Frequently asked questions on Digital Registration on Entry, the obligation to furnish proof and quarantine on entry

General Questions

What does the Ordinance on Coronavirus Entry Regulations regulate?

The Ordinance on Coronavirus Entry Regulations of 30 July 2021 (Coronavirus-Einreiseverordnung) regulates a uniform, nation-wide obligation to register, quarantine and furnish proof as well as the ban on carriage from areas of variants of concern.

The new Ordinance on Coronavirus Entry Regulations contains a general obligation for persons entering the country to furnish proof, irrespective of the mode of transport or whether they previously spent time in a high-risk area or area of variants of concern. Persons aged 12 or over must possess a negative test result or proof of vaccination or recovery when entering the country. Persons who, at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry, spent time in an area classified as a high-risk area or area of variants of concern at the time of their entry must, in addition, observe special obligations to furnish proof and are required to self-isolate. For travellers entering Germany from areas of virus variants of concern, a ban on carriage – subject to a very limited set of exceptions – has been imposed on travel from these areas via rail, bus, ship or plane.

What rules apply to people who have been vaccinated or who have recovered?

Proof of vaccination or recovery is deemed equivalent to a negative test result within the context of the obligation to furnish proof. Additionally, it can exempt you from the obligation to quarantine on entry. However, as a rule, this does not apply if you spent time in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of entry. In this case, travellers are always required to carry with them a negative test result; the aforementioned proof does not provide exemption from quarantine on entry (see also below under Obligation to quarantine on entry).

Are the regulations limited in time?

The Ordinance expires at the end of 2021. The regulations on the obligation to quarantine will initially be in force until 30 September 2021.

Types of risk area

What is a risk area?

As of 1 August 2021, risk areas distinguish between two categories: high-risk areas and areas of variants of concern. The category of “basic” risk area no longer applies.

What is a high-risk area?

High-risk areas can be regions with especially high numbers of cases, e.g. a factor of the average seven-day incidence rate per 100,000 inhabitants in Germany. A regular indicator is having a seven-day incidence rate of considerably over 100. Those can also be areas where, on account of quantitative or qualitative criteria (such as the local rate of spread, a high hospitalisation rate, a low test rate concurrent with a high positivity rate or on account of insufficiently available or reliable epidemiological data), there are indications suggesting dangerous infection trends.

What is an area of variants of concern?

Areas of variants of concern can be areas with widespread occurrence of a virus variant (mutant strain) of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus that is not widespread within Germany and that can reasonably be believed to pose a particular risk. Such particular risks can result, among other things,

  • from the virus variant causing more severe symptoms
  • or from vaccines or prior infection with coronavirus affording no or only limited protection against this variant.

Obligation to register

Where do people entering the country need to register?

Even before entering Germany, you must carry out a digital registration on entry if, at any time in the ten days prior to your entry, you spent time in an area classified as a high-risk area or an area of variants of concern at the time of your entry. Please enter information on the places you stayed over the previous 10 days on the https://einreiseanmeldung.de travel portal. After filling in all of the necessary information, you will receive a PDF file as confirmation. Before transporting you to your destination, your carrier, as a rule, will check whether you are in possession of a confirmation. Otherwise, the carrier will not be allowed to take you. Please note that persons across all age groups must be registered and children under the age of 12 are not exempted.

What do I do if I do not have access to a computer or smartphone, or if the Digital Registration on Entry’s travel portal is not available?

If you are unable to carry out a Digital Registration on Entry for want of the necessary technical equipment or because of a technical malfunction, alternatively you must fill out a substitute registration on paper  (non-accessible PDF file, 227 KB).

Where no request to present the substitute registration is made (by your carrier or the authority responsible for policing cross-border traffic), you are required, within 24 hours of entry, to either complete the Digital Registration on Entry or send the completed substitute registration by post to the following address:

Deutsche Post E-POST Solutions GmbH, 69990 Mannheim

What are the exemptions from the obligation to register?

Please check the list below for the exemptions from the obligation to register. Even if one of the exemptions applies to you, you are required to immediately notify the competent authority if you show symptoms typical of an infection with the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus within 10 days following entry into the Federal Republic of Germany.

Please note that the exemptions listed below in numbers 7 to 10 do not apply if you have spent time in an area of variants of concern. For number 6 and number 11, additional prerequisites have to be fulfilled if you wish to invoke either exemption and, at any time within the 10 days prior to entry, stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of your entry.

The exemptions in detail:

1. Transit

Persons who merely passed through a high-risk area or area of variants of concern without without stopping over are exempt from the obligation to register. Stopovers are stays which exceed the customary length of a necessary stop in order to take a break or refuel a vehicle, for instance; connection times at an airport are not deemed to constitute a stopover.

Example: A toilet break at a motorway service area is not a stopover. However, if you visit someone or spend several hours in a town on the way to your actual destination, you are stopping over.

The same applies to persons who are only in transit through and leaving the Federal Republic of Germany as quickly as possible to complete their transit journey.

2. Transport personnel

Persons entering Germany as transport personnel are exempt from the obligation to register if they adhere to appropriate safety and hygiene practices. Transport personnel means persons who enter the country on business for the purpose of international transportation of people, goods or merchandise by land, sea or air.

However, this exemption does not apply if the transport personnel have at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry stayed for more than 72 hours in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry and will be spending more than 72 hours in the Federal Republic of Germany. In these cases, transport personnel are allowed to leave the country directly, though.

3. Official delegations

Persons who enter the Federal Republic of Germany as part of an official delegation via the government terminal at Berlin Brandenburg Airport or via Cologne Bonn Airport and have spent less than 72 hours in a high-risk area or area of variants of concern, are also exempt from the obligation to register.

4. Necessary inpatient treatment for a coronavirus infection

Persons who are being brought to the Federal Republic of Germany in order to be treated for an infection with the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, because they require inpatient hospital treatment for an infection with said virus and such treatment cannot be provided in their own country are exempt from the obligation to register.

5. Stays of up to one day

Persons who spent less than 24 hours in a high-risk area or area of variants of concern or are entering the Federal Republic of Germany for less than 24 hours under the border traffic regime, are exempt from the obligation to register.

6. Cross-border commuters and border crossers

There is also an exemption for persons who are cross-border commuters or border crossers.

This applies to areas of variants of concern with the proviso that the work they carry out is urgently required and critical to maintaining operational procedures.

A cross-border commuter is a person whose place of residence is in the Federal Republic of Germany and who is compelled to travel to the place abroad where they practise their profession, study or engage in vocational training in order to practise their profession, to study or engage in vocational training and who regularly – at least once a week – returns to their place of residence. A cross-border commuter is also the person who has the duty of care and custody over or is the carer of another person who takes them to the place or collects them from the place where they practise their profession, study or engage in vocational training.

A border crosser is a person whose place of residence is abroad and who is compelled to travel to the Federal Republic of Germany to practise their profession, study or engage in vocational training and who regularly – at least once a week – returns to their place of residence. A border crosser is also the person who has the duty of care and custody over or is the carer of another person who takes them to or collects them from the place where they practise their profession, study or engage in vocational training.

7. Police officers or customs officers

The exemption from the obligation to register also applies to persons who are police officers or customs officers returning from an operation or from duties equivalent to an operation abroad.

This exemption does not apply to persons who at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry.

8. Persons within the scope of enforcement by the Bundeswehr of the Protection against Infection Act

Moreover, also persons covered by section 54a (1) of the Protection against Infection Act are exempt from the obligation to register.

This exemption does not apply to persons who at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry.

9. Members of foreign armed forces

There is also an exemption for persons who are members of foreign armed forces.

This includes members of foreign armed forces within the meaning of the NATO Status of Forces Agreement, the NATO Partnership for Peace Status of Forces Agreement and the European Union Status of Forces Agreement who are entering or returning to the Federal Republic of Germany for operational reasons.

This exemption does not apply to persons who at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry.

10. Short stays to visit close relatives

An exemption from the obligation to register also exists in the case of stays of less than 72 hours in the Federal Republic of Germany or in a high-risk area for persons who enter the country to visit first-degree relatives, or spouses or life partners who do not form part of the same household, or on account of shared custody or a right of access.

This exemption does not apply to persons who at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry.

11. Short stays of high-ranking members of the diplomatic or consular service, of parliaments or governments

An exemption from the obligation to register also exists for persons who are high-ranking members of the diplomatic or consular service, of parliaments or governments, in the case of stays of less than 72 hours in the Federal Republic of Germany or in a high-risk area.

This exemption applies to high-ranking members of the diplomatic or consular service, of parliaments or governments, who at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry, provided that they will stay in the Federal Republic of Germany for less than 72 hours or previously stayed in an area of variants of concern for less than 72 hours and follow stringent safety and hygiene protocols, in particular daily testing.

Obligation to furnish proof

Who is required to furnish proof?

Travellers aged 12 or over must, irrespective of the mode of transport or whether they previously spent time in a high-risk area or area of variants of concern, as a rule carry with them a negative test result or proof of vaccination or recovery when entering the country. In the context of policing cross-border traffic into Germany, such proof may also be demanded by the Federal Police or the competent authority. Persons travelling by air must already present such proof to their carrier before departure.

When do I need to present proof?

Travellers aged 12 or over must, irrespective of the mode of transport or whether they previously spent time in a high-risk area or area of variants of concern, as a rule carry with them a negative test result or proof of vaccination or recovery when entering the country. In the context of policing cross-border traffic into Germany, such proof may also be demanded by the Federal Police or the competent authority. Persons travelling by air must already present such proof to their carrier before departure. Also, travellers who, at any time within the last ten days prior to entry, spent time in an area classified as a high-risk area at the time of entry must present their carrier, e.g. the airline, with a negative test result or proof of vaccination or recovery before departure. In the context of policing cross-border traffic into Germany, this proof may also be demanded by the Federal Police. Travellers who, at any time within the last ten days prior to entry, spent time in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of entry must present their carrier with a negative test result; proof of recovery or proof of vaccination is not sufficient in such cases. In the context of policing cross-border traffic into Germany, this proof may also be demanded by the Federal Police. Without such proof, carriage is not possible in any of the above cases. 

What constitutes proof of recovery?

Proof of a previous infection with the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus issued in written or digital form in German, English, French, Italian or Spanish, if the test is based on laboratory diagnostics comprising a nucleic acid test (PCR, PoC-PCR or other nucleic acid amplification test methods) and it was performed no less than 28 days and no more than six months previously.

What constitutes proof of vaccination?

To enable entry, proof of vaccination must meet the requirements set out in section 2 (10) of the Ordinance on Coronavirus Entry Regulations.

1. It must prove a full course of vaccination against the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus was completed.

The vaccination on which it is based must be comprised of one or more of the vaccines listed by the Paul Ehrlich Institute at www.pei.de/impfstoffe/covid-19 and

  • either comprise the number of vaccine doses necessary to provide full protection as published online by the Paul Ehrlich Institute at https://www.pei.de/impfstoffe/covid-19 and no less than 14 days may have elapsed since the last required single vaccination, or

  • for recovered persons, consist of the administration of one vaccine dose. To prove they are fully vaccinated, recovered persons must prove that they had had COVID-19 before they were vaccinated. Proof is provided by submitting a positive PCR test.

2. To certify vaccination, the proof must include the following data:

  • The personal data of the vaccinated person (at least surname, first name and date of birth or number of passport/identity card/ID card)      

  • Date of vaccination, number of vaccinations,

  • Vaccine name,

  • Name of the disease vaccinated against and

  • Distinguishing marks that indicate which person or institution is responsible for performing the vaccination or issuing the certificate, such as an official emblem or the issuer’s name.

3. Proof of full vaccination must be provided in German, English, French, Italian or Spanish.

4. Proof in written or digital form is accepted if it meets the criteria listed in 1., 2., and 3. For the purposes of inspection by the carrier or the authority tasked with policing cross-border traffic, photographs of written proof are not considered proof in digital form. Proof in digital form need to have been issued in digital form by the authorised issuer and transmitted in digital form to the authorised recipient.
Please note that these are general requirements under the Ordinance on Coronavirus Entry Regulations. The digital COVID certificate on the basis of the EU Digital COVID Certificate Regulation provides an additional EU-wide, standardised form of proof that can be automatically scanned via barcode, which can be carried and verified in a data protection compliant manner in a paper form or using an app. Further requirements may need to be satisfied for the issuance of an EU digital COVID certificate on the basis of the EU Digital COVID Certificate Regulation; however, the EU digital COVID certificates are of course accepted as proof in Germany.

How recent must the test be?

The test result must pertain to a test taken no earlier than 48 hours (for antigen tests) or 72 hours (for PCR tests) beforehand. Relevant when calculating these time frames is the time of entry into Germany. When entering from areas of variants of concern, this time frame is reduced to 24 hours with antigen tests.

At what point in time am I entering Germany?

In general, when entering the Federal Republic of Germany by land, sea or air, entry represents when the border is crossed. If entry into Germany is through a carrier, entry is determined to be the first scheduled disembarkation point in the Federal Republic of Germany.
A direct transfer at an airport in order to continue one’s journey into another (Schengen) state is not considered an entry within the meaning of the Ordinance on Coronavirus Entry Regulations.

Do airline passengers who are simply changing flights in the Federal Republic of Germany have to comply with the provisions of the Ordinance on Coronavirus Entry Regulations? Does this also apply to airline passengers spending time in the international transit zones of German airports?

Airline passengers who are simply changing flights at an airport in the Federal Republic of Germany need not comply with the provisions of the Ordinance on Coronavirus Entry Regulations. A direct transfer at an airport in order to continue one’s journey into another (Schengen) state is not considered an entry within the meaning of the Ordinance on Coronavirus Entry Regulations.

What tests are recognised?

In principle, nucleic acid amplification techniques (PCR, LAMP, TMA) and antigen tests are recognised for the direct detection of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus.
Antibody tests are not recognised.

The tests can be carried out or supervised by the following persons:

  • In Germany or abroad, by a service provider pursuant to section 6 (1) of the Ordinance on Coronavirus Testing (Coronavirus-Testverordnung)
  • or as part of in-company testing in the course of occupational safety measures done by staff who have undergone the necessary training or have the necessary knowledge and experience therefor, or
  • abroad, by an agency authorised under the law of the country in question.

Proof of testing can be provided in German, English, French, Italian or Spanish in written or digital form.

 

What do I do if the test is positive? Does this mean that I cannot return to Germany?

Note: In case your test is positive, we urgently advise you self-isolate immediately. To protect other passengers and transport staff, you should refrain from carriage.

Persons who tested positive are not subject to a general ban on entry. However, carriers are not allowed to carry persons who tested positive by air or by any means of transport from a high-risk area or area of variants of concern. You must isolate yourself on your own responsibility according to local regulations. By contrast, entry by private transport continues to be possible. However, if persons entering with a positive test result happen to be checked at the border, their data will be registered and transmitted to the competent authorities.

What are the exemptions from the obligation to furnish proof?

Children under the age of 12
Children under the age of 12 are not covered by the obligation to furnish proof. This means that they do not need to carry proof when entering Germany.

All other persons are only exempt from the obligation to furnish proof if one of the following exemptions applies to them:

1. Transport personnel

Persons entering Germany as transport personnel are exempt from the obligation to furnish proof if they adhere to appropriate safety and hygiene practices. Transport personnel means persons who enter the country on business for the purpose of international transportation of people, goods or merchandise by land, sea or air.
This exemption does not apply if, at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry, the transport personnel stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry.

2. Official delegations

Persons who, as a member of an official delegation, are returning to Germany via the government terminal at Berlin Brandenburg Airport or Cologne/Bonn Airport and spent less than 72 hours in a high-risk area, are exempt from the obligation to furnish proof.
This does not apply to persons who, at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry, stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry.

3. Exemption granted by the competent authority

The obligation to furnish proof does not apply to persons for whom the competent authority has, in individual justified cases, granted exemptions on account of a good reason.

This option does not apply to persons who, at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry, stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry.

4. Cross-border commuters, border crossers and stays of up to one day

Cross-border commuters, border crossers or persons staying for of up to one day are only subject to an obligation to furnish proof in the following cases: The obligation to furnish proof only applies when entering from a high-risk area, an area of variants of concern or by air.

Cross-border commuters and border crossers who have no proof of vaccination or recovery only need to transmit proof of testing twice a week.

A cross-border commuter is a person whose place of residence is in the Federal Republic of Germany and who is compelled to travel to the place abroad where they practise their profession, study or engage in vocational training in order to practise their profession, to study or engage in vocational training and who regularly – at least once a week – returns to their place of residence. A cross-border commuter is also the person who has the duty of care and custody over or is the carer of another person who takes them to the place or collects them from the place where they practise their profession, study or engage in vocational training.

A border crosser is a person whose place of residence is abroad and who is compelled to travel to the Federal Republic of Germany to practise their profession, study or engage in vocational training and who regularly – at least once a week – returns to their place of residence. A border crosser is also the person who has the duty of care and custody over or is the carer of another person who takes them to the place or collects them from the place where they practise their profession, study or engage in vocational training.

In this context, a stay of up to one day means that the persons spent less than 24 hours in a high-risk area or area of variants of concern or are entering the Federal Republic of Germany for less than 24 hours under the border traffic regime.

Obligation to quarantine on entry

Who needs to quarantine after entry?

If, at any time within the ten days prior to entry, you spent time in an area classified as a high-risk area or area of variants of concern at the time of your entry, you must, as a rule, make your way directly to your home – or other place of accommodation at your destination – upon arrival and remain isolated there (home quarantine). If you are entering Germany following a stay in a high-risk area, you will need to self-isolate for ten days; if you spent time in an area of variants of concern prior to entry, the self-isolation period is 14 days.

Home quarantine automatically ends if the area concerned is no longer listed under www.rki.de/risikogebiete (known as de-listing).

Does the quarantine obligation also apply to people who have recovered or who have been vaccinated?

Home quarantine can be ended early by submitting proof of vaccination or of recovery via the Federal Republic’s travel portal at https://einreiseanmeldung.de. This applies to all travellers who previously spent time in an area classified as a high-risk area at the time of their entry into the Federal Republic of Germany. Quarantine can be ended after they have submitted their negative test result.

If proof of recovery or vaccination is already submitted before entry, no quarantine is necessary.

When a test result is transmitted, the test may not have been conducted earlier than five days after entry. For children under the age of twelve, the self-isolation period automatically ends five days after entry.

Following a stay in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry into the Federal Republic of Germany, even people with proof of vaccination or recovery are, as a rule, obligated to quarantine for fourteen days. Ending quarantine early when entering from areas of variants of concern may be an option in the following two cases:

1. The respective area of variants of concern is downgraded in Germany during the self-isolation period. In this case, when the self-isolation period ends depends on the regulations for high-risk areas.

2. For persons who are fully vaccinated with a specific vaccine listed on the Robert Koch Institute’s website, self-isolation ends when they submit their proof of vaccination. This is on condition that the Robert Koch Institute has determined (and published on its website) that this vaccine is sufficiently effective against the variant of the virus for which the classification as an area of variants of concern was made. Currently, no determination according to section 4 (2) sentence 5 of the Ordinance on Coronavirus Entry Regulations has been made by the RKI stating that a specific vaccine is sufficiently effective against the virus variant for which the classification as an area of variants of concern was made. There is therefore no exemption from the obligation to quarantine in effect for fully vaccinated persons who have spent time in an area of variants of concern.

Special case: end in case of de-listing Home quarantine also automatically ends if the area concerned is no longer listed under www.rki.de/risikogebiete (known as de-listing).

What are the exemptions from the obligation to quarantine on entry?

Please check the list below for the exemptions from the obligation to quarantine on entry. Even if one of the exemptions applies to you, you are required to immediately notify the competent authority if you show symptoms typical of an infection with the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus within 10 days following entry into the Federal Republic of Germany.

Please note that some of the exemptions listed below do not apply or only apply subject to restrictions if you have spent time in an area of variants of concern:
Please note that the exemptions listed below in numbers 7 to 12 do not apply if you have spent time in an area of variants of concern. For numbers 6 and 11, additional prerequisites have to be fulfilled if, at any time within the 10 days prior to entry, you stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of your entry:

The exemptions in detail:

1. Transit

Persons who have merely passed through a high-risk area or area of variants of concern without stopping over are exempt from the obligation to quarantine on entry. Stopovers are stays which exceed the customary length of a necessary stop in order to take a break or refuel a vehicle, for instance; connection times at an airport are not deemed to constitute a stopover.

Example: A toilet break at a motorway service area is not a stopover. However, if you visit someone or spend several hours in a town on the way to your actual destination, you are stopping over.

The same goes for persons who are only in transit through and leaving the Federal Republic of Germany as quickly as possible to complete their transit journey.

2. Transport personnel

Persons entering Germany as transport personnel are exempt from the obligation to quarantine on entry if they adhere to appropriate safety and hygiene practices. Transport personnel means persons who enter the country on business for the purpose of international transportation of people, goods or merchandise by land, sea or air.

However, this exemption does not apply if the transport personnel have at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry stayed for more than 72 hours in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry and will be spending more than 72 hours in the Federal Republic of Germany. In these cases, transport personnel are allowed to leave the country directly, though.

3. Official delegations

An exemption from the obligation to quarantine on entry also applies to persons who enter the Federal Republic of Germany as part of an official delegation via the government terminal at Berlin Brandenburg Airport or via Cologne Bonn Airport and spent less than 72 hours in a high-risk area or area of variants of concern.

