Travelers from Outside Europe Don’t Have to Self-Quarantine when Arriving in Germany

BERLIN — A court in the German capital has ruled that travelers from outside Europe don’t automatically have to go into self-quarantine when arriving in Berlin, unless there are grounds to believe they may be infected with the new coronavirus.

Berlin state’s current pandemic restrictions had stipulated that travelers from outside the EU, the EFTA countries or Britain need to self-isolate for two weeks after landing in Berlin.

But the Berlin administrative court said Thursday that such a blanket rule was untenable, though persons who are infected or suspected of having COVID-19 can still be ordered into quarantine. It noted that the quarantine rule failed to discern between countries where the pandemic is at very different stages, such as New Zealand — which has contained the outbreak — and the United States, which currently has the highest number of recorded cases worldwide.

Separately, Foreign Minister Heiko Maas confirmed Thursday that Germany is lifting its travel warning for 29 European countries on June 15.

The warnings for Spain and Norway will be lifted later due to those countries’ own entry restrictions, and travel to Sweden is currently discouraged due to the high rate of infection there.


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