Big cities in Germany, Eastern Europe turn red on travel map
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Big cities in Germany, Eastern Europe turn red on travel map

Cities like Berlin, Zürich and Sofia became red zones for travellers from Belgium on the map of Europe this weekend, following the latest update by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC).

According to the latest changes – which went into force one day early on Saturday instead of Sunday – regions in Germany, Switzerland, Sweden and Bulgaria turned red, meaning that the risk of infection is now considered “high” by the Belgian authorities.

Germany, which remained orange on the ECDC’s map for a long time, is now seeing large cities such as capital Berlin, Hamburg, Düsseldorf and Cologne, as well as Münster, Detmold, Arnsberg, Saarland and Schleswig-Holstein turn red.

In France, the last region of Val de Loire in the centre of the country, turned red as well, turning the French mainland completely red. Only the island of Mayotte still has an orange colour.

The whole of Bulgaria, including its popular city-trip destination capital city of Sofia, has now also turned red.

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Liechtenstein has turned red for travellers coming from Belgium as well, as have the Swiss regions of Espace Mittelland, Zürich, and Eastern and Central parts of Switzerland.

The Greek regions of Eastern Macedonia, Thrace and Thessaly have now also coloured red, turning the entire country into a red zone.

East Middle Sweden, Småland and the islands, South Sweden, West Sweden and North Middle Sweden have now also been added to the Swedish red zones, and Greenland and the cultural regions of Lithuania have turned red as well.

The change to red means that travellers who are not (fully) vaccinated have to undergo a PCR test on day 1 of their return, as well as on day 7. Quarantine between the two tests is not necessary, except for people who test positive, and will therefore have to self-isolate, according to last week’s latest update by the Consultative Committee.

Those returning from a green or orange zone do not need to be tested or quarantined.

However, all travellers wanting to enter Belgium after more than 48 hours abroad are required to complete the Passenger Locator Form (PLF), regardless of the colour code of the zone they return from.

Since 1 July, the colour codes no longer matter for people who are fully vaccinated or recently recovered from a Covid-19 infection, as they do not have to get tested or quarantine upon return to Belgium, according to the Belgian authorities.