4. Necessary inpatient treatment for a coronavirus infection

An exemption applies to persons who are being brought to the Federal Republic of Germany in order to be treated for an infection with the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus because they require inpatient hospital treatment for an infection with said virus and such treatment cannot be provided in their own country.

5. Stays of up to one day

Persons who spent less than 24 hours in a high-risk area or area of variants of concern or are entering the Federal Republic of Germany for less than 24 hours under the border traffic regime, are exempt from the obligation to quarantine on entry.

6. Cross-border commuters and border crossers

Persons who are cross-border commuters or border crossers are also exempt from the obligation to quarantine on entry.

This applies to areas of variants of concern with the proviso that the work they carry out is urgently required and critical to maintaining operational procedures.

A cross-border commuter is a person whose place of residence is in the Federal Republic of Germany and who is compelled to travel to the place where they practise their profession, study or engage in vocational training abroad in order to practise their profession, to study or engage in vocational training and who regularly – at least once a week – returns to their place of residence. A cross-border commuter is also the person who has the duty of care and custody over or is the carer of another person who takes them to the place or collects them from the place where they practise their profession, study or engage in vocational training.

A border crosser is a person whose place of residence is abroad and who is compelled to travel to the Federal Republic of Germany to practise their profession, study or engage in vocational training and who regularly – at least once a week – returns to their place of residence. A border crosser is also the person who has the duty of care and custody over or is the carer of another person who takes them to the place or collects them from the place where they practise their profession, study or engage in vocational training.

7. Police officers or customs officers

The exemption from the obligation to quarantine on entry also applies to persons who are police officers or customs officers returning from an operation and from duties equivalent to an operation abroad.

This exemption does not apply to persons who at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry.

8. Persons within the scope of enforcement by the Bundeswehr of the Protection against Infection Act

Moreover, also persons covered by section 54a (1) of the Protection against Infection Act are exempt from the obligation to quarantine on entry.

This exemption does not apply to persons who at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry.

9. Members of foreign armed forces

Persons who are members of foreign armed forces are also exempt from the obligation to quarantine on entry.
This includes members of foreign armed forces within the meaning of the NATO Status of Forces Agreement, the NATO Partnership for Peace Status of Forces Agreement and the European Union Status of Forces Agreement who are entering or returning to the Federal Republic of Germany for operational reasons.

This exemption does not apply to persons who at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry.

10. Shorts stays to visit close relatives

An exemption from the obligation to quarantine on entry also exists for persons who are entering the country to visit first-degree relatives or spouses or life partners who do not form part of the same household, or on account of shared custody or a right of access, in the case of stays of less than 72 hours in the Federal Republic of Germany or in a high-risk area.

This exemption does not apply to persons who at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry.

11. Short stays of high-ranking members of the diplomatic or consular service, of parliaments or governments

An exemption from the obligation to quarantine on entry also exists for persons who are high-ranking members of the diplomatic or consular service, of parliaments or governments, in the case of stays of less than 72 hours in the Federal Republic of Germany or in a high-risk area.

This exemption applies to high-ranking members of the diplomatic or consular service, of parliaments or governments who, at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry, stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry, provided that they will stay for less than 72 hours or previously stayed in an area of variants of concern for less than 72 hours and adhere to stringent safety and hygiene protocols, in particular daily testing.

12. Exemption granted by the competent authority

There is an exemption from quarantine on entry for persons for whom the competent authority has, in justified cases, granted further exemptions upon application where there is good reason to do so.

This exemption does not apply to persons who at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry.

When can I get tested to be released from quarantine? Is testing to be released also an option after having stayed in an area of variants of concern?

Following a stay in an area classified as a high-risk area at the time of entry into the Federal Republic of Germany, home quarantine can be ended early by submitting a negative test result via the Federal Republic’s travel portal at einreiseanmeldung.de. However, this test may not have been taken earlier than five days following entry into the country. Quarantine can be ended from the time you have submitted your negative test result.

For children under the age of twelve, the period of quarantine on entry automatically ends five days after entry. Therefore, they do not need to get tested to shorten the ten-day quar-antine on entry.

After having stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of entry into the Federal Republic of Germany, the quarantine period lasts for a period of 14 days and cannot be ended early. However, there is the possibility of shortening the self-isolation period by submitting a negative test result if the respective area of variants of concern is downgraded during the self-isolation period following entry into Germany. In this case, when the self-isolation period ends depends on the regulations for high-risk areas.

