Health

12 travel destinations you could visit more easily if you’re vaccinated

Summary List PlacementIceland was the first county in the EU to open up to fully vaccinated travelers from the US and UK. As Insider's Thomas Pallini previously reported, Iceland opened up to fully vaccinated travelers on March 18. It was the first country in the European Union to open to US and UK residents, and all that's needed for proof of vaccination is a paper vaccination card. The vaccination card will allow visitors from anywhere in the world to skip COVID-19 testing and quarantine measures upon arrival, the Prime Minister of Iceland said in a statement. However, some health experts have previously told Insider...

Caucasian Woman waring Face Mask on the Station; Slovenia on the border with Italy, Europe.

Summary List Placement

Iceland was the first county in the EU to open up to fully vaccinated travelers from the US and UK.

As Insider’s Thomas Pallini previously reported, Iceland opened up to fully vaccinated travelers on March 18.

It was the first country in the European Union to open to US and UK residents, and all that’s needed for proof of vaccination is a paper vaccination card.

The vaccination card will allow visitors from anywhere in the world to skip COVID-19 testing and quarantine measures upon arrival, the Prime Minister of Iceland said in a statement.

However, some health experts have previously told Insider that it’s smart to still get tested prior to traveling and after arriving at your destination. 

The vaccine must be certified for use by the European Medicines Agency, which includes the Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson vaccines.

Certain vaccinated groups can enter Poland and bypass the otherwise mandatory quarantine.

Poland is welcoming vaccinated visitors from specific groups: Polish citizens, residents, their family members, essential workers, students, and EU citizens and residents, according to Poland’s coronavirus website.

If you fall into one of these categories and are fully vaccinated, you can skip the 10-day quarantine.

If you’re not vaccinated, you can bring proof of a negative coronavirus test taken within 48 hours of arrival to bypass the quarantine requirement.  

However, incoming visitors shouldn’t expect to travel or explore the country.

Currently, museums, theaters, cultural centers, night clubs are currently shuttered and tourism is highly discouraged, according to Poland’s coronavirus website.

The Seychelles islands opened up to vaccinated travelers at the beginning of the year.

The Seychelles islands were one of the first destinations to announce vaccinated travelers were welcome.

On January 14, 2021, the country announced that tourists — regardless of where they were traveling from — can enter the island nation if they had proof of receiving a vaccination at least two weeks prior to arrival.

All visitors, whether vaccinated or unvaccinated, still need to have a negative COVID PCR test taken within 72 hours of travel and have a valid Health Travel Authorization, according to the Seychelles Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Tourism.

Unvaccinated and vaccinated travelers will not need to quarantine.

“However, they are being strongly encouraged to be fully immunized before travel,” according to Seychelles Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Tourism.

If families are embarking to Seychelles, children do not need to be vaccinated, but they, too, will need to have a negative test

Tourists are required to follow public health measures and should expect to wear a mask and social distance throughout their visit.

Tourism is still discouraged in Slovenia, but vaccinated visitors can skip the quarantine.

Slovenia is discouraging tourism at this time, but for incoming vaccinated visitors, there is no need to quarantine “provided that they are entering Slovenia for urgent purposes (and not for tourist or non-urgent family visits),” per the Republic of Slovenia.

The central European country is operating on a list basis, which means that countries on Slovenia’s red list are required to quarantine for 10 days unless they bring proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test.

Travelers not on the list, including the US, “may enter the Republic of Slovenia without being put under home quarantine and without submitting a negative test for the presence of SARS-CoV-2,” per the Republic of Slovenia.

For travelers coming from the US, there isn’t a requirement for proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test.

However, restrictions on non-essential travel are in place and tourist accommodation facilities in Slovenia are currently closed, according to the Republic of Slovenia.

Guatemala announced that vaccinated visitors were welcome starting February 24.

According to the US Embassy in Guatemala, visitors can enter and exit the Central American country freely if they have either a COVID-19 passport or proof that their vaccination occurred a minimum of two weeks prior to arrival. 

For unvaccinated visitors, they must either bring a negative COVID-19 test taken with 72 hours of arrival or proof of recovery from the coronavirus within three months of arrival. 

All incoming visitors must also complete a health pass, which can be found here. However, people who visited the United Kingdom or South Africa 14 days before arrival may be denied entry or required to quarantine, per the US Embassy in Guatemala.

At the time of writing, masks are required in public. There are limited commercial flights to the country and travel within Guatemala is permitted. 

Vaccinated travelers can enter Ecuador as of March 22.

Vaccinated visitors won’t have to quarantine or take tests before or after arriving in Ecuador as long as they can can present their vaccine certificate and pass a symptom screening at the airport, per the country’s new visitor guidelines.

