The list of countries that have dropped all COVID-19 pandemic-related travel restrictions continues to grow. Now you can add the Czech Republic to that list — and you’ll soon be able to add Switzerland as well.
Here’s what both countries’ recent announcements mean for travelers.
The Czech Republic
The Czech Republic’s government lifted all COVID-19 pandemic-related travel restrictions on April 9. As a result, travelers no longer need to complete an arrival form or submit proof of vaccination for COVID-19, or show proof of a previous infection to enter the Czech Republic.
“We are very happy all the travel restrictions have been lifted which aligns perfectly with the newly relaunched direct flights on Delta between New York City and Prague planned for the summer season,” Michaela Claudino, director of Czech Tourism USA & Canada, told TravelAwaits in a statement.
If you plan to travel to the Czech Republic, you’ll also be happy to know that there are no longer travel restrictions concerning movement, there no longer are curfews, and there aren’t any restrictions limiting the size of gatherings either, according to the Czech Republic’s Ministry of the Interior.
It’s also no longer necessary to provide proof of vaccination for COVID-19 or proof of recovery to enter restaurants, bars and cafés, sporting and cultural events, or even music, dance, games, and disco clubs. Furthermore, it’s no longer required to wear a mask or respirator in the Czech Republic, except while inside medical and social care facilities, public transportation, and taxis.
The travel restrictions currently in place in Switzerland will be lifted beginning May 2, according to the country’s State Secretariat for Migration. Until then, however, travelers will need to provide proof of vaccination for COVID-19 or proof of recovery to enter the country.
The requirement to provide proof of vaccination or recovery to enter bars, restaurants, and other indoor venues such as sports facilities, theaters, or concert halls, was lifted in February.
“Switzerland is taking a decisive and important step towards normality,” Ignazio Cassis, who holds the rotating Swiss presidency this year, said at the time, according to SwissInfo.
Then, all other pandemic-related restrictions were lifted in Switzerland on April 1, including the mask requirement for people using public transportation and the mandatory 5-day isolation period for anyone who tested positive for COVID-19.
“We can’t say that the crisis is over, but we can certainly say that the acute phase of the crisis is over,” Interior Minister Alain Berset said at the time, SwissInfo reports.
Know Before You Go
While the Czech Republic and Switzerland are fully welcoming tourists again, their COVID-19 vaccination levels and case counts should be noted.
First, 64 percent of the Czech Republic’s population is fully vaccinated for COVID-19, according to Johns Hopkins University of Medicine. In the past week, the government has reported 16,510 new cases of COVID-19. However, that number is down significantly from the 1-week record number of new cases, 245,135, which was reported for the week of January 31–February 6, 2022.
With that in mind, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has moved the Czech Republic to its list of Level 3 countries that have a high level of COVID-19.
Meanwhile, just under 70 percent of Switzerland’s population is fully vaccinated for COVID-19, according to Johns Hopkins’ data. And while Switzerland has reported 28,239 new cases of COVID-19 in the past week, that number is also down dramatically from the 251,758 cases reported for the week of January 24–30, 2022, which was the country’s 1-week record number of new cases.
The CDC has also moved Switzerland to its Level 3 list of countries with a high level of COVID-19.