The border with Austria could be opened to tourists by mid-June without the need for a negative COVID-19 test or quarantine.
“The Czech government is discussing a similar agreement with Slovakia,” said Foreign Minister Tomáš Petříček (ČSSD)on Tuesday after a video conference with the foreign ministers of both countries.
“With Austria, we have confirmed our interest in opening our borders to our citizens and for travel by mid-June, especially for tourists,” said Petříček.
“Borders with all neighbouring states – Poland, Germany, Austria and Slovakia – could be open by mid-June,” added Petříček.
Health Minister Adam Vojtech “had proposed that as of June 8, travel to and from a list of risky countries – to be determined but currently likely to include Spain, Italy or France – would be subject to the current requirements while others deemed safe – such as Austria, Slovakia or Croatia – would be exempt.”
Austria, Slovakia, and Croatia, for example, would be among the non-risk countries; Greece and Bulgaria should be also added to this list.
Vojtech said the list of risky countries would be updated continuously.
With Greece, the Czech Republic is negotiating a variant of traveling without the need for a negative COVID-19 test. According to Monday’s statement by Deputy Foreign Minister Martin Smolek, Greece could be open to Czech tourists from 1 July.
From May 26th it will be possible to cross the borders and return if you have a negative COVID test. The government will clarify which crossings will open later this week.
“The government has today agreed that the border regime will be relaxed from May 26th; it will be possible to cross at several border crossings and checks will only be random. With valid exceptions, the obligation to submit a negative test for COVID-19 when entering the Czech Republic will continue to apply,” said Interior Minister Jan Hamáček.
“Austria will open all borders with the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Hungary from midnight on Saturday, May 16,” said today the Austrian Ministry of the Interior.
The full opening of the borders is planned on June 15, the APA agency reported.
At the same time, Austria has struck the same border-opening agreement with Switzerland and Liechtenstein as the one it previously announced with Germany, to fully allow travel from June 15.
“Inspections by health authorities and the police will be less frequent and only random,” the ministry said in a statement.
“Our goal is to try to give as much freedom and as little restriction as possible. This is another small step towards normality, especially for people in border areas,” added the ministry.
- On May 12, the Swiss government announced it would reopen 15 border crossings with Austria, France, and Italy, in eight cantons, in its second phase of the partial easing of the COVID-19 temporary restrictions.
- The French Minister of Interior has agreed with his German counterpart Interior Minister Horst Seehofer to reopen the common borders by June 15, which restrictions have been put in place in a bid to contain the flow of the COVID-19.
- Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia have decided to open their common borders so their citizens can freely move between the three, as of May 15. The Baltic states have decided to abolish an entry ban for non-essential purposes as they assert that the situation regarding the Coronavirus pandemic and the level of infections is similar in all three, while at the same time abolishing a requirement of two weeks quarantine for travelers.