The EU’s new coronavirus ‘passport’ comes into effect on 1 July
It is hoped the European Digital Green Certificate will help reactivate international tourism this summer and the goal is to attract 14 to 15.5 million international holidaymakers to Spain this year.
The free Digital Green Certificate or Covid ‘passport’ – as it is popularly known – is the tool with which Europe in general and Spain, in particular, intend to reactivate international tourism this summer.
It is a document agreed and issued by the 27 EU countries that certify that the tourist is not infected with coronavirus and it is and hoped that it will, little by little, help return the numbers of travelers to pre-pandemic figures.
As of 1 July, when it comes into force, this certificate will guarantee that the tourist is healthy because they are fully vaccinated against the disease, has antibodies because they have recovered from Covid-19 or because they have a negative PCR test that was done 72 hours before arrival. Passengers will have to present this certificate, accessed through QR code on their phone or printed on paper, at the arrival airport to allow them to enter more easily.
The European Commission says that people who have completed their vaccination schedule 14 days before the trip and those who have had the disease in the last six months are exempt from having to present a PCR or antigen test upon arrival at the destination. The exception from recent PCR tests also includes those who have only one dose of the vaccine but have recovered from Covid and all this information can be accessed via the QR code. In the case of not meeting these requirements, tourists will have to present a negative test carried out at most 72 hours before the trip (48 hours in case of antigen tests), the result of which will also be shown on the digital certificate. Children under six years of age are exempt from taking a test and minors of any age also if their parents are fully vaccinated.
The certificate will only endorse vaccines approved by the European Medicines Agency (EMA), which so far are those from Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca, and Jannsen. Even so, member countries will still have the ability to decide whether to impose quarantines or close their borders in the event of new variants of the virus appearing.
Spain has already been testing this model for several weeks and started to implement the digital certificate in several regions.
However, it is not a mandatory document, but its use will be encouraged because travelers who do not have it will have to continue filling out long forms and submitting to PCR controls upon arrival.
The goal is to attract 14 to 15.5 million international tourists, that is, approximately 40 percent of those who arrived in 2019, the last ‘normal’ year before the pandemic, but double the number who arrived last year.
Published surinenglish.com 01 July 2021