home.
But, it’s not all plain sailing as you will need to self-isolate for 14 days when arriving in the Eastern European country.
Since September 1, you have the option of taking a test to reduce your self-isolation period. This option is not available for children.