Iceland reopening borders no later than 15th of June
On the 12th of May 2020 Iceland’s Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir announced the upcoming changes to the travel restrictions that have been affecting Iceland since March, when the Covid-19 pandemic has hit our country.
The current regulations impose that anyone coming into the country go into 14-day isolation. This rule, combined with the global closures and travel restrictions that have affected virtually every country in the world, has determined a dramatic drop in visitors to the country.
Even though it will take a very long time before the country can bounce back, the new regulations are aimed at helping the recovery of the whole nation.
The new directives will be implemented in two steps:
- Starting from the 15th of May, residents of the Faroe Islands and Greenland will not be required to go into quarantine upon arrival. The Faroe Islands haven’t registered any new infections since the 9th of May. Greenland has been Covid-free since the beginning of April.
- Between the 25th of May and the 15th of June, things will change significantly when it comes to international travel. From a day that still needs to be determined by the authorities, tourists and residents arriving to Iceland will have three options: go into a 2-week quarantine, get tested for the virus at the airport, or present a clean bill of health issued by the health authorities of the country of origin. Additionally, it will be mandatory to install the Rakning C-19 app, which is aimed at tracing the spread of the disease by accessing GPS information stored on the mobile device.
These new regulations only apply to the countries that are part of the Schengen Area. Icelandic authorities have yet to confirm this, but the new rules are likely to be extended to residents of countries that are not in the Schengen Area after the 15th of June.
The health authorities in Iceland are still working on developing this major screening system, which will likely take place at Keflavik airport and at the other points of entry in the country. They expect to have it ready by the beginning of June, so that step 2 can be put in place as soon as possible.
We at DIVE.IS hope that this new set of rules will help the whole country to get back on its feet, considering that it relies enormously on foreign visitors, both for tourism and for business.
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