Travel restrictions due to the corona pandemic
Germany has introduced travel restrictions for entries from outside the Schengen area on March 17, 2020. All corresponding entries from non-EU-citizens and citizens of non-Schengen states by plane or ship will be affected.
- The travel restriction does not apply to German nationals.
- Family members of German nationals are exempted as well, if they return to their joint place of residence in Germany. In all other cases, family members of German citizens may only enter if they have a compelling reason (e.g. having to care for family members). Corresponding proof has to be presented when entering.
- Citizens of EU member states and their families, as well as citizens of the United Kingdom, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland and their families are allowed to travel through Germany to reach their home country if no other travel connection is possible. They will also be allowed to enter if their home or legal residence is in Germany.
- Persons who are not EU citizens who have a long-term right of residence (residence permit or long-term visa) in an EU member state or the United Kingdom, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland and their families are allowed to travel through Germany to reach their home country if no other travel connection is possible. The same applies to holders of a German residence permit or long-term visa whose home or legal residence is in Germany.
- Persons who are not EU citizens and who have no long-term right of residence are not allowed to enter unless they have an urgent reason to do so. Entry for purposes of tourism is no longer allowed.
- The principles of the European Commission's Communication of 16 March 2020 (COM(2020) 115 final) apply.
Frequently Asked Questions
Due to the coronavirus outbreak many countries have imposed travel restrictions or taken other steps to prevent the spread of Covid-19. Travelers can find useful and important information for trips to Germany here.
The travel warning issued by the German Federal Foreign Office is primarily aimed at tourists. However, early departure may also be recommended in the event of a long-term stay in the United States. Those who decide to stay have to accept the possibility of having to stay in the USA for a prolonged period of time.
Especially in the case of underage exchange students, we therefore advise you to weigh the possible risks of a further stay in the United States very carefully:
- The situation regarding the spread of the coronavirus is very serious in the United States. Some states have already imposed quarantines and travel restrictions; public life is severely restricted; schools and other educational institutions are widely closed. These measures are likely to be further extended in the coming weeks; a further increase in the number of cases is expected.
- Transatlantic air traffic is already severely restricted and further restrictions are to be expected. It cannot be ruled out that flights to Europe will be further reduced and that return travel will only be possible from very few places in the United States.
- The healthcare system in some U.S. states is already overstrained with the combat of the epidemic. It is likely that many hospitals will reach their capacity limits in the coming weeks. Opportunities for other health treatments, such as dental care, could also be limited as a result.
- It is urgent to review one's own overseas health insurance coverage to determine whether treatment of Covid-19 would be covered abroad or whether the insurance even contains an exclusion clause in the event of a pandemic.
- In the event that the educational institution is closed, either completely or to a high extent, for the rest of the intended stay, it must be considered whether the further stay under these serious circumstances is still worthwhile and reasonable.
- If exchange students in the United States fall ill, it is generally not possible for relatives from Germany to visit them under the entry regulations of the United States which are currently in force.
For questions concerning their visa in case of school closures or ended exchange programs, student (F, M) and Exchange (J) visa holders in the U.S. should be informed of and follow specific guidance from student offices and/or sponsor organizations. Student and Exchange visa holders in the U.S. and their guardians should also be informed of useful information on the following U.S. government websites: