Travelling to Germany from the UK? Here’s what to know about new entry rules

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Germany has been a constant presence on the UK’s ‘travel corridor’ list since it was first published in July, meaning Brits have been able to holiday there without having to self-isolate on either side.

But in a potential hindrance to winter breaks in the home of Christmas markets, Germany has now classed the UK as an “increased risk” country and placed extra restrictions on entry. We break down what you need to know if you have a trip booked or were planning one.

Germany’s new entry rules

If you are arriving in Germany from anywhere in the UK (except the Isle of Man, Guernsey and Jersey), you must now take a Covid-19 PCR test before you travel to Germany, and notify the local health authorities of where you will be staying, your contact details and travel route.

There are two main options for testing. You can:

  • Arrange to take a test in the UK before you travel. The test must be taken no more than 48 hours before you travel; be an antigen, not an antibody test (which is administered via a nasal or throat swab); and provide you with a dated certificate at the end. Note that it must be paid for privately, not arranged through the NHS, and may cost up to £150.
  • Take a test at the airport you arrive in. Several German airports have free testing centres, including Berlin Schönefeld (which is being incorporated into the new, bigger Berlin Brandenburg Airport on October 31st), Munich and Frankfurt. You need to check how long the results are likely to take to come through; if you’re not able to wait for them at the airport, you will need to self-isolate at your accommodation until they are available.

Tests are not compulsory, but people who do not present a test on arrival and refuse to take one will be fined.

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What happens next depends on where you are visiting. In most places, including Berlin and Munich, possession of a negative Covid-19 test means you do not have to quarantine at home for 14 days. You must keep your negative certificate with you for the duration of your trip, as it may be required by officials or in hotels.

UK’s rules on return

For now, Germany is still on the travel corridor list, so you do not have to self-isolate when you get home. However, the list is revised every week, with announcements usually made on a Thursday at 5pm.

You can check the latest rules for Germany here.

Are you planning a trip to Germany? Let us know in the comments.

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