Norway to scrap Covid-19 entry quarantine for all travellers

The Norwegian government will scrap its Covid-19 entry quarantine rules for all arrivals on Wednesday.

A plane at Oslo Gardermoen.
The governemnt will scrap its quarantine rules for all travellers, regardless of their vaccination status. Pictured is a plane at Gardermoen airport. Photo by Robert Bye on Unsplash

From Wednesday, January 26th, travellers arriving in Norway will no longer be required to quarantine, regardless of their vaccination status or whether they have a valid Covid-19 certificate.

Under the current rules, only travellers who are fully vaccinated and in possession of a recognised Covid-19 certificate, such as the common EU solution or NHS Covid Pass app, are able to skip quarantine upon entry into Norway.

This has meant that fully vaccinated travellers without a pass recognised by Norwegian authorities have had to undergo a 10-day quarantine period, which can be shortened after testing on day three of isolation, when arriving from an area that triggers a quarantine obligation. Unvaccinated travellers are also able to skip quarantine under the new rules. 

The rule will come as a boost to travellers from outside the European Economic Area or EEA (EU countries plus Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway), as arriving from a non-EEA country, excluding the UK, automatically triggered a quarantine obligation unless you met the Covid-19 certificate and vaccination requirements.

The rule change was announced on the government’s website, and the decision comes following a recommendation from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH). The NIPH said that travellers without a valid Covid-19 certificate accounted for 7 percent of all arrivals and only 4 percent of total infection cases, meaning the quarantine period was “of little significance” to the development of the pandemic in Norway.

“I agree with the NIPH that the proportion of infected among arrivals without a Covid certificate is so small related to the infection situation in Norway, that the time has come to change the requirement for entry quarantine,” Health Minister Ingvild Kjerkol said in a statement.

Travellers who aren’t fully vaccinated or possess a valid Covid certificate will still be required to test 24 hours before departure. All travellers, regardless of vaccination status, must test at the border after arriving and register their entry into Norway.

If the testing station is busy upon arrival, travellers will be asked to take a rapid test at home or where they will be staying while in Norway. If this test returns positive, they will need to take a PCR test. If this test returns positive, they will be required to isolate.  

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Loganair’s Edinburgh and Newcastle flights to Stavanger and Bergen take off

Airline Loganair has resumed flights from Edinburgh to Bergen and Stavanger and launched routes between Newcastle and the two cities on Norway's west coast.

Loganair's Edinburgh and Newcastle flights to Stavanger and Bergen take off

For the first time since the pandemic, Loganair’s routes between Edinburgh and Stavanger and Bergen resumed service recently

The airline operates three flights a week to the two destinations on Norway’s west coast. Fights to Stavanger take off every Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday. Trips to Bergen depart on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays. 

“Welcoming back more routes between Edinburgh and Norway allows us to enhance connectivity for leisure and business passengers from both countries. For us, it’s about offering passengers choice, and we’re excited to work with Loganair on helping people experience all Bergen and Stavanger have to offer,” Kate Sherry, Aviation Director at Edinburgh Airport, said in a press release

Tickets for the two destinations start from just shy of £100, which includes 15kg of luggage. 

Flights between Aberdeen to Oslo Gardermoen will also commence in September to increase the number of routes available for travellers between Scotland and Norway. 

Last week, the airline began operating direct flights between Newcastle and Bergen. The airline had halted all flights to Norway during the pandemic. The route between Newcastle and Stavanger has also resumed service. 

The recently resumed routes are among a growing number of options for flyers between Scotland and Norway. In April, budget airline Flyr launched a route between Oslo and Edinburgh.