Bulgaria Officially Lifts All COVID-19 Restrictions on May 1

People can start planning their holidays in Bulgaria as the authorities have officially lifted all of the COVID-19 travel restrictions.

According to a press release issued by the Bulgarian Foreign Ministry, the requirement for travelers to present a vaccination, recovery, or test certificate will be abolished from Sunday, May 1, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.

“As of May 1, 2022, all COVID-19-related travel restrictions will be lifted. From this date on, all the arriving passengers will no longer be required to provide COVID-19 related documents (ie, COVID-19 vaccination certificates, COVID-19 recovery certificates, COVID-19 medical examinations) in order for them to be allowed to enter the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria,” the Ministry informs.

This announcement followed the one from April 13, when an abolishment of COVID-19 travel restrictions for arrivals from Poland, Czech Republic, Romania, Slovakia, Hungary, Turkey, Serbia, Israel, North Macedonia, and Egypt was published.

More specifically, the government ordered the relaxation of rules on April 1, saying there is no need to remain restrictions on citizens and businesses, although the country has the lowest vaccination rates in the EU Member States.

“Our country has been in an extraordinary epidemic situation for almost two years, but at the moment, the situation is being monitored and managed in a predictable way. There is no need to maintain restrictions on citizens and businesses,” the authorities said last month.

According to data from the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), 30.2 per cent of the Bulgarians have received the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, 29.7 per cent the primary course, and 10.7 per cent have been administered a booster shot. The vaccination rates fall behind the average of EU/EEA countries’ primary courses by 42.7 per cent.

In addition, data from the World Health Organization (WHO) shows that there are 3,767 positive cases of COVID-19 reported in Bulgaria during the last seven days, while death rates have amounted to 60 during this same period.

Furthermore, Bulgaria isn’t the only EU Member State to facilitate entry rules by the beginning of May, as Lithuania has already announced that its COVID-19-related requirements will be eased before the summer season begins.

Switzerland will also open its doors for travelers on May 2, exempting them from testing, quarantine, and other requirements that apply in a bid to mitigate the further spread of Coronavirus.

“The entry restrictions currently in place will be lifted from May 2. As of that date, the usual rules for entering Switzerland will apply,” the State Secretariat for Migration wrote in a statement.

Countries that have already lifted the restrictions are Czechia, Denmark, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Latvia, Norway, Poland, Romania, Slovenia, and Sweden.

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