Germany is putting in place a temporary ban on all travellers arriving from the UK except from its own residents due to concerns over the spread of a Covid variant first discovered in India.
On Friday the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) classified the UK as a ‘virus variant area of concern‘ – Germany’s highest risk category. Arrivals who are allowed to enter Germany will have to self-isolate for two weeks even if they test negative for Covid-19.
The health agency had moved the UK to the ‘risk’ country category a week ago in response to outbreaks in some areas linked to the Indian variant. But due to Covid cases in the UK rising by more than 160 percent in a week, the RKI announced on Friday that Britain’s risk status was to increase.
From midnight on Sunday only German citizens or people with German residence permits will be allowed to enter the country when arriving from Britain.
As the UK is now classed as a “virus variant zone”, travellers entering Germany will have to be tested before departure for Germany and immediately enter a 14-day quarantine on arrival – even if they are fully vaccinated.
The ban does not apply to people on flight transfers through Germany who are not leaving the airport.
“There are local outbreaks occurring again, including cases of more infectious variants such as the Indian variant at present,” said German Embassy in the UK.
“Therefore, to prevent the further spread of the virus, the United Kingdom has been classified as an area of variant of concern with effect from 23 May 2021.
“A ban on transportation and entry into Germany therefore applies from 23 May.”