UPDATED: Which countries are currently on Switzerland’s quarantine list?

Several countries including Ireland, Denmark, the Netherlands and the Czech Republic have been added to Switzerland's quarantine list.

UPDATED: Which countries are currently on Switzerland's quarantine list?
A empty terminal at Geneva Airport. Photo: FABRICE COFFRINI / AFP

NOTE: Switzerland updated its high-risk country list from February 1st onwards. Please click here for updated information. 

The Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH) updated its mandatory quarantine list on January 12th, 2021. 

Ireland was added to the list with immediate effect, while the Czech Republic, Denmark, the Netherlands and Panama will go on Switzerland's list from Friday, January 15th onwards. 

Ireland's addition to the quarantine list was made with immediate effect due to spiralling infection rates on the Emerald Isle. 

In addition, the Italian region of Friuli Venezia Giulia has been removed, along with Belize. The removal will take effect on January 15th. 

Which countries are on the list now?

Switzerland has a different rule for its neighbours than for countries it does not share a land border with. 

Any country sharing a land border with Switzerland will see regions placed on the list rather than the nation as a whole. 

Therefore, the German state of Sachsen is on the list, along with the Italian region of Veneto. 

Note that the countries in bold will be added to the list on January 15th, while the others are on the list as at January 12th. 

These are: Andorra, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Georgia, Ireland, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Montenegro, the Netherlands, Panama, San Marino, Serbia, Slovenia, Sweden, South Africa, United Kingdom and United States of America.

The official updated list can be seen here in English. 

How has the list changed over time? 

On December 21st, the United Kingdom and South Africa were added to the list. 

Importantly, the quarantine requirement was backdated to December 14th. 

READ MORE: Switzerland suspends flights with UK over new Covid strain

This is intended in particular to stop travel from these countries for tourism purposes due to a newly detected strain of the virus. 

“All persons who have entered Switzerland from these two countries since December 14th must go into quarantine for 10 days”, the Federal Council said in a statement

As of December 19th, the Austrian states of Carinthia, Styria and Upper Austria were removed from the list. 

Those heading to Austria will however be required to quarantine from December 19th. 

UPDATED: What you need to know about Austria's quarantine rules 

On December 19th, French Polynesia, Hungary, Italy’s Emilia Romagna region, Jordan, North Macedonia, Poland and Portugal will be removed from the list. 

What are Switzerland's quarantine rules? 

Anyone required to quarantine must do so for a ten-day period. 

When arriving in Switzerland, you are required to contact the cantonal health authorities within two days. 

Even if you have evidence of a negative test, you will still be required to quarantine for ten days. 

More information is available in English here


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Covid face mask rule on flights in Europe set to be eased

The mandatory EU-wide mask requirement for air travel is set to be dropped from Monday, May 16th, but airlines may still require passengers to wear masks on some or all flights

Covid face mask rule on flights in Europe set to be eased

Europe-wide facemask rules on flights are set to be ditched as early as next week in light of new recommendations from health and air safety experts.

The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) dropped recommendations for mandatory mask-wearing in airports and during flights in updated Covid-19 safety measures for travel issued on Wednesday, May 11th.

The new rules are expected to be rolled out from Monday, May 16th, but airlines may still continue to require the wearing of masks on some or all of flights. And the updated health safety measures still say that wearing a face mask remains one of the best ways to protect against the transmission of the virus.

The joint EASA/ECDC statement reminded travellers that masks may still be required on flights to destinations in certain countries that still require the wearing of masks on public transport and in transport hubs.

It also recommends that vulnerable passengers should continue to wear a face mask regardless of the rules, ideally an FFP2/N95/KN95 type mask which offers a higher level of protection than a standard surgical mask.

“From next week, face masks will no longer need to be mandatory in air travel in all cases, broadly aligning with the changing requirements of national authorities across Europe for public transport,” EASA executive director Patrick Ky said in the statement. 

“For passengers and air crews, this is a big step forward in the normalisation of air travel. Passengers should however behave responsibly and respect the choices of others around them. And a passenger who is coughing and sneezing should strongly consider wearing a face mask, for the reassurance of those seated nearby.”  

ECDC director Andrea Ammon added: “The development and continuous updates to the Aviation Health Safety Protocol in light of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic have given travellers and aviation personnel better knowledge of the risks of transmission of SARS-CoV-2 and its variants. 

“While risks do remain, we have seen that non-pharmaceutical interventions and vaccines have allowed our lives to begin to return to normal. 

“While mandatory mask-wearing in all situations is no longer recommended, it is important to be mindful that together with physical distancing and good hand hygiene it is one of the best methods of reducing transmission. 

“The rules and requirements of departure and destination states should be respected and applied consistently, and travel operators should take care to inform passengers of any required measures in a timely manner.”