1st June 2021
A landing ban comes into force and the UK is put on the list of variant virus areas. On Monday France introduced strict new measures. German has done the same and we look at the rules in the other main mountains countries of Europe and the potential impact on summer tourism to the mountains. NEW
The spread of the variant first identified in India, B.1.617.2, is causing concern.
In Austria the Ministry of Health has issued the new regulation and it has now come into force.
Only Austrian citizens and residents will be allowed to enter the country and they will require a negative PCR test.
Certain groups including humanitarian workers, people who have been summoned by the courts and those traveling to an international organisation on business.
We reported on the announcement earlier and it comes into force today, Tuesday June 1st.
Austria itself is planning to ease some coronavirus measures from June and July.
These include rules for wearing masks outdoors, numbers allowed at weddings and other events, eating out rules and curfews.
Discos and clubs are expected to re-open from 1st July.
Covid-19 cases are falling in Austria and the vaccine roll out continues.
It currently has 36 confirmed cases per 100,000 of population over a 7-day period.
Currently easyJet flights from London Gatwick to Innsbruck in the Tirol will not resume until 3rd August.
In the other alpine nations France has said non-EU nationals will not be able to travel to France unless they have “compelling reasons” to do so.
The restrictions apply to people from the UK.
People can ravel for these essential reasons and will need a PCR or antigen test less than 48-hours old.
People will also have to self-isolate for 7-days.
The rules apply to anyone arriving by air, car, ferry and train.
France currently has 93 confirmed cases per 100,000 of population over a 7-day period.
Switzerland added the UK to its list of high-risk countries on May 27th.
The Swiss Federal Office of Public Health said the UK has been added to the list of nations with a high incidence of Covid virus mutations due to the “worrying” variant first detected in India
Travellers from the UK must present a negative coronavirus test and quarantine on arrival in Switzerland, even if they are fully vaccinated.
It affects Swiss citizens and permanent residents returning to Switzerland.
Flights from the UK have not been banned.
It currently has 65 confirmed cases per 100,000 of population over a 7-day period.
Italy has not introduced any new restrictions on travellers from the UK.
People can go to Italy from the UK for nay reason but are required to show proof of a negative test.
It needs to be a PCR or antigen test and to have been taken in the previous 48-hours.
Italy currently has 39 confirmed cases per 100,000 of population over a 7-day period.
Aosta Valley, Italy. Image © PlanetSKI.Germany closed its borders to people from the UK last week.
Only German citizens or citizens resident in Germany can enter the country, and all people need to quarantine for 14-days even if they have tested negative.
The German Embassy in the UK said “to prevent the further spread of the virus, the United Kingdom has been classified as an area of variant of concern.”
It currently has 35 confirmed cases per 100,000 of population over a 7-day period.
Spain has lifted all restrictions on people arriving from the UK if they have a vaccine thus allowing access to the Pyrenees mountains.
There is no need to quarantine or present a negative PCR result.
Spain currently has 68 confirmed cases per 100,000 of population over a 7-day period.
The UK currently has 32 confirmed cases of Covid-19 per 100,000 of population over a 7-day period.
Andorra in the Pyrenees has one of the highest rates in Europe with 159 confirmed cases per 100,000 of population over a 7-day period.
The European Commission is proposing all EU countries should ease travel measures over the coming months.
It said that fully-vaccinated people should be exempt from testing and quarantines when travelling within the EU area.
It remains to be seen how this will affect travel with the UK that is now outside the EU.
It is hoped travel restrictions will ease if variants remain under control and the vaccine roll our continues.
Many of us are looking forward to summer in the mountains if and when the conditions allow.