Re-opening of borders in Europe and Latin America: What's coming

Re-opening of borders in Europe and Latin America: What's coming

The pandemic caused by COVID-19 has wreaked havoc worldwide. Not only the health system has collapsed, with a high number of infections and deaths, but also the economic sphere has suffered severe damage. Most of the world has been affected, and authorities had to resort to different measures to control the virus.

Governments from different countries decided to close their country borders. Thus, the international flow of people, which promoted the spreading of the virus, was dramatically reduced. Only sporadic flights to repatriate the citizens who were stranded in a foreign country were allowed.

In most countries around Europe, the worst part of the infection appears to be over, so they made the decision to open their borders gradually. In some cases, among neighboring countries within the European Union, while in others, internationally.

Characteristics of the upcoming flights 

Although flights and airlines began operating, levels of consumption similar to pre-pandemic times are not expected to occur soon. The virus has not disappeared yet and there is no vaccine available, so fear still remains in people, and not everyone is willing to travel to foreign countries.

In addition to the measures already known, such as social distancing and the use of a mask, all flights must adapt to sanitary protocols to guarantee the minimum chance of contagion. 

Both the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and the International Airports Council (IAC) declared that this is the greatest challenge in the history of commercial aviation.

The situation in different European countries

The opening of borders is not the same in all countries. Some will do it among neighboring countries, others internationally. Different measures will also be taken, such as a mandatory 14-day quarantine, or a test upon arrival in the country.

This is the panorama in different countries:

  • Italy: one of the first countries to open its borders. Flights will begin in June, and the first international tourists are expected to arrive by June 25th. Free tests will be granted to visitors to check the positive or negative state of the virus.
  • Spain: its borders will be opened to all kinds of tourists from July 1st.
  • United Kingdom: currently its borders are not closed. However, from June 8th, anyone entering British territory must remain isolated for 14 days.
  • Germany: It is expected that by June 15th, its borders will be opened for visitors from 31 European countries.
  • Portugal and France: both countries have forbidden flights from outside the European Union and the United Kingdom until June 15th. After that date, all kinds of international restrictions are expected to be disregarded, without any type of quarantine included.
  • Cyprus and Albania: these are two countries that have fully opened their borders for visitors from all around the world.
  • Slovenia: this is a special case; they have declared the end of the pandemic since May 15th. Therefore, there are no barriers or restrictions to enter the country.

These are some particular cases, but the situation in most Europe is similar, with the borders reopening gradually in June and July.

In Latin America, the virus is still latent so there are no measures or projection of dates regarding the reopening of borders. Mexico will open some of its most popular beaches in July, although this measure will be taken gradually.

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