These entry procedures extend to travelers who can present a negative result from a COVID-19 test (PCR or antigen) taken up to three days prior to arrival and travelers who have recovered from COVID-19.

Any traveler displaying symptoms of COVID-19 upon arrival will be asked to take a rapid antigen test. If the test comes back positive, they must isolate for 10 days at their own expense; otherwise they are free to explore the country while adhering to safety protocols like social distancing, wearing masks in public, and limiting social gatherings to 10 people.

Travelers under the age of 2 are exempt from requirements.

In March, Belize became the first Caribbean country to welcome vaccinated travelers.

Travelers who have been fully vaccinated for at least two week prior to visiting Belize will not need to present a negative COVID-19 test upon arrival.

Those who have been partially vaccinated or not vaccinated at all must present a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 96 hours before travel, or a negative rapid antigen test taken at most 48 hours before travel, upon arrival. If no test is presented, travelers will be required to take a $50 test at the airport.

Childen age 5 and under are exempt from requirements.

All travelers must download and complete the Belize Health App within 72 hours of arrival. They also must book their accommodations at a Belize “Golden Standard Hotel,” which is a hotel that has instituted COVID-19 safety procedures. This is part of the country’s Tourism Gold Standard program that directs tourists to COVID-safe hotels, restaurants, tour operators, and businesses.

Belize currently has no travel bans in place.

Vaccinated travelers from select countries can skip Estonia’s mandatory 10-day visitor quarantine.

Estonia is currently open to tourism from the European Union, European Economic Area, and the Schengen Area, as well as six other countries around the world, not including the United States.

Visitors from the approved list of countries who have been vaccinated within six months prior to arrival can by bypass Estonia’s mandatory 10-day quarantine and testing requirements if they present a vaccine certificate in English, Russian, or Estonian, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Estonia only recognizes vaccine certificates produced in English, Russian, or Estonian.

Visitors who have recovered from COVID-19 in the past six months, and present a doctor’s note indicating that they are free of COVID-19, can also bypass the mandatory quarantine.

All other travelers must present a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours of arrival and submit to a mandatory 10-day quarantine. Visitors from EU, EEA, and Schengen Area countries deemed “low risk” are allowed to bypass the quarantine requirements, and travelers who receive two negative PCR tests within six days of each other may be able to shorten their quarantine.

Georgia is open to vaccinated travelers from any country.

Fully vaccinated travelers from all countries are allowed to visit Georgia and bypass COVID-19 testing requirements as of February 1, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The country currently has testing requirements in place for unvaccinated travelers from select countries deemed “high risk,” including the US. Travelers from these countries will need to present a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken with 72 hours before travel, fill out a health declaration form prior to arrival, then take another PCR test three days into their trip.

Any unvaccinated traveler who has traveled to the UK within two weeks of arrival will be subject to a 12-day quarantine.

Vaccinated travelers should be able to visit Greece beginning mid-May.

On March 9, Greece’s Tourism Minister Harry Theocharis announced that vaccinated travelers will be able to visit the European country this summer. 

Those who aren’t vaccinated will be required to bring a negative COVID test or show proof of antibodies. 

The goal is to be reopened by mid-May, according to Reuters.

“Greece is ready with a complete protocol for summer 2021,” Theocharis previously stated. “Tourists will be welcome if before travel they are either vaccinated, or have antibodies, or test negative. All tourists will be subject to random testing.”

Cyprus officials are working on a plan to welcome vaccinated visitors later this year.

Although it’s not official yet, The Guardian reported that Cyprus officials are working on a plan that would let vaccinated visitors from places like the UK skip the mandatory quarantine and testing. 

Until the plan is released, “the same travel procedures will apply as for non-vaccinated persons,” the government’s COVID-19 protocol states.

Currently, different protocols are in place depending on the country visitors are arriving from. You can find the regulations here and the list of color-coded countries here.

For travelers arriving from the US, a PCR COVID test is required both prior to and at the arrival of Cyprus. Visitors also must complete a Cyprus Flight Pass. US visitors are not required to quarantine.

Hawaii hopes to roll out a passport program for vaccinated travelers later this spring.

Lieutenant Governor Josh Green has announced plans to roll out a vaccine passport program for travel into and out of the island state that would waive entry requirements.

The program is slated to begin sometime in April or May for inter-island travel, and potentially in May or June for trans-Pacific travel, according to Hawaii Guide. 

Currently, visitors to Hawaii must present a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours prior to arrival, or self-quarantine for 10 days.

Green is looking to partner with local company First Vitals to develop a mobile app for the program, khon2 reported on March 30. The app would help verify that a traveler has been fully vaccinated for at least two weeks before arrival, and generate a QR code to use upon entry.

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