Romania to Enforce New Travel Measures Amid Omicron

Romania updates its travel measures for international arrivals while relaxing some internal restrictions. International travelers must check certain entry requirements before a trip as they may differ according to nationality.

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The Romanian government has implemented new travel restrictions for travelers due to the health care crisis caused by the emergence of the new formidable coronavirus variant, Omicron. The new measures were introduced on 10th December 2021 and will remain effective until 8th January 2021.

Coronavirus situation in Romania

Romania faced the worst period during the entire pandemic through the last 2 months. So far, the country has recorded a few cases of newly detected Omicron variant, which is said to be more contagious than the previously detected COVID-19 variants. All Omicron cases in Romania were related to the people flying from South African countries to the capital city of Romania, Bucharest, at the end of the previous month. 

Romania expects a fifth wave of coronavirus pandemic soon. According to Zaharia, one of the primary care doctors at Bucharest?s Marius Nasta Institute of Pneumology, it is extremely hard to achieve the equilibrium between keeping restrictions and simultaneously giving people freedom.  However, without loosening the limitations, the Romanian population could be even less obedient with following future restrictions.  

Romania with a population of about 20 million people has so far recorded over 7.7 mln coronavirus cases with over 57,000 covid-caused deaths. About 39% of the Romanian population have received the full COVID-19 vaccine.

The introduction of the stricter rules is aimed at minimizing coronavirus transmission over the winter holiday time. 

Entering Romania from EU or Schengen Area member countries

Entry rules can vary depending on the country of departure. Romania has introduced its own risk area classification dividing the countries into green, yellow and red.

EU Digital COVID Certificate

Arrivals from green and yellow areas are allowed to enter Romania if they are holders of the EU Digital Covid Certificate containing the following items:

  • full vaccination proof (the vaccine must have been administered at least 10 days before the planned trip)
  • COVID-19 recovery proof (valid for 6 months)
  • negative coronavirus test result (valid for 72 hours)

Travelers holding EUDCC coming from red countries can enter the Romanian territory only with a vaccination or recovery certificate. Negative pre-departure test results are only acceptable in the case of minors between 12 and 16. 

Travelers not holding EUDCC

Passengers from green and yellow areas not holding EUDCC can enter Romania on the same terms as those who hold the certificate. However, if they are unable to provide any of the required three documents (vaccination proof, recovery certificate, or negative test), they will be subject to a 14-day quarantine. 

For travelers without EUDCC departing from red areas, the rules are the same as for those who are holders of digital certificates. If unable to submit at least one of the required documents, they will need to undergo a 2-week quarantine too. 

The quarantine period can be shortened to 10 days if a traveler provides a negative pre-departure PCR test result taken within 72 hours of a trip. 

Quarantine exception

  • children under 12 years of age
  • travelers only transiting through Romania (up to 24 hours)
  • cross-border workers entering Romania from Bulgaria or Hungary
  • Romanian citizens, residents, students (holding a negative PCR test result taken within 72 hours of entry
  • travelers staying in Romania for not longer than 72 hours
  • diplomats, drivers, sport delegation members, etc. 

List of countries banned from entering Romania

Romania forbids entry from any of the following countries:

  • Botswana
  • Angola
  • Zimbabwe
  • Zambia
  • South Africa
  • Namibia
  • Malawi
  • Mozambique
  • Lesotho
  • Eswatini

This ban does not apply only to the travelers from EU countries or Schengen Area who must take a molecular test upon arrival in Romania, undergo quarantine and perform another post-arrival 8th-day molecular test. The quarantine may end on the 10th day if the second test shows a negative result. 

Rules for travelers outside EU or Schengen Area

All arrivals outside the EU or Schengen Area are required to provide a negative PCR test result taken within 48 hours before the trip and additionally, they need to submit either  avaccination certificate (confirming receiving the last dose at least 10 days before the trip) or recovery proof (valid for 180 days).

Those who have only the negative test result are subject to a 10-day quarantine. Being unable to provide neither negative test, vaccination proof nor recovery certificate means the necessary quarantine for 14 days.

Internal Romanian restrictions

While the Romanian authorities have implemented new travel restrictions with the hope to reduce the number of coronavirus cases, some restrictions within the country have been relaxed.

Public places like cafes, shopping malls, restaurants can now remain open until 10 p.m. (one hour later than it used to be). Moreover, it is no longer necessary to hold a green certificate to access them, a negative coronavirus test is enough. It is no longer required to cover the face with a mask when in uncrowded open public areas and during key winter holidays like Christmas Eve or New Year?s Eve. 

Loosening internal measures is to give the people impression of normal living in Romania. However, if the infection rate keeps rising rapidly, the measures will need to be maintained or even tightened.

Romania e-Visa

The majority of the travelers (104 nationalities) coming to Romania from non-visa-free countries can apply for an electronic visa. The Romania e-Visa is issued as a multiple-entry authorization that enables visiting the country for business, tourism, or transit-related activities

Holder of an electronic visa can spend up to 90 days exploring Romanian touristic attractions or handling business affairs, or 5 days when transiting to another final destination. The e-Visa remains valid for 6 months from its date of issue.

Katarzyna Żyła

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