Which European countries will regular travel insurance cover travelling to right now?

Jul 21, 2021

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Freedom Day, on 19 July wasn’t just a big step towards normality within England.

From 19 July 2021, for fully-vaccinated British travellers, you will no longer need to self-isolate when you return from amber countries, nor purchase a Day 8 test, nor participate in Test to Release. This turns more than 100 amber destinations green for those who are fully-jabbed. While the traffic light system update every three weeks could mean certain destinations move from amber to red, requiring hotel quarantine, destinations switching between green and amber should no longer create the sort of panic and difficulty they did prior to 19 July.

Do note France is on the new “Amber Plus” list which keeps the old amber list rules, regardless of your vaccination status.

So, is this a free pass to normal European travel this summer? Not quite.

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Each European country has its own entry conditions for British travellers right now, which range from barring all non-essential visitors, through to rolling out the welcome mat with no tests or vaccination status required. You can check the conditions of each European country here, though note these rules can and do change very regularly.

Assuming you have your eye on a European destination that will allow you entry and you can easily meet the entry conditions (such as providing your vaccination certificate), and you don’t need to self-isolate on your return, the final hurdle will be travel insurance.

While you can find specialist travel insurance that covers all destinations regardless of COVID-19 warnings, this is very expensive. So can you use normal (much cheaper) travel insurance anywhere right now? Yes, thankfully you can.

Related: Can I go on holiday to an amber list country right now?

Germany’s financial hub, Frankfurt am Main (Photo by Anton Petrus/Getty Images)

The key is to know whether the FCDO advises against travel to the destination you are looking to travel to. If there is advice against travelling there for non-essential reasons (like a holiday), it will normally void normal travel insurance.

If no such advice remains, your travel insurance should cover this.

Unfortunately, there’s no single rule as to how the FCDO decides on their travel advice when comparing to the traffic light system. You might think all green destinations have no advice against travelling to, while amber destinations do have the advice to avoid travel.

There was some hope that advice against travelling to all amber destinations would be removed from 19 July in line with the change to self-isolation rules for those fully vaccinated. This hasn’t yet happened, though many European countries have seen this welcome change in advice.

We’ve checked each European country, so you don’t have to, and right now, here is the advice.

European countries covered by normal travel insurance

These destinations do not have advice against travelling to, meaning most normal travel insurance policies would cover travelling here right now:

  • Austria
  • Bulgaria
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece (including islands)
  • Ireland
  • Kosovo (some advice against visiting some regional areas)
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • North Macedonia
  • Norway
  • Portugal
  • Serbia
  • Slovakia
  • Spain
  • Switzerland
  • Ukraine (some advice against visiting some regional areas)
Playa de Las Teresitas. (Photo by Westend61/Getty)

 

European countries that would invalidate travel insurance

These destinations have advice to “avoid travel to” which will invalidate most normal travel insurance policies:

  • Andorra
  • Belarus
  • Belgium
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Estonia
  • Hungary
  • Italy
  • Latvia
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Moldova
  • Monaco
  • Montenegro
  • Netherlands
  • Poland
  • Romania
  • San Marino
  • Slovenia
  • Sweden
  • Turkey (Red List)
(Photo by Mikko Pekkala/EyeEm / Getty Images)

Bottom line

Travelling this summer is definitely different to before the pandemic. There are constantly changing entry requirements, COVID-19 tests to order and pay for and potential self-isolation on your return to the United Kingdom.

19 July did see a great change, with so many amber destinations now green if you are fully vaccinated. If you do want a summer holiday in Europe right now, use the above list as a guide for normal travel insurance coverage, but make sure you check the FCDO website regularly before you go as this advice, as well as the entry requirements does change regularly.

Featured image by @byhafes via Twenty20

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