In the context of top-level sports, testing to be released after having stayed in an area of variants of concern is an option, by way of exception, if the persons concerned are to be accredited by the relevant organising committee to prepare, participate in, carry out or follow up on international sporting events and only if strict protection and hygiene concepts are adhered to, in particular daily testing.

What are the exemptions from the five days before being allowed to test to release follow-ing a stay in a high-risk area?

In exceptional cases, testing to be released after a stay in a high-risk area is already possible before the five days expire. This means that in these cases, testing can be done earlier, even before entry. Quarantine ends as soon as proof of testing is submitted to the competent authority via the digital travel portal. If it is submitted ahead of entry (strongly recommend-ed), quarantine can be avoided.

However, the persons covered by the exemption are required to immediately notify the competent authority if they show symptoms typical of an infection with the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus within the 10 days following entry into the Federal Republic of Germany.

The exemption from the five days before being allowed to test to release applies to the following persons:

  1. Persons whose work is essential for maintaining the functioning of the healthcare sys-tem. These are, in particular, doctors, nursing staff, medical support staff and carers
  2. Persons whose work is essential for maintaining the public safety and order
  3. Persons whose work is essential for maintaining diplomatic and consular relations
  4. Persons whose work is essential for maintaining the administration of justice.
  5. Persons whose work is essential for maintaining the functioning of parliament, govern-ment and the administration at the federal, state and local level
  6. Persons whose work is essential for the functioning of the organs of the European Union and of international organisations
  7. Persons who are entering the country to visit first-degree relatives (for instance parents or children) or second-degree relatives (for instance siblings, grandchildren or grandpar-ents), or spouses or life partners who do not form part of the same household, or on ac-count of shared custody or a right of access
  8. Persons entering for urgent medical treatment
  9. Persons entering to provide support to or care for vulnerable or dependent persons
  10. Persons who have, owing to business which is absolutely essential and cannot be post-poned, on account of their vocational training or studies, spent up to five days in a high-risk area or are entering the Federal Republic of Germany for those reasons
  11. Persons who are to be accredited by the relevant organising committee for the purposes of preparing, participating in, carrying out or following up on an international sporting event or have been invited by a national sports federation to take part in training or courses
  12. Persons who participate in artistic or cultural production or presentation processes in the exercise of their artistic profession on the basis of contractual obligations
  13. Persons entering the Federal Republic of Germany in order to take up employment for at least three weeks if, in the first five days following entry to the Federal Republic of Ger-many, the following conditions are met:
  1. group-specific in-company hygiene measures and precautions to avoid con-tacts outside the work group must be taken at their place of accommodation and employment that are comparable to quarantine on entry,
  2. they are only permitted to leave their accommodation to carry out their work, and
  3. their employer must notify the competent authority of their employment prior to their taking up employment and document the measures taken as set out in 1. and 2.

These exemptions do not apply to persons who, at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry, stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry.

Can children under the age of 12 who have stayed in a high-risk area get tested to be released, by way of exception, from the five-day quarantine on entry?

Children under the age of 12 can also get tested to shorten or avoid quarantine on entry if the following conditions are met:

  • One of the above exemptions from the five days before being allowed to test to re-lease after having stayed in a high-risk area must apply (see also under “What are the exemptions from the five days before being allowed to test to release following a stay in a high-risk area?”)
  • Proof of a (negative) test result must be transmitted to the competent authority via the travel portal.

Only if these conditions are met does the obligation for children under the age of 12 to self-isolate end as of the time the proof is submitted (i.e. ideally earlier than five days after en-try). Absent an exemption and test result transmission, the default regulation of a five-day quarantine for children under the age of 12 applies.

Note: In the exceptional case described, testing to be released is voluntary and unrelated to the general obligations to furnish proof for persons aged twelve or over.

This exemption does not apply to persons who at any time within the last 10 days prior to entry stayed in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of their entry.

How is the quarantine duration and the five-day deadline for “test to release” calculated?

If, at any time within the ten days prior to entry, you spent time in an area classified as a high-risk area or area of variants of concern, you must, as a rule, make your way directly to your home – or other place of accommodation at your destination – upon arrival and remain isolated there (home quarantine). If you are entering Germany following a stay in a high-risk area, you will need to self-isolate for ten days; if you spent time in an area of variants of concern prior to entry, the self-isolation period is 14 days.

