The borders between Austria, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Hungary could open completely in mid-June.
Following a video conference, Austrian Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg added that the four prime ministers could soon take a final decision.
“We are returning to normal and this also applies to tourism. Our goal is to open the borders between the Czech Republic, Austria, and Slovakia by mid-June, moreover, without the need to submit negative tests or quarantine,” Foreign Minister Tomas Petricek said.
Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis said he would like to see the country’s borders all open on June 15.
Austria has already started to relax systematic controls at its common border with Slovakia, as the number of infections in both countries has dropped, and the situation seems to be improving.
Besides Slovakia, Austria also has abolished internal border controls with the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Liechtenstein, and Switzerland, which controls have been imposed in a bid to stop the further spread of the Coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19).
“Factors to be considered when phasing out border restrictions include the protection of human life and health, economic and trade relations, the re-establishment of links between communities living along the borders and a return to normalcy,” said Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó.
“Starting Monday, citizens of Hungary and Serbia will be allowed to travel between the two countries without undergoing a mandatory quarantine upon entry,” he added.
Passenger traffic at Prague Airport is slowly coming back.
In April, the airport saw an unprecedented drop in traffic of 99.6 percent, handling 5031 passengers. At the end of the month, there were only two regular lines, to Minsk and Sofia.
In May, however, the situation is starting to change. At the beginning of the month, KLM started daily flights to Amsterdam, as well as the direct Eurowings flight to Düsseldorf.
Czech Airlines is currently flying to Paris, Amsterdam and Frankfurt am Main. Air travel to and from Stockholm is set to be reinstated from May 21 and to Bucharest from May 25.
The carries plans to resume operation on its lines to Kiev and Odessa later in May, provided mandatory quarantine restrictions are terminated in Ukraine by then.
Lufthansa, Air France, and Finnair are resuming flights
In June, other airlines should gradually increase their connections. The flight to Frankfurt starting from June 1 has already been announced by Lufthansa.
Air France will start flying from Prague to Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport from June 3. Initially, it will fly twice a week, increasing to four flights a week by the end of June. From July, the Finnish carrier Finnair plans to renew the flight to Helsinki.
Last year, Prague Airport handled a record 17.8 million passengers.
As far as tourists are concerned, it is not yet completely clear when the Czech Republic will start opening up. Foreign Minister Tomáš Petříček said that this is likely to happen in July, provided that visitors show some sort of test.