The European Council announced today that as of Wednesday 1 July 2020 the borders of the European Union will be reopened to visitors from 15 countries.
But the USA isn't one of them.
The initial list of countries from which the EU will receive visitors is:
- New Zealand
- South Korea
- China, provided it opens its borders to Europeans
Residents of these 4 tiny European states will also be welcome:
- San Marino
- The Vatican
Per the European Commission, those countries were selected on "health criteria" and great lengths were gone to to "appear apolitical."
Eligibility for entering the EU will be based on country of residence, not citizenship.
As usual, no organ of the EU itself can enforce restrictions on entry to the bloc - enforcement is left up to the individual member states.
For purposes of border-opening, the EU has chosen to consider the UK to still be part of the EU for the remainder of 2020 - a move motivated in part by the expectation of UK tourist spend in Spain and France this summer.
The list of "safe countries" will be reviewed every 2 weeks, and countries added or removed according to level of COVID-19 infection.
Exceptions to prohibited entry are made for health care workers, diplomats, humanitarian workers, transit passengers, asylum-seekers, students, essential foreign workers and persons traveling for "imperative family reasons".
Expect short booking windows for air travel into the EU this summer!