Example: This means that if you entered the country on 1 August 2021 after spending time in a high-risk area, your self-isolation will end on 11 August 2021; after spending time in an area of variants of concern, however, it will end on 15 August 2021.

If you spent time in a high-incidence area prior to entry, the test to release may not be conducted earlier than five days after entry.

Example: This means that if you entered the country on 1 August 2021, testing to be re-leased will only be possible from 6 August 2021.

When does quarantine end automatically? What is de-listing?

Home quarantine automatically ends if the area concerned is no longer listed under www.rki.de/risikogebiete (known as de-listing). This is the case when the area concerned is classed neither as a high-risk area nor an area of variants of concern.

This case is only relevant if the area is de-listed after entry, but before the end of the self-isolation period.

What applies if the area I am travelling from is already de-listed at the time of entry?

If the area you spent time in is already de-listed as you enter Germany (i.e. it is classed neither as a high-risk area nor area of variants of concern), you are under no obligation to register or self-isolate. The general obligation for anyone aged 12 or over to furnish proof remains in effect.

Entry when accompanied by children

Please note the following regulations if you are entering the country accompanied by children:

  • Registration required: Minors who, at any time within the last ten days prior to entry, spent time in an area classified as a high-risk area or an area of variants of concern at the time of entry must be registered.
  • Obligation to furnish proof: Children under the age of 12 are exempt from the obligation to furnish proof.
  • Obligation to self-isolate: For children under the age of 12, quarantine after a stay in an area classified as a high-risk area at the time of entry automatically ends after the fifth day following entry into Germany. Only in exceptional cases (see also under “Can chil-dren under the age of 12 who have stayed in a high-risk area get tested to be released, by way of exception, from the five-day quarantine on entry?”) is it possible for children to shorten or be exempted from the five-day quarantine on entry by getting tested.
  • However, after a stay in an area classified as an area of variants of concern at the time of entry, the strict fourteen-day quarantine still applies.

Ban on carriage

In addition to the current rules on registration, quarantine and furnishing proof, it is neces-sary to restrict the transport of persons from the countries classified as areas of variants of concern into the Federal Republic of Germany to protect the population of the Federal Re-public of Germany and limit the introduction and rapid spread of dangerous virus variants. Where any of the below exemptions is concerned, however, the passengers are required to provide proof, on request of the carrier or the authority entrusted with the policing of cross-border traffic, that the conditions for the exemption invoked are met.

Moreover, passengers being carried from an area of variants of concern must, of course, as set out above

  • Register via the digital travel portal before entry
  • Possess proof of testing for presentation to the carrier and when entering Germany and
  • Self-isolate for 14 days after entry.

Who is the ban on carriage aimed at?

The ban on carriage obligates carriers.

Carriers are all undertakings which carry passengers to the Federal Republic of Germany by means of cross-border rail, bus, air or sea traffic.

What persons may not be carried to Germany?

Carriers are prohibited from carrying persons from areas of variants of concern to the Fed-eral Republic of Germany.

What are the exemptions from the ban on carriage?

The ban on carriage does not apply to

  1. the carriage of German nationals or persons who have their place of residence and right of residence in the Federal Republic of Germany. The same applies, in each case, to their spouses, life partners who form part of the same household, minor children and, in the case of minor children, their parent or parents.
  2. The carriage of persons who are merely changing flights at an airport in the Federal Republic of Germany
  3. Postal, freight or unladen transportation exclusively
  4. The repatriation of aircraft, ships and crews
  5. Transports with and of personnel in the public health interest, air-ambulance flights and flights carrying organs for transplantation, as well as the necessary escort per-sonnel
  6. Carriage for urgent humanitarian reasons
  7. Carriage on behalf of EURATOM Safeguards, the International Atomic Energy Agency, the United Nations and its organisations, the European Union and the European Cen-tre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts
  8. The carriage of members of a foreign or consular mission whose appointment and ar-rival has been notified to the Federal Foreign Office. The same goes, in each case, for their accompanying spouse, life partner and minor children
  9. The carriage of persons who are to be accredited by the relevant organising commit-tee to prepare, participate in, carry out or follow up on international sporting events
  10. The carriage of vaccinated persons whose carriage the Federal Ministry of Health, with the agreement of the Federal Foreign Office and the Federal Ministry of the Inte-rior, Building and Community, has determined to be in the national interest of the Federal Republic of Germany.